Golden Lucy's Spiral Journal

Going on 87...Savoring and Surviving the Senior Years

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Lucy Remembers Baseball

An aside to those of you who thought you'd get rid of me for two weeks. Hey! At my age, I can't afford to lose even a minute. Plans changed. The fam is no longer taking a trip off the grid. And Thank GD I'm still in good health. So of course I must

Last night I caught a televised US baseball game. I was surprised. Baseball season? Already?
A digression: Back "in the day" I'd be surprised that it was 5 o'clock----Already? A bit later I'd marvel that it was , "Thursday? Already?" Then, "It's April? Already?" Now it's gotten to the point I'm grateful I remember what year/century it is. So naturally I'm surprised when "It's baseball season---Already?" Time for a stroll down Memory Lane.

A preface: 2006---Jack and Carole would rather be in Hell or K-Mart than attend an athletic event. I haven't been to a live baseball game for 15 years. However, catching the end of the televised game last night brought the memories flooding back.

40 years ago...I'm a single, fairly successful businesswoman with at serious "significant other," Ted, who adores baseball---and particularly the Cinci Reds. As any truth-telling woman of my era will now admit, it was important to apparently share the interests of your significant other. I wasn't a fool. I knew I'd have to learn something about baseball. I had to start from the bottom. To me, a bat was a nasty critter who lurked in belfries. A homerun was something you did when you had loose bowels. I didn't have the vaguest notion about the game. But I learned.

I became an avid, even rabid fan of the Cincinnati Reds. Though I was known at work as "the first to come and last to leave" kind of employee, even my regional manager noted my "terrible headaches" seemed to coincide with the Red's afternoon games. What fun those afternoon games were! Ted and I screamed, yelled, drank beer, ate hot dogs and loved being together. And we enjoyed watching Marge Schott.

Marge Schott was controversial owner of the Reds---the first woman ever to own a major league baseball team. I frequently saw her at the ball park but will never forget the game she came storming up our aisle cussing at her team like a drunken sailor. It scared me. Her epithets weren't signs of frustration, they were a revelation of character traits that were to be her downfall. But that's another story altogether. Like Pete Rose. All part of the rich and wonderful baseball story.

All the characters and color of my baseball-addicted years are very much part of matter how they got there. And I've never lost my love of baseball---especially the Reds. I still love my hometown and follow the Reds faithfully. But now that the afternoon Red's games are over for me I'm not sorry my world is larger and more liberating. Or that the Reds are still a great team.


  • At 3:51 PM, Anonymous auntietob said…

    Hey- grannylu- Wow- I never knew you were such a fan.I did grow up with many trips to Yankee stadium and still love a good game. Anytime you want to head up to a Rockies game-I'll drive!!
    loveyou, auntietob

  • At 5:01 PM, Blogger GUYK said…

    Ahh, baseball back when it was still a game instead of a business. When I followed baseball I was a near fanatic and could tell you the rosters and players and their batting average and slugging percentage and knew what pitchers threw slop and who had the heat. But I lost interest in the game as it became a business instead of a game and the owners and players has no loyalty to each other or the fams who actually made the game what it is. Without fans baseball would only be played in school yards and sand lots and on American Legion Ball fields. And if it was left up to me that would be the way it was. I still enjoy a little league or high scholl or even a college game but I refuse to watch pro baseball. They can take their multi million dollar contracts, six dollar hotdogs, and twenty dollar parking fees and shove it home-and I don't mean home plate.

  • At 5:30 PM, Blogger OldOldLady Of The Hills said…

    Well, I'm sorry you didn't go away for your sake, but I'm glad you didn't go away for our sakes! (lol)
    It is good to see you posting and visiting..(Thanks for the visit Lycy and your kind words, too...)
    Memories of Baseball Games gone lovely....And Marge Schott...Well, I say good for her that she owned that team....I have never been a baseball nut...I mean it was never a HUGE passion of mine, I liked it, but I never LOVED it, you know?...and so I have never been to a professional baebal game, ever! It must be euphoric when you are soooo in love with a team, as you were. I'm so happy you got to experience this many many tines....Did you marry Ted, btw?

  • At 9:16 PM, Anonymous Simply Coll said…

    I haven't been to a live baseball game in years. I used to play it a lot as a young girl. When I was 12, I broke my middle finger sliding into 2nd base.

  • At 6:34 AM, Blogger Miss Cellania said…

    I think you did the same thing to me as I did to you... say check back on such and such date, and then you go ahead and post anyway! But I'm glad you are posting.

    The Reds are supposedly "my team", since I ran the games on my (former) radio station. They played awful for years, and this year when they are doing well... I'm no longer working there. Thats life. I've never been to a live game outside of Little League. Thats from living in the boonies.

  • At 8:52 AM, Blogger Joy Des Jardins said…

    Hey, what a nice surprise to have you back much sooner than planned...lucky us. I might not have checked in on you, but I got your comment on my post.

    I'm a HUGE baseball fan too Lucy...only I live in Baseball Hell being a lifelong Chicago Cubs fan. You know the history, right? Well, I feel the same way...there's nothing better than being right there in person at a game. It's been a while for me, but I watch a lot of them on TV, even if my heart can't take it. This season is proving to be no different I'm afraid, but I'm sure I'll continue to watch, being the glutton for punishment that I am. Loved your very funny post.

