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Old 08-22-2019, 03:35 PM
robardin is offline
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Flushing, NY
Posts: 4,771
I have continued to take my son to baseball games, and he has continued with his teenaged angles thereof.

I recently had this conversation with him, now 15 years old, at Citi Field a few weekends ago, home of the NY Mets.

"If a ball hits a bird in flight in fair territory, drops down and a fielder catches it, is that an out?"

"Yes. A batted ball that has hit a bird remains in play; if caught, it's an out, if not, it's a hit. It actually happened to a Mets outfielder, Kevin McReynolds, in the '80s. He was tracking to catch a fly ball when it hit a bird and both just fell from the sky. The runner ended up getting a double."

"So what if instead of falling to the field, it deflected out of the field fair, over the wall. Would it be a home run?"

"I suppose so. I mean, it'd be like a combo of that play, and the Jose Canseco Dome Run. [If you don't know what that means... GO SEARCH IT ON YOUTUBE NOW. --ed.] As long as a live ball in play goes over the wall, it's a home run."

"So what if I got a falcon trained to go after a baseball in flight and bring it to me, and then sat in the outfield seats?"

"Ballpark security will not let you enter with a falcon on your arm."

"No, but maybe I could train it to sit on a flagpole, and go after the ball on cue. And I waited for when the Mets needed a walkoff home run to win."

"It'd be pretty suspicious when the falcon brings you the home run ball."

"OK, so I train it to fly out of the ballpark into the parking lot."

"You seem to have given this a lot of thought."

"Not really."
This is the same kid who, when he was turning 4 years old, wanted to have a Mets themed birthday party, because his Dear Old Dad loved watching the Mets all the time, and dressed him up in little Mets outfits. Like, Mets balloons and decorations and cake and all that. He brought this up about a week before.

The date of this party was scheduled on Sunday, September 30th, 2007, the final game of the Mets season that year. Yes, THAT year.

Not wanting to ruin his birthday if the Mets fell into the sinkhole that the bullpen was rapidly digging for them, I deflected him to choosing a Spider-Man party theme instead.

As we set up for the party, I listened to the game via an earphone to a portable AM radio. The baseball game began at 1:10pm, and was basically over by 1:20pm as Tom Glavine quickly gave up 7 runs to the last place Marlins. I put away the radio and proceeded to conduct his birthday party with the TV off and as if the Mets did not exist. I did check the score every 20 minutes or so to see if the Mets might be mounting a comeback, but no. Meanwhile, the Phillies won their final game and overtook the Mets by one game to win the division, precluding the Mets from the 2007 playoffs (yea, unto 2015 were they banished).

I mentioned this to him recently, and guess what? He says I jinxed the Mets with my lack of faith.

"You basically admitted it could happen. Which means, in some sense, you MADE it happen."

"WHAT? Seriously? You're gonna try to lay that collapse on ME?"

"Just saying. You didn't believe. You didn't even let a child believe. You lost them the belief of a CHILD. Isn't that, like, the most powerful magic there is?"

Well, guess what? His birthday this year is once again, the last game of the 2019 season. A season where the once-dead Mets are now fighting to make a to-the--finishing-line surge for a playoff berth.

If the Mets are in a win-and-in, lose-and-snooze scenario again on a final game that is on his birthday, I am going to force him to have a Mets themed birthday party. Balloons, decorations, and orange and blue ice cream cake - the whole 60 feet, 6 inches. I don't care if he's turning sixteen!