Sunday, August 4, 2013

Not the Front Row, but I'll Take It

Saturday night I went to see another Orioles game (2nd one this week) with Sitcom Kelly and her Sitcom Sister and Brother-in-Law.  Going to the games is getting to be pretty commonplace, I agree, but this time, against the Seattle Mariners, we got to use Sitcom Kelly’s Mom’s company seats, 10 rows behind home plate.

A reasonable person might not have gone, just because of the weather.  It rained all afternoon on Saturday, but after examining the weather maps and calculating all possible scenarios, I decided to go and use my sure-fire rain prevention method.  I brought an umbrella.  I used it to get from my car to the subway station, and then I barely felt a drop for the rest of the night.  Works every time.

This was most UNLIKE the time in 2010 when she and I saw the Mariners from Sitcom Mom’s seats, when it drizzled all night.  I wrote about it here.
There was nothing fun about wearing the full body condom all night long.
On the way down to the ballpark, I had to pass the convention center where the Brony convention is going on.  Between coming to and leaving from the park, I probably passed about a dozen Bronies.  I was hoping for something a little more colorful, but all practically the same: 18-22 year old, pale, skinny guys with dark hair and black t-shirts.  They looked like they got lost on the way to a Twilight convention.  Did Edward Cullen make a guest appearance on “My Little Pony?”  (Only one guy broke the mold… he had sandy hair and was much chunkier.)

If I had Misty’s secret ninja camera skills, I would have gotten some pictures.  But my camera is an actual camera and not a cell phone, and I’d have hated to make them look any mopier than they already did.

I met up with everyone at The Bullpen, where SK and I are “VIPs.”  Luckily, they got there before I did and were able to grab a table for four, so we didn't have to stand around and drink. 

At one point, Sitcom Sister and her husband got up to go grab a bite from the street vendors, when we noticed something wrong with the table.  At the same time, both SK and I stopped leaning forward on the table and the damn thing nearly toppled over.  It was almost like a whole leg was missing.  I took a look and there was about a 3-inch gap between the end of the leg and the floor.  That put the table at such a severe angle, it looked like a piece of furniture from Tim Burton’s house.

Luckily, I’m a rather inventive problem solver, and came up with this fix:
Miller Lite and Natty Boh, working together to keep people from spilling their beer.
I made the mistake of pre-crushing the Lite can a little too much, so I had to add a 16-oz Natty Boh to make up the difference.  Eventually, the bar staff noticed our fix, and then promptly found a screw-in footer for the table leg, which had been kicked out.  They admired our solution and said they’d fix the table later.  No wonder they gave us those VIP cards!

One of the best parts of getting Sitcom Mom’s seats is that they’re padded!  All the lower bowl seats between 3rd base and 1st are nicely padded.  It’s ironic, because I’d think that anyone with enough disposable income that they can afford these season tickets probably have enough padding on their ass.  Then again, they can probably afford personal trainers as well.  Regardless, I enjoyed the comfort.
In case this seems disorienting, this is the row in front of me, with the seat bottoms up.
This was our basic view:
Darkening clouds creep in over the Eyesore Hilton.
One little fella was having a grand time sitting up so close.  In fact, I think he thought he was backing up the catcher.
He would crouch down like that before every pitch.
It’s definitely cool to sit up that close.  You can see the ball break and hear it hiss through the air until it pops the catcher’s mitt.  The only downside is the netting.  It completely kills what would be some very grand action shots.
Nick Markakis looks one in.
Another cool thing about this area is that team scouts sit there.  At least I think they’re team scouts… they keep score, take notes, use hand-timers, and none of them wear team gear.  I don’t think there are many people who do all that for shits and giggles.
I saw at least four.  The scout whose head you can’t see is holding a hand-timer.  Plus, you can see the guy who operates the scoreboard readout that tells you what kind of pitch it was.  He punches it into the little machine sitting on the wall.
The game was pretty entertaining, in that there were 6 home runs hit.  Unfortunately, the Mariners hit 4 of them, against the Orioles’ 2.  Still, the O’s kept clawing back, with an especially nice rally after their manager Buck Showalter got tossed from the game for arguing balls and strikes from the dugout.  We had a great spot to watch the fireworks.  Unfortunately, we weren't close enough to hear what was being said.
This exchange got a louder ovation than the O’s home runs did.
The Orioles were down by two in the eighth, when Seattle hit their last home run, to go up by four.  That was the signal for most to leave the park for the night.
Even the Oriole Bird was ready to jump.  Don’t let the big smile fool you.
We stuck it out, but our presence didn't do any good, and the Birds went down in flames, 8-4.  I blame my orange Chris Davis jersey, which I hadn't worn before.  I’ll give it another shot in 2 weeks, before I hang it up for the season.


  1. I've never sat that close at a ball game. Even though the Rockies suck so, so horribly, I bet it'd still be a fun experience.

    Also, love the full body condom picture. It reminds me of that great Naked Gun scene.

    1. It was really amazing. I’ve been front row in other sections… outfield wall, club level or upper deck, but it’s completely different behind the plate. You can pick up all the little stuff, like how much the ball breaks. Makes things much more interesting.

      Note to self: Use the poncho for the next Halloween party and go as a condom. OR, put a feather on my head and go as a French tickler.

  2. Great seats, but the full-body condom would have been a deal-breaker for me. Not even a huge fan of the smaller versions. But I digress...

    I missed the Hens game this year with you. Keep me in mind next year. Unless it's raining.

    1. Luckily, I didn't need it this week... I went bareback. But who knows what I picked up from the seat?

    2. CLAMidiya you are in Baltimore !!!!! Now that was Funny......

    3. You can still get crabs though...

  3. I love that kid pretending to be the catcher!

    1. He was really adorable, and very well behaved for such a young age, being dragged out into a rather chaotic environment.

  4. You look hermetically sealed for that rainy game.

    We sat in the padded seats at PNC once this year. Two rows behind the visiting dugout. It was too close. Had to constantly be aware of screaming line drive foul balls. Felt like I invaded the players' personal space. I like my seats, around twenty row up behind the visitor's batting circle.

    1. I might have been annoyed by the backstop netting for photographic reasons, but I’m sure glad it was there. It takes the risk of getting smashed by a foul tip, right out of play. I would be nervous about those close-up dugout seats as well.

      I wonder if I was wearing the full poncho, and someone attacked me with a blow dryer, if they could shrink-wrap me inside the thing?

  5. Damn. I just commented and then I got an error when I posted. (Twice) I think this is what I said . . .

    I have had the opportunity to sit in those seats once or twice. I used to work for a firm downtown as the evening secretary. Since I was usually the last one there and there were times they couldn't get rid of the firm's tickets, I would sometimes score them. The seats are very cushy. But that nest is annoying. Necessary, but evil.

    1. That’s how Sitcom Kelly has gotten them most frequently in the past. They’re trying to give them away, and her Mom sends up the Bat Signal. And when it comes to seats that good, I’m always available.


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