It was a lovely spring day and I went to my recovery meeting and saw my Sponsor. He asked what I was doing the next evening. “Nothing” I said. “Great – would you like to go to a baseball game?”
This is one of those drawbacks of having a straight sponsor. Never did any of my previous ones ask me a question like that. I did go with one to a a fashion show in San Francisco once. That was fun.
To be fair – I actually DO like to go the baseball game (NOT the same as watching it on TV) – so I agreed.
We were driving to the stadium and Greg and Mike were in the front seat talking about the game. I was in the backseat looking out at the afternoon traffic thinking.. Did I bring my sunglasses? Did I bring the sunblock? Did I bring my hat? Check, Check Check. Oh. Did I bring the binocculars? (Those players have great tushes).
I giggled to myself but was brought back to a snapping reality when Greg and Mike started talking about how some lucky fan tonight was going to get to throw out the first pitch. What?
Now, I’m not one to shy a way from a public spotlight. Gosh knows, sometimes I’ve run over to plug the thing in, so it will illuminate on me brightly – but the thought of being singled out and having to stand on the pitchers mound with all those fans screaming or chomping their hotdogs looking at you… well. Let’s just say, I’d rather have my brows trimed by a weedeater.
Thoughts of ballpark fans having beer coming through their nose as they witness the ball lobbing from my hand to a few inches in front me, going.. “Hey! He throws like a girl!” brought back too many memories of true embarassment from little league. Always last to bat, always last picked.. always looked down at by the coach who made a wince when he saw it was my turn to hit .. “maybe you’ll get walked?”
But Greg and Mike pointed out it was 5 Millionth Fan Night. Whomever was the 5 Millionth to cross the thresh hold of the gate was going to be bestowed this historic (well historic for Sacramento) honor. Whew. That was close. At least I knew no snide-practical-joke-playing agent of baseball humour would walk up to me thinking.. “let’s ask HIM.. he looks like he’d throw like a girl”.
As we crossed the parking lot I nearly smudged my nice baseball outfit on the dirty Ford Explorer next to us. We walked across the asphalt and to be completely truthful, I’d completely forgotten our discussion about the 5 millionth and was on to other thoughts.. like.. how awful it would have been to get smudged by that dirty car or.. mmmm HOT DOGS. (Love me some hot dogs.)
I handed my ticket to the agent for scanning and looked upward as I crossed the gate to see what the section was in relation to my ticket but I was being jostled as the Mariachi Band struck up, confetti rained down upon my head and reporters and photographers came running from every direction.
Oh no. Oh my God no. Please say it isn’t so. What are the chances anyway of all these thousands of people.. no, it’s fair to say MILLIONS of people – could I be destined for the privlege (or punishment?) of being forced to publicly humiliate myself from a pitchers mound.
The world seemed slow motion, and I saw folks running my direction.
Only – to push me out of the way to stick the microphone in the face of the woman behind me – Number 5 Million.
Yes. I was 4,999,999. OH THANK YOU JESUS.
I enjoyed watching her throw the ball. She did a great job. I wassss alittle jealous watching her parade around the field on the back of a Corvette convertible. THATTT I would have liked. And, she didddd get free food, season tickets anddd free round trip tickets to hawaii. But, whateverrr. A pile of gold wouldn’t have encouraged me to trade places..
And, after the game began and the Rivercats won, and we gathered our things to leave.. the Jumbo Screen lit up and the Field Announcer asked for the owner of a Ford Explorer to please report to the Information Booth.
It seems he won the dirtiest car in the ballpark contest and was bestowed the honor a free car wash from the local chevron station. Mmmph. I left the ballpark mortification-free. But, someone didnt.