A number of years ago, I attended a Dog Day baseball game at a minor league park (The Nat!) in Vancouver... Where the canines are not unlike their owners: kind, friendly, and unable to pronounce "about." For years, I wanted to experience this on a major league scale. And today I did, only to be reminded be careful what you wish for.
The family DeShields got to the park early, including our schnauzer-poodle-terrier Dog-lino (aka The Shark, aka Sharkie). Note: I would have protected Shark's identity, but I'm a little too sleepy to photoshop Delino's head.
In what has become a tradition, we were greeted in the parking lot by the first and most powerful diaper change of the night (performed on the back of my trunk). Which perfectly set the mood for what was next - a line that stretched to the horizon.
Between being undermanned, under-communicating with the entire Stadium staff (several of whom told us they didn't even know this event was happening), and having to go through proof of vaccination for EVERY DOG, the event initally looked to be a Titanic-level disaster. Until the Delino took matters in his own hands. It's amazing what one can do, and where one can go, when he walks with confidence.
I'd feel remorse, but bypassing the huddled masses meant I got to rub elbows with the kid actress who played RAMONA!!! (A Delino literary favorite from way back when)
Also in attendance, the skateboard dog from youtube - seen here sharing the stage with the winner of his lookalike contest.
And of course, OUR DAD.
I wanted to tell him who I wrote for, but in front of his REAL kids... well, that seemed cold. We also got to see some awesome dogs and owners best described as, well, inventive.
Finally, with minutes to spare, we got to march around the warning track and the perimeter of the field, with security guards continually screaming "KEEP MOVING." To quote Brad Pitt in True Romance, "Don't condescend me, I'll F---ing Kill You."
We reached our seats in the All You Can Eat Pavillion... where, for the first time EVER, not a single person got tossed or arrested. My wife was eating for two, and apparently I was as well. Once again, I made it through 3.5 hot dogs, only to hit the that wall where another bite might have crushed my heart. My body gave up on me, like a marathon runner's.
I also discovered that nachos, two year olds, and dogs in close proximity results in all said parties getting coated.
By the second inning, things calmed down. Sharkie settled into her $25 seat (after eating her body weight in dogs and chips). Our son kept cheering for the mets. We made a new friend, who kept finding her way to our grub.
And then the home runs started raining down. One after the other, some surprisingly close to our gluttonous seats. No human or canine was more excited than Dog-Lino!
In the end, the Dodgers won and my intestines cried out in defeat. Though I can barely see straight and feel like I went twelve rounds with Piston Hurricane, I'd do it again in a second. Just without the nachos.