One time, a rotund man tried to sell me cocaine and heroine on a new york street corner at 2 in the morning. But that’s not really relevant because I wasn’t in new york last night, I was in Boston.
I went to the BoSox game against the Orioles at Fenway on Saturday night for my friend Allison’s 21st. Allison is an Orioles fan and because I have no sports affiliation, I, too, became an Os fan. When we checked into our hotel (which was just bizarre, the pool was in the middle of the lobby area and there was a giant chess set right next to that) we ran into a heinous woman and her husband. She looked at my Baltimore shirt and said, “Boy, you sure stand out in that bright orange.” No shit, lady. But at least I looked great in that orange; it complimented my glowing tan.
Then the four of us (me, Allison, Lisa, and Christina) took a stroll. A looong stroll. A half-hour stroll in the wrong direction, away from Fenway. But don’t worry, we made Lisa take off her Orioles hat and go ask somebody where on earth we were and finally got on a T going in the right direction.
The game was great, and obviously the Os lost. There were two major flaws in our stay at Fenway, however. The first was that there was a 7-year-old sitting behind us, heckling us for being Orioles fan. I don’t think that anyone should ever heckle an Orioles fan – its a hard enough life already. And second? The people selling beer don’t sell in the bleachers. What’s that about? People with cheap seats want beer too, yanno. Actually, I think that people with cheap seats want MORE beer.
After the game and buying a $4 ice cream cone, we found our way to a package store (massholes had no idea what we were talking about when we asked them where the nearest packy was. Oh CT’s blue laws). Allison managed to stow a bottle of smirnoff in her shirt; I was deeply impressed.
We eventually made our way to the Baseball Tavern, which is where the story really begins. We first made friends with a bunch of sailors up for the holiday weekend from Annapolis. They invited us back to their boat and said they would rock our worlds. I’m still trying to figure out why we DIDN’T do that.
Then these two guys came over and started giving us a hard time about being Os fans. They had such thick Boston accents that at times, I had literally NO idea what was going on. They were probably in their early 30s and said that they sold beer in Fenway. And had for the past 16 years. That’s Sox dedication. They also bought us drinks. And by drinks, I mean we took Washington apple shots in honor of our great president, George Washington. There was a toast about cherry trees and wooden teeth, but there were so many R’s involved, I couldn’t tell you what the guy actually said.
AND then, this older man at the bar started to talk to us. He said his name was Mike and that he was an umpire for MLB. We sort of ignored that because really, why would an ump be a bar like this? AND then, I saw the playback of the game when the Orioles manager got thrown off the field (obviously it was on, we were in a sports bar). And there was Mike, on the TV. I was SO excited. I turned to Lisa and Christina and was like, “Look! It’s the man! On the TV! It’s the man!!” They still didn’t believe though.
That’s when Allison spotted Mike’s ring. It was huge and gold and very manly. It was a ring for umpiring the World Series. That’s when we all believed. That is also when Mike started dancing. And so did I. Not WITH Mike, per se, but at the same time. Let me tell you about the music this place was playing. I never looked, but I’m convinced there was no DJ, just an ipod of a middle aged man put on shuffle. “What Do Tigers Dream Of?” even played. You know, the song from the Hangover. I enjoyed every second of all the random songs.
Mike asked the bartender if he would go upstairs and ask if they would play “Don’t Stop Believin'” and he did. And as we started to dance and sing the second chorus, they turned the song off. Very audibly from upstairs we all heard some man yell, “What kind of fucking bar is this?” I mean, turning off Journey in the middle of a song is a major party foul and I felt incomplete without finishing the song so I empathize with that shouting man.
After an awkward cab ride back to the hotel, harassing some guy in the lobby who had a pizza menu (and getting him in trouble with his girlfriend), and eating a large cheese pizza and cheesy bread, we fell into a slumber only to awake Sunday morning to leave at 9:30 and eat McDonald’s breakfast on the way. I haven’t been awake or coherent for McDonald’s breakfast since I was 10. Eating that egg mcmuffin was just the cherry on my sundae of a weekend.
O. Here’s the link to Mike’s bio on the MLB website. http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/official_info/umpires/bio.jsp?id=2340