Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Old Bait and Switch

I have been avoiding this blog because baseball and I have not been on great terms lately and if you don’t have anything nice to say… well, you know how it goes.  Nik and I have been planning to get a dog this offseason for awhile now. Once we realized that his team wasn’t going to the playoffs, we decided we’d leave Wednesday (as in yesterday) to drive to California and pick the little guy up. Then Nik was going to have to fly back to Tampa for two and a half weeks for instructs (did I mention that he has to go to instructs this year? awesome) and he’d come back and we’d spend the offseason in LA.

Well, the night before the last game of the season, Nik was told he’d be going to Trenton to help with playoffs. His flight was at 830 Sunday morning. Translation: It is/was possible for Nik to come back from Trenton the 16th and start instructs the 18th aka ruining every plan we had. After my initial panic and many, many discussions about what the proper course of action would be, we came up with a semblance of a plan.

So here I find myself in California, ready to pick up the puppy tomorrow and drive back to Tampa with Nik’s mom this weekend. Bless her for being willing to do it. Then we (Nik, puppy and I) will spend about three weeks in Tampa before we drive back across the country. Not gonna lie, I’m feeling a little bad for myself and the puppy, of course.

I know the baseball gods are laughing in my face right now. You dared to make plans, heh heh heh, I’ll show you. So lesson learned. Never again will I tempt fate by thinking things will be easy and uncomplicated. On the bright side, this little guy will be all mine tomorrow!!! 

                                                           He's the one on the right

And, yes, you can expect every future post to be about him. Sorry: ) 

Monday, July 23, 2012

My Bob Evans Sunday Funday

Yesterday was so meant to be one of those days. You know those days. The ones where nothing particularly bad happens but all of the little disappointments and exasperations threaten to make you sit alone in your car and scream (which I did not, do by the way). The ones where you just learn to laugh because, really, it’s all kind of funny when you think about it.

I’m going to try a background, scenario format here or else I’ll go on forever.

Background: We are in Bradenton, last day of a four-game road trip. Decide to go to a local church that starts at 10 a.m. about 10 minutes from the hotel.

Scenario: We leave at 10:03 courtesy of Nik and his insistence on getting 8 hours of sleep no matter what. Blue dot on iPhone misleads us. Curse technology. End up backtracking almost two miles before we see the baseball field and realize things have gone terribly wrong. Find the church. Parking lot deserted. Sign in window, closed for renovations, meeting in Sarasota (20 miles south).

Background: Starting pitchers don’t have to be at the field until two hours before game time at home and whenever the last bus is when the team is away. Therefore, they always get the late checkout room at the hotel.

Scenario: Bus leaves at 2:30. Late checkout 2:30. Game starts at 5. What am I supposed to do in Bradenton for 2 ½ hours? Nik suggests I stay in the room as long as I can. The front desk calls at 3, I ignore it. The cleaning lady knocks at 3:30. Are you staying another night or do you have a late checkout? Late checkout. What time are you supposed to leave? Well, I just don’t know (not proud of that one) but ya know. I’ll find out for you. The boss lady comes. You were supposed to leave at 2:30. Really? I am so embarrassed. Let me just gather up my belongings and go then. It’s 3:45.

Background: An hour and 15 minutes to kill, no smartphone aka no way to know anything that’s around me other than the field.

Scenario: I leave the hotel as it begins to sprinkle. Sprinkle turns into downpour. I go to the field. Don’t want to get out of the car. Have to go to the bathroom. Remember I saw a McDonald’s somewhere and decide I need an Oreo McFlurry. Sit damp on a stool looking out at the storm, eating my McFlurry and wondering whether we’re gonna play this game or not.

Background: You can only sit at McDonald’s for so long. It’s still raining but softer now and I want to be at the field in case the game starts on time.

Scenario: The parking at Bradenton sucks with a capital S. There is none. You can park at businesses for $5, which you know I’m not doing because I’m cheap and entitled. So I park 3 ½ blocks away from the stadium and walk shivering in the rain. I wait outside the booth, get my tickets and go inside. I find a seat under the covering but when the wind blows, the rain gets me pretty good. It’s 5. It’s 5:30. It’s 5:45. The fans are getting restless. Many left after the giant bolt of lightning and very angry thunder. It’s 6. A man has decided to run onto the field and use the tarp as a slip n’ slide. The police are not amused. He is escorted out. It’s 6: 30. We’re listening to Yakety Yak on the loudspeakers. A woman leaving opens her umbrella and all of the water on it falls on my head. It’s 6:45. The grounds crew is sweeping the tarp again. It’s 7. The tarp is being taken off. The skies are clearing. Announcement: the game will start at 7: 20, fans cheer. It’s 7: 10. The lake in left field is clearly deep enough to support marine life. Nik starts throwing toss with the catcher. Announcement: due to field conditions and coming weather, the game is cancelled.

