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Did Ya? by Matt Tracy I wonder if anyone ever thought of any of the stuff I propose? [597 words]
Turning Fifty by Danny I. Spitler The author takes a reflective look at reaching the half century mark. [999 words]
The Morning Shower by Danny I. Spitler Does anyone else suffer these issues associated with the morning shower? [940 words]
Stranger To Myself by Omar Longoria “Look in the mirror. The face that pins you with its double gaze reveals a chastening secre... [1,225 words]
A Thanksgiving Monday by Danny I. Spitler The author has a reflective and enlightening evening following Thanksgiving. [809 words]
The Vaporeal Defecation Of A Mental Diarrheatic by Crazy Clown I just had so much fun writing the other two displays of inanit... [951 words]
The Unfortunate Homophobe by Crazy Clown An interspective on a homophobe who wishes he wasn't, and some ideas and opinions on ... [1,131 words]
The Demented Monologue Of A Downright Imbecile by Crazy Clown Another display of foolishness and inanity, from the one who can... [1,246 words]
The Bed by Danny I. Spitler The author gains appreciation for the consistency brought to his life by an inanimate object [791 words]
She's Just Relaxing by Danny I. Spitler She's just relaxing on the sofa; however..... [626 words]
Fathers And Sons And Baseball
Well, Shit by Crazy Clown A rather... interesting essay on the worlds worst waste. Requires a unique state of mind to enjoy pr... [1,020 words]
Swimming With Sharks by Danny I. Spitler The author experiences an encounter with a large Lemon Shark in Tahiti [835 words]
Some Explanation Is In Order by Crazy Clown You might come to this title expecting a deep, philosophical, or thought-provoking... [447 words]
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My Dog Opposes Communism by Tcn Actually submitted to a high school teacher. I guess I was feeling like a rebel at the... [862 words]
Free Food by Danny I. Spitler There's no such thing as a free lunch. Wrong. There is tons of free food, as this author points out.... [1,031 words]
Dragonball Z - Akira Toryama's Drug Trip? by Crazy Clown An essay worthy of the label of Crazy Clown, about the sheer ludicrou... [989 words]
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It's Wednesday by Danny I. Spitler The author reflects on his lover. [143 words]
Bruce Willis: One Of The Sexiest Men Alive by L Chapman - [176 words]
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Food Stamp Day by L Chapman - [247 words]
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Fathers And Sons And Baseball
Three generations share an uniquely American experience. Opening Day.
[1,078 words]
Danny I. Spitler
-I am a successful business executive who is finally returning to writing after giving it up in College to pursue a business career. I travel extensively, hike, golf, and scuba dive. I live with Pam, my loving companion and fellow traveler.
[December 2000]
A Thanksgiving Monday (Essays) The author has a reflective and enlightening evening following Thanksgiving. [809 words] [Mind]
Blue Run At Telluride (Short Stories) The author tests his nerve and his resolve in a challenging duel with a ski slope. [1,770 words] [Adventure]
Free Food (Essays) There's no such thing as a free lunch. Wrong. There is tons of free food, as this author points out. [1,031 words] [Humor]
It's Wednesday (Essays) The author reflects on his lover. [143 words] [Romance]
She's Just Relaxing (Essays) She's just relaxing on the sofa; however..... [626 words] [Romance]
Swimming With Sharks (Essays) The author experiences an encounter with a large Lemon Shark in Tahiti [835 words] [Adventure]
The Bed (Essays) The author gains appreciation for the consistency brought to his life by an inanimate object [791 words] [Self-Help]
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The Morning Shower (Essays) Does anyone else suffer these issues associated with the morning shower? [940 words] [Humor]
Turning Fifty (Essays) The author takes a reflective look at reaching the half century mark. [999 words] [Biography]
Water Festival In Thailand (Short Stories) In Thailand, the "land of smiles," one of the wildest and happiest celebrations is Song Kron, also known as the Thai water festival. Experience this special celebration in a very unique way. [1,701 words] [Travel]
Fathers And Sons And Baseball
Danny I. Spitler

It took almost 50 years, but Dad and I finally went to a baseball game. We sat together from the opening pitch to the final out. It was nice. It was something we had missed out on while living on the farm in Southern New Mexico, and, after moving to Phoenix, we never made a pilgrimage to Dodger Stadium or Candlestick Park.

Dad wasn’t much of a baseball fan. I was fanatical for a while, but somewhere in my early teenage years some pretty girl’s lips touched mine for the very first time, and the baseball game of the week fell to a distant second place in my order of priorities. All the baseball cards, the Yankee scrapbooks, and the other collectibles found their way into the cardboard boxes marked “Danny’s Stuff—Don’t Touch,” and then into the attics and closets of one apartment and house after another.

