My Son’s Awesome Balls

Another Man Moment slides into obliv­ion as I pon­der my son’s recently acquired balls.

We were at the Sox-Yankees game at Comisky Park just south of Chi­na­town here in Chicago sit­ting in seats good enough for God. My son had brought his glove, a ball, and a sharpie. We were 20 rows up from the Sox dugout, look­ing down the first base­line from home plate. Roon and I grabbed the sharpie and the gear and loped down the steps to the dugout where Jenks signed our stuff. It was sunny and nippy and the guy sell­ing hot dogs was say­ing it like it was some kind of ver­dant truth. He didn’t call out HOOOOOT DOOOOOGSS! Like they usu­ally do. He glared into the crowd, banged on his box, and stated, per­functly: Hot Dogsh. Like he was say­ing “It ain’t hot pret­zels, idiot.”

So Con­nor is sit­ting there burn­ing in the sun and he has his lit­tle black glove and his Sox hat and his Sox shirt and Morkoviak slices one to 8 o’clock and guess who gets it? Oh yeah. The guy RIGHT BEHIND MY SON. Con­nor had his hand in the air and it tipped his glove and shot into the open hands of the base­ball mar­ket­ing direc­tor sit­ting behind us.

This has hap­pened before. We were at a Bulls game and one of those impos­si­bly cur­va­ceous t-shirt girls sling­shot a bulls shirt into the air over our head. Its para­chute opened and it drifted down like some kind of mod­i­fied Chi­nese water tor­ture spe­cialty, like a Fellinni take, like for seven and a half years it floated down directly over my son’s head. There’s no one around us for like four­teen seats and he’s scream­ing. I mean BELLOWING “I GOT IT I GOT IT” and just as it’s almost in his hands the wind (wind?) blows it one seat back to a guy in a suit (AT A FRIKKING BALL GAME). I just turned around and stared down into his brain stem for a sec­ond and he smiled and handed the shirt to Con­nor who pro­ceeded to scream until his throat blew out.

But it was dif­fer­ent at the Sox game. The guy had class. He didn’t even hes­i­tate. He shoved it into Roon’s glove, said “Nice catch, kid! GO SOX!” and pat­ted him on the back. Con­nor was prac­ti­cally weight­less. He held the thing up and whooped with the kind of unadul­ter­ated glee that made my inner South­ern boy proud.

After the game (Sox pasted the Yan­kees) we walked out and Con­nor car­ried the ball in front of him and kept say­ing to me “It sure is cool that I caught this foul ball, huh?” “Yep, caught a foul ball, right here. Yep this one. Nice one dad, huh? This foul ball? This ball? That I caught?” All the way down six lev­els until we were in the car. Then he rolled the win­dow down. “I sure like this ball. This ball is super cool, This foul ball. That I caught.”

Ahh. Base­ball.


About Bull Garlington

Christopher Garlington is the humor columnist for Chicago Parent magazine, Seattle Parent Map, and New York Parenting magazine. His stories have appeared in Atlanta Parent, Baton Rouge Parent, Parenting ABC (U.K.); Florida, Orlando, Orlando Weekly, Catholic Digest, Retort, Another Realm, The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature, and other magazines. He is the author of the infamous anti-parenting blog, Death By Children; co-author of The Beat Cop’s Guide to Chicago Eats.

  • the­molk

    That’s great work by the guy sit­ting behind you. He obvi­ously gets it.

  • Anony­mous

    i think that kid rubed it in con­ners face.