  • At 2:24 PM, Blogger Chancy said…

    I have some good baseball memories also. Living in Atlanta, of course we are Braves fans. We used to attend a lot of games at
    Atlanta Stadium but now we usually watch on TV. We used to look over at Ted Turner's box and see him with Jane Fonda when she still was trying to look like a hottie with long blond hair.

    The most special game we ever attended was the one when Hank Aaron hit home run number 715 and surpassed Babe Ruth's record.

    "Aaron's crowning moment was, of course, a home run. It came when he surpassed what had seemed like an unbreakable record only a decade earlier. That was the night in 1974 he walloped No. 715 and trotted around the bases past the Babe and into history."

  • At 2:52 PM, Blogger kenju said…

    I'm glad you are here, Lucy! Hope you weren't looking forward to the trip too much....LOL

    Baseball is not my game, but my grandson loves it, eats, breathes and sleeps it.

  • At 5:21 PM, Blogger Jamie Dawn said…

    I think watching baseball games on TV is boring, but attending a live game is a blast. Our local team (when we lived in CA) used to be the Modesto A's and then they changed their name to the Modesto Nuts. I think that was nuts!!
    I like what you said about "at your age" making every minute count, or something to that affect. I agree with you, but I think we ALL should make each day count, regardless of age. Your attitude about life is a lot younger than many people I know. You are da bomb!!

  • At 6:39 PM, Anonymous Lucy said…

    Well i can see i need to catch up. Did not know you might be gone for awhile but now your not going.

    I love baseball -- but prefer to watch it in person vs. TV. Now we tend to watch it during the playoffs only. Years ago, I use to follow the St. Louis Cardinals..and for a short time was a fan of the Reds (Johnny Bench days)...

    So true about ... thinking about time/days. Lately i seem to think alot about what i was doing last year this time.. 10 years ago, 20 years ago.

    Thanks for the link to your friend.. i have not looked at it yet -- but will.

  • At 6:48 PM, Anonymous Janice said…

    I'm impressed, Lucy! I'm so not into sports...I just try to remember that if it's Spring, it's baseball, Fall is football, Winter is basketball, and hockey is not a ball at all! (I'm not quite that bad, but close.)

  • At 5:33 AM, Anonymous Terri said…

    Welcome back, Lucy! Glad we don't have to have Lucy Withdrawal for 2 weeks.
    Although I follow and love our Red Sox, I'm afraid I lack that passion that you have. It's refreshing to see that passion alive in you. And such nice memories all of it brings back for you.

  • At 2:39 PM, Blogger OldOldLady Of The Hills said…

    Hi Lucy...
    What a very lovely lovely comment, dear Lucy...I am overwhelmed..and Happily So, I might add...I thank you with all my heart for your words, my dear... and your encouragung visits, too! You are one rare special person, Lucy. So glad we discovered each other.

  • At 2:45 PM, Blogger Mike ( ex scientia, veritas ) said…

    I'm w/ you Lucyd!! Baseball and hockey. Good to read you again!!

  • At 3:19 PM, Blogger Jamie Dawn said…

    I'm in the mood for some peanuts and Cracker Jacks.

  • At 3:47 PM, Anonymous momma said…

    Sorry to say the last baseball game I attended was in 1948. I went to see Virgil Trucks pitch for the Detroit Tigers. I lost the taste for them somewhere along the way. When my youngest was a senior in high school I went with her to several basketball games. I loved watching the youngsters trying so hard to win. These last years I have been limited to watching figure skating and going swimming myself until last year. Now sports seem to have faded from my life. I think it is great that you have this interest to follow each year.

  • At 8:35 PM, Blogger Beverly said…

    I saw some of those games in Cincy about 40 years ago as well. Those were the days indeed. I love your blog.

  • At 7:22 AM, Anonymous Claude said…

    Ah! baseball... such a mystery for us on the other side of the pond. I think I attended one baseball match in my life! Couldn't figure out what it was all about. But then I have never been much of a sports watcher.
    I liked your post though. Always fun to learn new things about your favourite bloggers ;)

  • At 11:49 PM, Anonymous joared said…

    Ah the Reds! Pete Rose was a favorite of Ruth Lyons at WLW-T. Crosley Broadcasting; later Avco Broadcasting. Do you remember?

    I was up the road at WLW-C in Columbus. Would get the station's box seats to see the Jets, a Pittsburgh Pirates farm team - my soon-to-be husband and I enjoyed the games. He remained an avid sports fan, source of keeping me up-to-date in the world of sports.

    Off the subject a bit, but in Dayton, Phil Donahue was just starting his show at WLW-D. We were doing ours in Columbus, too. Donahue introduced his neighbor to TV audiences -- remember Erma Bombeck -- funny lady who wrote some funny books i.e. The Grass Is Always Greener .. Over The Septic Tank, is one of them, I think.

  • At 12:51 PM, Blogger Mildred Garfield said…

    Hi Lucy

    Enjoyed reading your baseball post even though I am not a baseball fan. - Liked that bit about "the home run."

    Since I am learning about "collage" I have a question, who did that great one about baseball? Neat!!

  • At 2:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

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  • At 9:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

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