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The title always seemed like the most reasonable baseball advice I ever heard. Since I was a lousy ballplayer, maybe I can apply that advice to a blog.
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If It's Snowing, It Must Be Time For SoxFest

Posted 01-15-2012 at 10:29 PM by tebman

We're going to SoxFest. There -- I said it.

I'd been waffling all winter because I was frustrated with the 2011 season and with the ragged way the season ended. But then it snowed.

I was shoveling the snow and thinking how much I wasn't looking forward to the work week. Then I thought about SoxFest coming up in a couple of weeks. Then I learned that son-of-tebman, my faithful baseball companion, didn't have to work that weekend. Then I remembered I have vacation days available. Then I went in and ordered the tickets.

It was Michael Corleone in "The Godfather Part III" who said, "Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in."

Okay Sox, you got me.

It would be easy to prattle on about the music and magic of baseball and how it rides above the foolishness. And because I ride above and through the foolishness, I'll prattle away.

I look forward to Opening Day now the same way I did when I was a kid. The difference now is that I have the means to actually go to the game. SoxFest didn't exist when I was a kid so I had to rely on reading Jerry Holtzman's articles in the Sun-Times to get my off-season fix. We went to SoxFest for the first time last year, and though we spent several hours each day standing in lines, it was time well spent.

All those people waiting in line with us were there for the same reason. Conversation was easy since we all had White Sox stories to tell, and we all indulged each other in that strain of four-seam cabin fever that afflicts baseball fans in January.

One of my stories is of Opening Day, 1991. I went by myself to the strange new place across the street from the whitewashed funhouse I knew so well. The old ballpark looked like roadkill with a huge gaping wound in its southeast corner. I walked into the new place disoriented, climbing into the vertiginous upper deck to find my seat. Blue plastic, bare concrete, corrugated metal...I felt like I'd walked into a new parking garage.

The game was terrible. The Tigers were clobbering the Sox and ended up winning 16-0. This did nothing to alleviate my sense of unease in this spaceship of a ballpark. But it was at the end of the Tigers' 4th inning when I knew it would be okay: the Tigers scored 10 runs in the 4th, a humiliation. When the third out was finally made there arose a loud, derisive, and unmistakably sarcastic cheer that I recognized like the voice of the old friend I knew it was. The people were the same even if the ballpark changed, and they were still here!

It was then that I relaxed and knew even as bad as this game was, there would be 161 more to get it right. And my street-smart brothers and sisters would be there along with me, no matter where the game was played. It was a good feeling.

I got some of that same vibe last year standing in line at SoxFest. After shoveling snow and grinding on to work, I decided I could use some of that now. So we're going to SoxFest.

There -- I said it again.
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Comments

  1. Old Comment
    Brian26's Avatar
    Terrific, as usual.
    Posted 01-15-2012 at 10:39 PM by Brian26 Brian26 is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Fantastic new post! And I really like that word prattle, btw. :cool:

    [FONT=&quot][FONT=Verdana]Iím so glad to hear that you will be attending Soxfest with your son and I hope you both have a wonderful weekend[/FONT]![/FONT]
    Posted 01-16-2012 at 07:09 PM by October26 October26 is offline
  3. Old Comment
    ChiSoxGirl's Avatar
    Awesome blog entry! I'm looking forward to SoxFest as much as you are and am glad you'll be joining us once again. Let's make it a new tradition.
    Posted 01-16-2012 at 09:40 PM by ChiSoxGirl ChiSoxGirl is offline
  4. Old Comment
    tebman's Avatar
    Thanks for the comments, everyone. The big news, of course, is that Bud Selig is supposed to be at SoxFest on Friday. We'll fasten our seatbelts as we hear Bud's searing insight on such vital matters as the need to add six or eight more rounds of playoffs.
    Posted 01-16-2012 at 10:19 PM by tebman tebman is offline
 



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