Friday, March 20, 2009


The way it's meant to be played - outdoors in the sunshine on a hot day in Arizona. Of course, Minnesota fans will soon have the opportunity to enjoy baseball, the way it was meant to be played, on cold, rainy, hot and humid, then cold and snowy days in Minnesota. And it won't be long before everyone is asking the question that's been on my mind for several years. "What were we thinking?"

I have gone to several games at the Metrodome which I would not have attended had they been played outdoors. A couple were on nights when it was snowing and slippery. A few more were on nights when without air conditioning, I'd never have left home.

I have tired of hearing my favorite Minnesota broadcasters whining about the balls that got lost in the Teflon ceiling. Yesterday, at a spring training day in Phoenix, I could rarely follow the path of the ball as it soared high up into and blended with the soft white clouds layering over the sun. Of course, I'm an old lady, so maybe my eyesight is failing. I am reduced to betting quietly where this lost ball will land, then watching which way the players are running and which spectators are reflexively reaching up to catch the ball to learn whether I should be ducking and cringing.

There is nostalgia too for the experience of the ball park hot dog. I confess that I'm always disappointed by the ball park hot dog experience. Gummy bun, teeny wieny, messy mustard and tiny, nearly invisible pieces of sweet pickle from the itty bitty packets - ultimately I have to work a little to convince myself that this is a great experience. Actually, I love going out to the ball park. It's so essentially American. I'll be back for more outdoor baseball and ball park hot dogs just as soon as I cool off and recover from my last perfect afternoon.

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