Performer: Pearl Jam
Songwriter: Jeff Ament
Original Release: Binaural
Definitive Version: None
I went to see Lenny Kravitz the other night. Laurie wanted to go, so we went. A fringe benefit was seeing all the suburban babes dressed to the threes, if you get my meaning. It was all right; Kravitz can rock a bit. I’ve seen worse. He had a guitar player whose look, guitar, playing and stage presence recalls a poor man’s Slash. His name was Nick.
Moving right along … after the massive ego boost from seeing my name and the name of my brand-new website on the scoreboard at Riverfront Stadium tout my birthday in 2000 (my actual birthday was the next day), I had to answer nature’s call—the irresistible urge for a dog and a beer.
As luck would have it, the concession stand behind our section was packed, and the Reds didn’t run all of the stands in the red-seat upper deck. Even though this was the beginning of the post-Marge Schott Era, cheapness still ruled the roost. Fortunately, because it was the post-Marge Schott Era, the team at least installed monitors at each concession stand so you wouldn’t miss any of the action.
And it was a good thing they did this, too, because I was able to watch in the 5th inning when new Red Ken Griffey Jr.—one of my favorite players since his rookie season in Seattle—blasted a home run ...
With me standing in line at the freakin’ concession stand.
A colleague from The Dispatch Business department was at the game, too, and we were in the same line chatting. We both got pretty silent when Griffey hit his dinger to the roar of the crowd and were undoubtedly thinking the same thing: What a couple of maroons.
The next batter was Dante Bichette, and all you need to know about Bichette is I ripped him every chance I got for being a totally overrated schmoe—why did they waste a roster spot on him? He quickly became known in my circle as Dante Boobchette.
It might not have been the next pitch, but Boobchette also connected for the circuit—back-to-back homers. At this point, my colleague just looked at me and laughed. I again shook my head with a big smile. Gee, I’m sure glad I chose THIS particular time to get concessions.
When I got back to my seat, no one said anything. Scott assumed I’d be ticked because I wanted to see Griffey hit one out and, of course, I missed it. I was, but I wasn’t going to let on. These things happen. So, of course, I took this as my comedic cue: I sat down as casual as can be, looked slowly to my left then to my right (with no one making eye contact) and said, “So … did I miss anything?”
And, no, the dog and beer didn’t assuage my pain.
At the end of the game, which the Reds won handily, Barry Larkin (who, of course, just made it to the Hall of Fame) drew a 14 into the mound to signify Pete Rose, who couldn’t be at the park to join the 1975 Reds celebration due to his being banned from baseball. Coincidentally, Rose was the subject of my first post on BaseballTruth.com and in fact the reason why I started the website, but that’s a story for another time.