Smitty and I went to a ballgame – Brooklyn Cyclones vs the Staten Island Yankees, at the Cyclones home field on Coney Island.
It was a great date. Smitty said she thought the seats were kind of high up and I guess she might have been right, since I couldn’t actually touch any of the players without leaning forward a few rows. But you could see the movement on the pitches and feel the violence when a player swung through a pitch.
This is low minor leagues -short season A ball – and the Cyclones looked younger and less seasoned than the Yankees in general. The Cyclones made two errors and their starter was wild; the difference in the game was one inning where he walked the bases full (there was a single in there somewhere) and inevitably paid for it.
Yankees won, 4-2 and if you’re a Mets fan, there’s something so familiar there, it only makes it so much sweeter when the worm turns (I have real hopes for next season -really!)
But in the meanwhile, we got the Weiner Race (won by – Ketchup!), a boy of 5 or 6 trying to throw a ball through the dot over the ‘i’ in the Dime Savings Bank sign (good try but no), the little girl around the same age who smoked Sandy the Seagull (the mascot, not one of the players) in a race from first to third. She politely handed her sandals to King Henry, the Cyclones’ master of ceremonies and Court Jester (I say he reminds me of Stubby Kaye; Smitty said no, Stubby Kaye was hot – I’m gaining fifty pounds tomorrow) before starting the race; seeing her determination rounding second (and seeing Sandy collapse on the grass after the race, clutching his heart) was priceless. And there was a great fireworks display after – I get the impression that’s every Friday night, in case you’re thinking about going.
We walked Coney just a little after the game. I find the place spooky but Smitty virtually grew up there and has lots of memories so we’ll go back and I’m really looking forward to that.
The trip home was really the icing on the cake. A coven of college kids – maybe six of them – got onto our subway car at Coney Island (end of the line or, in our case, beginning) and rode most of the way through Brooklyn, juggling in a moving car! There were two very good jugglers and the others in the group just kept throwing the couple of extra balls (don’t ask me why there were extra balls but there were) at each other so it was very funny chaos at the far end of the car.
It was typical New York late night – the couple across from us around 70ish, checking their cellphones and reading in synch and, according to Smitty, dressed alike (if one person’s wearing blue and shorts and a hat and the other person’s wearing gray and Capri’s (not that I know Capri’s from long pants) and no hat, I don’t see how that can be dressed alike but don’t tell Smitty that, she’ll explain it to you and believe me).
And the two Asian kids who carried a whole pizza onto the train, ate a couple slices and left carrying the rest after two stops (this is Brooklyn, a pizzeria on every corner – if you’re willing to go two stops on the train for pizza, it must be good).
I love baseball for itself but it is amazing how it seems to collect slices of life for embroidery, especially at the minor league level where everything is still human-sized (including the prices). It’s a magical game, not least for all the riotous, vivid life it seems to attract.