Monthly Archives: January 2011

Offseason Nostalgia: My First Baseball Game

Every baseball fan I talk to has some beautiful story about the first baseball game they went to and how it made them fall in love with the game.  My story, not so much.   But since it’s January and it’s been months since an MLB game, I feel the need to tell it.

It was the summer I was eight or nine years old and had relatives visiting from Europe, who wanted to get the all-American experience and go to a baseball game.  A’s tickets were cheaper than Giants tickets and BART went straight to the Coliseum, so we chose Oakland.   It was versus the Toronto Blue Jays.  Trying to get nine people (five children, no less) anywhere isn’t easy and we got there late.  It took a while to get tickets once there and the only block of nine seats was, you know, not an ideal place to sit.  A.K.A., under an overhang where you couldn’t really see anything and it was freezing cold.  We finally got up to our seats and everyone was cheering.  Huh?  Someone explained that there had been a leadoff home run.   We got our hot dogs and settled in.  Nothing happened.  For a long, long time.  It was a really, really, incredibly boring game.  My parents decided to beat the crowds and leave early.  We left before the bottom of the ninth and as we stood on the BART platform a man turned to us and asked, “Did you just leave the A’s game?”  We told him we had.  And he told us the A’s had just walked off.   Bam.  We missed the only runs of the game.

I did not go back to a baseball game for a several years come.  I didn’t have a very favorable impression of Major League Baseball.  Until… well, the rest is history.

So do you have a rosier story to tell about your first ballgame?  Do share in the comments.

Diamond Girl

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Useful Guide to Washington DC for FP Santangelo and The Basketball(ish) Team Joe Martinez is Now  Inhabiting

I’m going to talk about some old news because I’ve been secluded in the sun on vacation in Tahiti these past few days (translation: huddled in front of laptop in damp and freezing Bay Area).


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Old News


Overheard conversation last season: 


Young child:  Who is that?

Dad: FP Santangelo.  You know, the one Mommy likes.



I was never a huge Sports Phone 680 listener but it was my go-to show after depressing losses, when the post-game show ended too soon.  Really good therapy.  The wolfpack and all that.  The volume of female callers with odd things to say was funny too.  So since moving to a new city is always a little disorienting, I’ve made a mini-guide to help him out in DC.



First, he’s going to need some cupcake stores.  This article in The Washington Post has lots of ideas.  Personally, the place that touts their designer cupcakes sounds good to me.  If he’s feeling swamped and needs some entertainment, Lady Gaga is playing at the Verizon center in the end of February.  If musicals are more his style, then Wicked is opening in June.  And if he needs to pick up some snappy clothes for his new gig, there is a Burberry store at 1155 Connecticut Ave.



Beautiful Burberry ad.  With Emma Watson missing a leg.  You might, you know, see a one-legged Emma Watson if you head over to the Burberry store.  They should have put that on the ad.


So hasta la vista, FP.  Have a good time in DC. 

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Really, Really Old News


Joe Martinez was traded to the Indians.  So he will be moving hangouts from the Indianapolis Indians to the Cleveland Indians.  Or the Columbus Clippers, as the case may be, which sounds suspiciously like a basketball team.  Despite the name, I am becoming something of a fan for the team as well as the actual Indians.  And if some strange luck takes me to Cleveland in the coming year, I will go to a game and show some, you know, Indians pride.  Because I am filled with Indians pride, just waiting to get out.

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Diamond Girl

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The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Fan Fest. And My Chocolate Mousse.

With Giants Fan Fest just a month away, now seems like a good time to discuss it.  I did the Fan Fest thing for the first time last year and it was, um, flawed.  To say the least.  In my opinion.   I looked on the internet and saw only glowing reviews of it, so I’m really curious… do you like your team’s Fan Fest?  Are you planning to go this year?  And without further ado, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly in my opinion.

The Good


Going into the press box and seeing the labels for all the different news sources and the view from there was lots of fun.


Going on the field…


…and seeing the view of the stands from the field

The Bad

Which has much more text and fewer pictures = much less fun.

Sort of hectic and unpleasant and for all anyone was doing to speed it along, the lines were very long and slow.  I get that there were a lot of people who appreciate and enjoy that you can just go in for free and see whatever you want to see, but that honestly wasn’t fun for me or my Fan-Fest-going-partners.  I think if it were more guided and concise, it would be more fun for all.  Timed tickets, anyone?  It’s not like I have cash flowing out of my ears or anything, but I would absolutely be willing to pay something if the event was better streamlined.   Especially if the parking stayed free. 

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Some visual aid on the cash coming out of ears thing.  Doesn’t that guy look exactly like me?  Twins separated and birth, I think.  And I was delayed for 40 odd years.

Even on a smaller scale, it was just hard to find where anything was or what, exactly, was going on.  The workers seemed as genuinely confused as I was.  And the way the KNBR booth- which could have been a top attraction- was set up, made it hard to have a good time watching.  The Chronicle Live set was way more fun and had TVs set up playing the show so you could see the result of what was going on set.  At the KNBR booth, you couldn’t hear a thing and there were no radios. 


But there was a Tim Lincecum spotting, so how bad could it have been?

The Ugly

I’m not blaming the Giants for this, but the field was like going to the beach.  Wet and sandy.  And kind of muddy, too.  Not prime conditions for my embellished boots.  Or my brother’s sneakers, for that matter.  Just not prime conditions to walk on. It was a little bit ugly.




For all that, I will probably end up going back this year.  It’s been a long offseason and I don’t think I’ll be able to pass up a chance to smell some baseball.

Diamond Girl

p.s.  You knew I wouldn’t end this post without referencing National Whipped Cream Day.  I made chocolate mousse with whipped cream.  It was really good.  But not real whipped cream, I guess, because whipped cream isn’t whipped cream at all unless it’s been whipped with whips.  Willy Wonka is the authority on this one.

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If This is What 2011 is Like, I Want 2010 Back and Why I Am Okay With the World Ending in May

Everyone is probably totally over 1-1-11, by now, but I just looked at my web stats and saw that I had 111 visitors to my blog that day.  Isn’t the just one of those things that makes you smile?  It makes me smile, at least.

Anyway.  If this is what 2011 is like, I want 2010 back.  I’m sure I’ll change my mind soon, but this year has been pretty hellish so far.  One violent cold and an undisclosed number of bowls of potato leek soup later, I’m finally ready to start the new year.  In Diamond Girl Land, it is now January 1st.  And every day is National Cupcake Day there too, because I could really use a cupcake right now.  Because aside from my cold, the endless parade of slow news day are enough to make anyone need some cupcakes.  I guess a few things did happen.

The Rangers made their deals with Webb and Rhodes official. 


And Jon Daniels said something vaguely incoherent at the press conference.

The Giants did God-only-knows-whatever-they-do-all-offseason.


Looks like it’s boring for Sabean too.

A-Rod sported a particularly atrocious fedora in Vegas.


And Armageddon is coming in May.  Good thing Ashton Kutcher is ready.

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Bad shades and all.

In a little bit of good news, only 41 days until catchers and pitchers report and the 2011 season comes a little closer to reality.  Even if judgment day does come in May, we’ll get a month of the new baseball season in before then.  I am no longer afraid.

Diamond Girl

p.s.  MLBlogs is doing that thing with the bolds again.  Sorry for the weirdness.

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