Friday, March 18, 2011
I'm feeling much better now, thank you.
Sooooooooo...we've been a little dormant from the west side of things for a couple of weeks, bloggily. See, I lost a fight with a wine glass. Well, maybe it was more of a draw, given that I didn't end up in the garbage, shattered into bloody pieces. But it left me at somewhat of a typing disadvantage, given the...stitches. I'll go light on details, for the sake of the squeamish. And I DEFINITELY won't post the picture I took in the ER. But! Tally ho.
And things are warming up! Like, for real now! Know how I know? NO, it's not because the Champagne Mango sorbetto is back! (Hey, did you know the Champagne Mango sorbetto is back?) It's because my mom got us Phillies tickets for the first home series. Go Mom!
See, this is a tradition for us, given that both of our birthdays always fall around the start of the baseball season. And we've been going to games together for years--it was really my mom who instilled in me my love of the Phillies and baseball. She's an old Philadelphia girl who grew up in East Landsdowne, and it was her desire to get back closer to her hometown that brought the two of us to Delaware when I was a kid. So that first spring that we were here, she knew I was miserable, having left all of my friends in West Virginia and struggling (as was to be expected) to make new ones. And Phillies Phranks (back when they used to be around and you could buy packs at Acme) carried coupons for cheap tickets. This was a couple of years before the World Series run in '93 and the Phillies were still firmly ensconced in the Vet, so there were always plenty of good seats available. I'd only ever seen pro ball on television, so when we got to the stadium I was blown away by how BIG and REAL everything was. I mean, the Vet was HUGE from the outside--and obviously on the inside as well. (We never did sit in the 700 level, though our first visit to the 600 level did inspire us to bring binoculars to the next game...not a glove.) And that infamous AstroTurf was so GREEN in person! And you could see Lenny Dykstra's chaw-spit stains on the turf around him in center field!
That squad of Phillies--Dykstra, Daulton, Terry Mulholland, et al.--they weren't maybe the best role models. Shoot, most of them weren't really even particularly good ball players. (Pete Incaviligia, anyone?) The picture of Mulholland on the computer desktop at Penn...totally ironic. And I'm not going to pick at our collective Mitch Williams scab. That would be cruel.
But time passes. I moved to Vermont and then Seattle, so what had been two or three games a year for my mom and I became two or three in eight years. We did see a couple of great Mariners games, believe it or not, the couple of times she could make it out during the season. (Quick aside: Jamie Moyer is a Seattle institution, even as popular he is in Philadelphia. So watching him finally win a World Series after being the best all-around guy the Mariners had for so long...it was really sweet. Seattle was collectively really happy for him.) But ultimately it wasn't the Phillies, so it wasn't the same. But now I'm here! And she's close by in Cape May, so it's easier than ever for us to go to games together. And of course Citizens Bank Park is a great stadium. But it's hard not to be a little nostalgic for the old days when the team sucked, the stadium sucked A LOT, and we could get face value tickets for a random Tuesday night game and have a section to ourselves. The hot dogs are a whole lot better these days, though...