I had not followed baseball for over 30 years. My last scrapbook and baseball card set was from 1961, the year Roger Maris broke Babe Ruth’s home run record, and the Yankees beat the Reds in the World Series. A few years later the Yankees were no longer a powerhouse. All the players that I had followed were retiring, and I had moved on to cars, girls, tennis, girls, politics, girls, college, and college girls. Although I dusted off the glove every summer and played on the church softball team, the major leagues held no interest for me.

Then, two years ago, Phoenix was awarded a major league franchise and suddenly you could reserve season tickets for a major league season that wasn’t going to happen for over two years. I dropped off my deposit, received my lottery number and, for the next two and a half years, I followed the progress of the Arizona Diamondbacks. The announcement of their name, the unveiling of their logo and uniforms, the groundbreaking of the stadium, the hiring of a manager, the expansion draft, the signing of free agents, and finally the completion of the stadium.

It seemed to go by so quickly. Yet when I look back at where my life was two and half years ago, I would have never guessed that I could have crammed so many events into my life while sitting around waiting for the Diamondbacks to take the field. Yet the time was here. The stadium was built, spring training was at an end, and the major leagues, which were a faraway fantasy when I was 10 years old, were now in downtown Phoenix. And I had season tickets.

There was no doubt but what I wanted to share Opening Day with my son, Kyle. At 17 he, like me at that age, is not terribly interested in the major leagues. He, like me at that age, is interested in playing ball rather than watching. And playing with the hope that someone with a pouty smile, petite body, and kissable lips is sitting in the stands and watching him play. Still, I began to believe that Opening Day would be something special. There would never be another event quite like it. Opening Day of the first season, for a brand new team, in a brand new stadium. I wanted to share it with Kyle. But I sort of wanted to share it with Dad also.

Jerry Colangelo, the Diamondback’s owner, solved my delimma by announcing that the first game to be played in the new stadium would be the Diamondbacks final spring training game, which was to be two days before Opening Day. What a stroke of genius. Now I could take Dad to the FIRST game in the ballpark, and Kyle to Opening Day. I am certain that Jerry took into consideration the three generational aspects of baseball when making this momentous decision.

The spring training game, on Sunday against the White Sox, was the first of what would be many losses for the Diamondbacks in their new stadium, but it didn’t really matter. It was the first game ever played in “our” stadium, and it was special to share it with Dad. And, it whetted my appetite for Opening Day on Tuesday.

By Tuesday afternoon I was too keyed up to work, and I headed home. I changed into my jeans and pulled down the old Yankee jersey. The one with the patch commemorating that magical season of 1961. I slipped it on, buttoned it up, and drove downtown, arriving three hours before the scheduled opening pitch.
Kyle had baseball practice that day, and his Mom was bringing him to the ballpark. I had dropped off his ticket earlier, knowing that I was taking a chance. After all, he could probably sell it for over $500, and he does have this entrepreneurial spirit. However, just as the opening ceremonies were getting underway I saw Kyle bounding into the aisle, comparing the row numbers to the ticket in his hand. I caught his eye, and he slipped into row 8 section 204 and plopped down in seat number 12. He gave me a hug and then turned to look at the stadium. It was the first time he had a seen it. He took a long breath and then whispered that most complimentary of teenage terms…….”AWESOME.”

We both sat mesmerized when the roof opened to the night sky and we saw the moon hanging there over the stadium. We drank in everything that happened for the next three hours, hardly taking our eyes off the field, except for a quick dash to the concession stand for the mandatory hot dogs. We talked strategy, tried to pick off the third base coach’s signals, and wondered out loud if the hit-and-run would have been a better call than the sacrifice bunt.

The D-backs lost badly, but no one cared. It was a three-hour love-fest as 49,000 fans bonded with their stadium and their team. I also suspect that there were hundreds of other fathers there in the stadium who, like me, experienced something special with their sons that night.

As we exited the stadium we walked to the a spot in front of the stadium where, among hundreds of bricks, I pointed to one that was inscribed, “Lindsey and Kyle Spitler--Enjoy the Game--I Love You--Dad.” Kyle stared at the words for a moment and, instead of just saying, “Cool,” he smiled and said “Thanks Dad” and gave me a hug.

It was a very special night.




"i thought that it was a good paper and it applied to my intrests because i likie baseball but even if someone who didn't like baseball they would still be interested in the story. i would of liked to see alittle less writen about the diamondbacks and a little bit more written about the relationship with the father. the story is a good story and i would not make that many changes." -- jeremy accardo, normal, il, us.


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© 1998 Danny I. Spitler
October 2000

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