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Rhodester at the ballpark

Rhodester on the train platform in front of AT&T Park, a couple of hours before game #1 of the 2010 World Series gets underway

On a whim today, we decided to get on a train and take the half-mile trip to the area of AT&T Park here in San Francisco, because today the San Francisco Giants are facing off with the Texas Rangers in Game one of the 2010 World Series.

We’re not exactly big baseball fans, but we don’t have anything against it — we’ve just been too busy to pay much attention.

We last paid attention in 1984, and yes, we realize that was a really long time ago.

We lived in San Diego then, when the Padres won the National League Pennant and went to the World Series for the first time. We lived close to Jack Murphy Stadium (now Qualcomm Stadium) and we could see the lights and hear the roar of the crowd on game nights. We remember Steve Garvey hitting some kind of incredible fly ball that won something-or-other for the team during the pennant race.. oh, that was exciting!

We went in person to a few of those games at the nearby stadium while dating a girl who was a Padres fan, and endured the humiliation of her explaining the rules loudly as the game was played. But we liked her, so we continued to go.

We learned a lot, about the game AND her.

Nowadays these baseball teams have their own stadiums that they don’t have to share with football — the Giants have AT&T Park while the Padres play at Petco Park down there in San Diego. It’s all very commercial.

But the palpable excitement of an underdog team going all the way to the world series is something we’ve not forgotten since the Padres, and the fervor is the same here in San Francisco with the Giants, even if they DO have their very own billion-dollar ballpark. We understand that they’ve never won the series and haven’t made it all the way to the end very often, so there’s this feeling of electrifying hopefulness that permeates the city right now.

But if we were a true fan, we suppose, we’d be somewhere actually watching Game #1 of the series while clad in our own orange and black jersey, instead of sitting in a Starbucks a block away and blogging about it. But we’re doing this just because we can. We live in San Francisco now.. we can do a lot of things!

We came down here to check out the crowd, which is pretty much a sea of orange and black (the Giant’s colors) as far as the eye can see. Finding a place to sit and log-on has been the challenge you’d imagine it to be. We got a nice start at Panera Bread a few blocks from the stadium, but after finding that the wifi provider blocks the very blog you’re reading because they think it’s PORN (we KNOW, HUH?) we decided to move on.

Starbucks is never a favorite of ours, but the orange and black clad crowd has moved out now because the game has started, and the Starbucks wifi provider doesn’t block our porn site.

We seldom enjoy crowds, but this one has been entertaining..

  • The multitude of men wearing cardboard signs that say “Need tickets!”
  • The hobos who’ve managed to snag Giants jerseys and make themselves up in the team colors so as to make a killing in handouts as the crowd goes in.
  • The man on the train earlier who shouted out to all of us, “Hey, why is this train so damn QUIET? We’re all going to the WORLD SERIES, people!” The train wasn’t quiet after that.. he got the result he was looking for.
  • The cops, EVERYWHERE. Not only San Francisco PD, but agencies from all over the bay area here to help out, plus the train station near the stadium that’s thronged with officers from homeland security. We talked with one of them.. nice fellow. We were glad we didn’t bring our bomb, though.
  • The Texas Rangers fan who entered the men’s room in his Rangers jersey.. brave fellow!
  • Tiny babies clad in orange and black, whooping enthusiastically from their strollers as mommy and daddy push them along toward the ballpark.

Yes, we’re caught-up in the energy of it all. And now we’re actually watching the game, because the Starbucks manager came out and placed a huge widescreen TV on a platform and turned it on.

What in the hell are we doing BLOGGING?


crowd on game day

Rhodester's view from the Starbucks just outside AT&T Park as the 2010 World Series gets underway.

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