I’m not a big fan of watching baseball on TV, but I do enjoy the occasional (no more than once a year, please) trip to the ballpark. I’ve been to the bigs, where you get top-notch ball without too many frills, but there’s a lot to be said for the small minor league stadiums, where you can get up close to the players, and where the management tries to keep the “entertainment” coming. And then there are the promotions, where fans are enticed by the promise of giveaways, or fireworks, or discounts, or like last night, food. It turned out to be “Belly Buster Night,” where for $12, we got better than our usual seats, and an all-you-can-eat buffet of the finest ball park burgers, dogs and burritos (ballpark burritos?). Talk about your fatty, salty overload.
And for those of us who find baseball less than mesmerizing, between innings there are the goofy contests. In addition to the always popular dizzy bat race, last night’s competitors raced Uncle Slam, rode tricycles, tossed stuffed chicken legs, and did pushups. For a chance at $10,000, one poor guy got to humiliate himself by trying to hit a target with a teed-up baseball (the ball never getting anywhere even close). But my favorite was a new one to me, the frozen T-shirt contest. A wet t-shirt is folded and frozen, and then contestants see who can crack open the shirt and get it on first. Now that’s entertainment.
I learned a new baseball term last night, too: an easy-to-catch pop fly is referred to as a “can of corn.” Here's the most popular explanation.
The Belly Buster Buffet:
My pal and yours, Uncle Slam: