I recently read a story on the Dodgers Nation website titled “Baseball is Too Slow” – My Defense of the Game by Jody Wahl.
Great article and it got me to thinking about times my dad would take me to baseball games. I wanted to jot down one particular memory about a trip to a Dodgers game.
I don’t think it was my first time ever at a Dodgers game but it was certainly one of the first games I ever went with my pops to Chavez Ravine.
One thing that I certainly do remember is that I was FIVE years old. The reason I know I was five is because the age to get in for free at Dodgers Stadium was four years and under.
The entire car ride down the I-5 freeway my dad had a very difficult task on his hands. The job of a father is to teach his children the difference between right and wrong. One of the most difficult and stressful things is to mold a young person into a productive member of society.
With sports I have learned over the years that there is a gray area. My kids for example are not allowed to use the word “hate” … unless of course they are talking about the hated San Francisco Giants.
My father was floating in the gray area with this current trip to see the boys in blue. He was explaining to me the importance of not lying while also telling me that just for today, I was four years old so I could get in the gates for free.
I remember pulling up to the stadium and holding my dad’s hand the whole way up to the gates. The long walk up to the gates my dad was still explaining that lying was bad.
Once we got close to the gate my dad picked me up, probably thinking me not being able to walk under my own power would fool the nice people ripping our ticket stubs. There is no way a kid that doesn’t walk by himself could need his own ticket.
We got to the front of the line and the moment came. Dad casually handed his ticket to the usher probably thinking they would never ask how old the child was in his arms. However, she did.
“How old is he?” she said.
This was it the moment my dad had set us up for that long drive down and the long walk to the gate. Confidently my dad said “Five!”
This then led to an odd stare down between the usher and Dad. Having been taught well, I quickly said “No Dad, I’m Four.”
The nice lady ripped my dad’s ticket stub and graciously let us in. Even as a four, er, five year old, I knew the lady didn’t believe us for one second.
In the aforementioned article from Dodgers Nation, it talks about the game maybe doesn’t need to be slowed down.
“Instead of searching for ways to speed up the game, how about we learn how to slow down. What’s the saying… It’s not the destination, it’s the journey … Baseball is a journey, gather up some family and friends, grab a cold beer, a hot Dodger dog and savor it. Savor every single minute, these are the things memories are built on.”
I don’t remember if the Dodgers won, I honestly am not sure who the Dodgers played. I think it was the Rockies but I honestly can’t be sure.
I do know it was quite the journey, one that I will never forget. This is one of many times my pops took me to a ball game. Thanks for letting me share that memory and thanks dad for always wanting to take me to a game.