Tuesday, August 07, 2007

As I slipped the surly Bonds of earth

Tonight I flew home on Frontier Airlines. They have Direct TV. Unlike Jet Blue, they charge five bucks for it. I find that annoying, but on longer flights I usually give in and swipe my Visa. This was a one-hour flight, so I had no intention of doing so.

The TV is free until the plane takes off, so I saw the San Francisco baseball game was on. Although I don't follow baseball much anymore, it is the sport I grew up with. If you don't pay attention to this stuff, Barry Bonds of San Fran has been on the verge of breaking Hank Aaron's all time home run record. I'm sure some folks will say, "I thought that was Babe Ruth's record." True, up 'til 1974, that was the case.

I saw that Bonds was scheduled to bat in just a few minutes. Al though I would not have otherwise sought to view this game, I felt compelled to continue watching. I had a premonition this would be the at-bat and the fact that I was placed in front of this little screen with ESPN on seemed somehow meaningful. So I paid my money.

Bonds pulled to a 3-2 count, including one foul that probably should have been at least a hit, but he was behind the ball. Then the screen went blank.

That happens when there's turbulence, but often, although the screen is blank you still have sound. I would have, except the purser took that moment to give her spiel about paying for TV and what beverages they have and what electronic devices you may or may not use and to please sit back and relax and enjoy the flight. Like, what was the last time you enjoyed a flight? That's like saying, lie down, relax, enjoy the colonoscopy. Best case result is if it isn't too painful.

When she was done, the screen was still blank, but I heard fireworks.

Fuck me. I missed it.

Eventually, the picture resumed and I saw all the pomp and circumstance, Bond's teary thank yous, his godfather Willie Mays at his side, the recorded message from Hank Aaron. And of course the replay of the home run.

But I missed it.

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Barry said...

This debacle reminds me of the November 1968 "Heidi Game," where NBC cut away from the pivotal last seconds of the Jets-Oakland football game to broadcast the children's clasic. (The Raiders came back to score 14 points in the final moments to win the game.) Maybe today's incident was even worse -- you were stuck paying the five dollars!

Writeprocrastinator said...

Timing is everything and obviously she is related to Bud Selig.

Seriously, why is baseball so popular in New York? My nieces and nephews have to play it, it's all my in-laws seem to ever talk about (save for my father-in-law) and even the ex-pat New Yawker at work spends entirely too much time following the Yankees.

Eric Riback said...

You're right, NY is a baseball town. I was one of those weird ones that had at times been both a Yankee and Mets fan.

Now I live in a football town for sure.