Think Snow

Time Out In A Small Town


     There may be nothing better to cleanse your mind briefly of the hate and mendacity that grip our country than going to a baseball game in a small town. Hours before members of the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees questioned Robert Mueller, I was sitting on hard, metal bleachers watching the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs play the Newark (NY) Pilots.

     The teams are made up of college kids and are part of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League or PGCBL. Why do I think it wasn’t a college kid who came up with the name for the league?

     Just like a game at Yankee Stadium, some fans are always on the move, walking to and from the concession stand or bathroom. One 60ish man on the move asked a woman about the same age, “Where are you going, Sue?” Sue, a lady of few words, said “crazy,” as she walked away from him. He did not challenge her statement.

     The home team DiamondDawgs fell behind 1-0 but rallied, scoring five runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Every good play by a Dawg was greeted by the ringing of cowbells and a deafening pounding on the floor of the bleachers, either by baseball bats or more likely a couple of canes. (Lazy reporter that I am, I never looked behind me to see what tool was being used by the old-timers at the top of the bleachers.)

     Irene was with me along with our kids, Julie and Jack, Julie’s husband, Lynn, and Jack’s younger daughter, Cristiana. As the Dawgs kept scoring, Jack grabbed Irene’s cane and joined in the pounding, and, always a good sport, Irene took over the assignment the next couple of times the Dawgs did something commendable. 

     In an area in front of us were benches with Reserved signs on them. Several fans sitting there brought their own cushions along with blankets, aware it can get a bit nippy after nine o’clock. Along about the third inning a woman walked through the reserved area with a plastic container of cupcakes with pink icing. I saw no money changing hands, so I’m guessing they were free. 

     As far as I know the Yankees have never had a free cupcake night or even a cupcake bobblehead night. If cupcakes were sold at Yankee Stadium, what would they cost $8? $18? 

     We had not had dinner and left when it was approaching eight p.m. After a good meal fixed by Julie, we didn’t turn on one of the cable propaganda channels but watched the Yankees play the Twins. Away from home for two nights, I abandoned my normal routine of spending a couple of hours a day reading newspapers. It was refreshing to tune out, take a break from the national mess. 

     Although I grew up in a small town, I need a refresher course on how life is lived in these surroundings. Before breakfast one morning, I went for a walk on Julie and Lynn’s property in wet grass that leads to a woods, a woods where deer and rabbit play. The grass had been cut the day before and moist blades of green stuck to the tops and bottoms of my sneakers.

     I also walked a bit in the neighborhood (seeing a deer walking across a street a couple of blocks ahead of me), and when I returned in wet shoes I sat on a bench on the deck. The cushions on the deck had been there all night and were, of course, wet. As I sat there, using a napkin to clean off my shoes, something else became wet. My pants. What a genius I am. Wet pants, be damned, I enjoyed my little outing.

    It was relaxing to get away, do something different for a while. The DiamondDawgs, by the way, won 10-7. Now that I’m home I’m back to wondering if either the Democrats or the Republicans know the score.