Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love, Comiskey Style

I am reminded of love this Valentine's Day. How can you not, with every advertiser practically beating you over the head with it this past week. Kevin's Oriole card of the day reminded me of past ballpark experiences.

I could choose the time in 1997, where I went to Comiskey with a friend. The game was a low scoring affair where we were able to get out early for a night game. I went over by my girlfriend's place and she wanted to go for a walk.

I thought nothing of it, so I went. By the time I got back, every one of our friends knew what had happened. It seems that it had been planned all night long by my now ex-girlfriend. I was devastated, mostly because I was blindsided. It turned out that she was seeing one of our mutual friends behind my back, who was there that night. I have moved on to much better things since then.

I could tell the tale of taking a female friend to Comiskey in 1998 and falling in love during the fireworks. The White Sox hit three home runs that game (at least). All I really remember is that there were a lot of fireworks being shot off. That relationship ended horribly. In fact it was the worst breakup I have ever experienced and not because it broke my heart. It tried to break my spirit. The ramifications from that split still last today. I won't get into anything specific, but I never want to go through that type of breakup again. The only clue I will give you is this.

I will tell you about a ticket purchase in June 2007 for a game in August. Tracey hadn't been to a White Sox game in years and I hadn't been to the park since 2004. I didn't have the money to be throwing around, so I just watched or listened to the games wherever I could.

We picked a date at random. Saturday, August 15, 2007. We figured that the Sox would either be in the middle of an exciting pennant race or it would be a good game with plenty of leg room, like a late 90's Expos game. Either way, it would be great. We would see White Sox baseball and that is always good in my book. If they lost, it would be a chance to soak in the atmosphere of the park.

By pure luck, Jim Thome was chasing his 500th home run. He hadn't had a homer in the previous 9 games in the homestand. That night and Sunday afternoon were his last chances to get it at home. Every time that Jim walked up to the plate, everyone stood and cheered as their eyes were fixated on him. Flashes from cameras went off with every pitch. It was very exciting! The entire crowd seemed to almost will the ball in Thome's wheelhouse. There were some exciting pops, but nothing went out of the park. Jim would hit his 500th the next day in his final at bat in the ninth.

The White Sox ended up losing the close game to the Angels, but Tracey and I were both happy. We saw a well played game and we were part of the excitement of Jim Thome's pursuit. Sometime this year, we will pay for the two images that were taken of us at the game. But for now, this low res thumbnail that I lifted off the photo site will have to do. It's still a great memory and it was still a great night.

It seems fitting that we were delayed by one game of seeing history. Jim Thome seems to be having all sorts of delays in getting that home run ball to the Hall of Fame. It truly is the season for crappy weather in Illinois.


Bart McClaughry said...

Great story, I really enjoyed the picture of you and Tracy though.

White Sox Cards said...

It's a shame that it's so small. When we have a little extra cash to spend we'll get an actual copy. They keep those game shot photos for years on the website.

On Base Autos said...

Great story. None of my ex's have anything to do with ballgames. There was one that had a tire factory, pepper spray, and a dog but that is another story.

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