bunt sign

Friday, September 22, 2000

My last baseball game of the season tested my theory that you can have fun at any game, regardless of its significance or intensity. Last night's game was the Giants' 152nd, and the one the other 151 had been building toward. They achieved their goal of a division title with ten games to go in the season. Tonight's was the first of those, game 153, and to say it was an anticlimax would be a massive understatement.

The theory held up pretty well, even though the game was one-sided and fairly devoid of action. Eric, David and I met at the Larkspur ferry terminal at 4:30, each of us coming from a different direction. The boat to San Francisco wasn't crowded, so we had room to relax as we cruised across the bay. There was a rim of fog around us, but the boat moved through the water bathed in sunshine.

The walk along the Embarcadero from the Ferry Building to Pacific Bell Park is always colorful. It's a broad walkway with hundreds of people going in the same direction (and, since it's San Francisco, not a few walking, cycling and blading in the opposite direction). You have the bay on one side, and the buses and trolleys on the other. It takes about twenty minutes before you walk under the Bay Bridge and the bricks and steel of the magnificent new ballpark are suddenly in front of you.

Tonight we were sitting in the top deck in far left field. Even though the game was a sellout, there were a few empty seats around us. The crowd as a whole was quieter, and much less lively than the raucous group that had celebrated the championship the night before. But you can always find interesting people to observe or talk to.

the view from section 333

As we were entering the gate, a man asked if we had an extra ticket. As it happened, we did, since the people Eric and David had invited were unable to attend. So Eric gave him the ticket, as soon as he was sure this guy was someone who really wanted to see the game, and not a scalper.

We sat with him throughout the game, and he turned out to be from Richmond, Virginia, in town on business. He told us he'd been to every ballpark in the major leagues, except the new one in Houston. This was his first visit to Pac Bell Park.

We can always find something interesting to talk about at a ballgame. It's been a long season, so there's a lot of history just this year to consider. We share what we know about the players in the game. And when the action slows down on the field, we catch up on what's going on in our lives.

The Giants team was about as lifeless as the crowd tonight, playing a bit flat after last night's excitement, and they lost to the Diamondbacks, 7-1. The game was a short one, about two and a half hours, and we were back on the ferry by ten thirty. The return boat was crowded, and we stood for the whole 45 minutes or so. It was a clear night by then, and we marveled at the beauty of the City as we sped past it, back toward Marin.

We shared a lot of laughs tonight, and the game itself was incidental. But, if it hadn't been for the game, there would have been no excuse for the three of us to spend a Friday night together in San Francisco.

previousbunt signemailnext

Latest recommendations:

Aimee has some big news!

Headspace is back!

Other recent recommendations can be found on the links page.
Subscribe to the list to be notified of updates.

Some find it pleasant dining on pheasant;
Those things roll off my knife.