Sunday Funday!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Spectator Sport

One of my favorite past times is listening to people in the stands who either know nothing about the minor leagues and guess or people who think they know everything about the minor leagues and explain it loudly to those around them. In both cases, the inaccuracies are usually hilarious.

Last night I was  lucky enough to sit in front of the former. Two middle-aged women who knew nothing but didn't let that stop them from hazarding many [wildly incorrect] guesses. It started with the usual, how much money do they make? Not sure why people are always so interested in that but it's a common question. Lady 2 responded somewhere around $22,000 I think. I'm surprised I didn't laugh out loud. Lady 1 is that all? Oh, if you only knew.

Then things turned to slightly offensive. Lady 1, this is so different than a major league game. You can tell why those guys are in the majors and these aren't. Ouch. Let's remember every major leaguer was a minor leaguer once--geesh. And then the kicker. Lady 2, it must be such a hard life knowing that you're nothing. Just nothing. Wow! Beyond unnecessary. I might have actually mouthed Wow. I was very tempted to turn around and ask when the last time they had an autograph request was. (I do realize people asking for autographs isn't what takes people from nothing to something but you know what I mean).

I could talk forever about the implications of these ways of thinking and how harmful they are and how nobody wins but, you know, it's all part of the game I suppose.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Big Move

Well, we finally gave up our life of luxury, went the way of most baseball couples and moved in with a host family... or a host person... also known as my Grandma. We've been here for five days now and I just don't know where to begin.

Perhaps the downgrade of our king size bed to a full is a good place to start. The first night was pretty sleepless for both of us. The second night, I was awoken in the middle of the night because Nik was literally laying on top of me. The next night, I woke up in the middle of the night and Nik was glaring at me (apparently I'm not great at sharing the covers). Just when we were starting to figure it out, Nik left on a road trip. First time this season I've been excited about him being gone.

Also, our room is tiny. My grandma lives alone and has three bedrooms and four closets (including a walk-in one) and yet there is no room for any of our stuff. We've already put 2/3 of it in storage but I still regularly trip over backpacks and suitcases and clothes in the four feet of walking space around the bed. The reason there's no space is because my grandma needs to be on one of those extreme couponing shows. 10 for $10--she's all over it. Four bottles of rubbing alcohol, five cartons of half&half, six boxes of kleenex, 36 rolls of toilet paper. It's slightly out of hand.

But we love being with Grammy (and her tiny poodle Rocky) and we especially love not paying rent. Everything else makes a good story and we're loving our new adventure as house guests. It's starting to feel like we're finally earning our minor league stripes!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Oh, Debby

This is usually a dock.

Not so much today.

And this is usually a baseball field.

Not so much today.

(This is the Clearwater Threshers stadium by the way--they're the High A Phillies team about 15 miles west of us.)

Monday, June 18, 2012

If You Give a Girl a Husband...

We're fresh off the All Star Break. Three glorious days off. We spent them flying across the country to go to Nik's brother's wedding in California. It was the most time we've spent together since the offseason. I loved every minute of it but the second I left for work this morning, I felt that old familiar pang. We'd been apart five minutes and I missed him. Like really really bad. Pathetic but hear me out.

You know it's weird but the more time we spend together, the harder it is to be apart. When Nik was in Charleston and I was in Tampa last year, I thought it was absolute torture. But now it's like every time I see him is a tease. Like someone putting a bowl of ice cream in front on you and only letting you have one bite every so often and a scoop or two on the weekend. A taste is not enough! (that is completely not sexual by the way). Does that make sense?

I'm not whining right now just so you know. I don't want it to come off like that because I know how lucky I am to see him at all. It's just something I've noticed in my own experience. It seems like when I had the chance to be completely on my own, I was sad but I had to adjust and make my own plans, get into my own groove and have my own routine. But now our lives are intertwined in a way that makes it difficult for me to feel established on my own. Instead of living my life, I'm waiting for Nik to get home. And I do it to myself, I know I do. But gosh it's just so much easier than making the effort to distract myself or better yet find something I truly enjoy and do it.

So until Wednesday at about 1 am, it's just me and Beary Manilow watching Euro Cup, eating cereal for dinner, missing Nik (obvi) and holding down the fort. Not a bad way to spend a road trip, right?

Meet Beary Manilow-the first Valentine's gift I ever got as a wife.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Life and Stuff

So I’ve been a very bad blogger lately. And I’m starting to get that guilty, nagging, disappointed with yourself feeling I used to get when I’d promise to write in my journal and inevitably didn’t. I’m not sure who I was promising that to. Future readers? The journal itself? Anyway, the point is I’m going to be better and you should ignore my journal when it tells you not to hold your breath.

Seriously, the thing is that I’m like really, really lazy. I have ideas and time and zero motivation. It’s so much more fulfilling to drown your sorrows/boredom in strange and random TV shows you’ve never seen before. In fact, after yesterday I have now seen at least one episode of every USA Original Series except Blue Collar—quite the feat, right? My life is sad - I’ll tell you all about it in a future post that I will write really soon because I’m a regular blogger now!