Any Opening Day rituals? I always wear the same shirt.
Just so we are all clear on this, let it be known that I try to change my shirt at least once every day, every two days if I’m really strapped for time and/or laundry detergent. I mean, I do have a wild side, but I ain’t no goddamn hipster.
But that’s not what you meant, Pete, and for that, I wish I could apologize.
Rituals? Hell yes. Indeed, dear readers, I may be a logical, reason abiding secularist, but that doesn’t mean I can’t dip into the crazy pool every once in a while, just for fun.
In fact, the following is a short checklist of things I must have for opening day to complete me:
It will never nag, it will never whine, it will never talk. It doesn’t ask you to skip the game to go to some dinner party. It doesn’t ask “does this make me look fat?” It won’t flip out, drunk dial you at 5 a.m. and force you to change all the locks on your doors. Beer is your friend, people. Make sure you have it. Lots of it.
Um, you can have pizza without beer and beer without pizza, but why would you do something like that? Opening Day calls for order — the first of a regimented 162 — so let’s all get on the same Utopian page and have some ‘za with our beer (this will cause heartburn for a lot of us, but it doesn’t matter. Man up!).
Just when you think you have enough beer you realize you need more beer. It happens all the time. If you’re on a budget, Miller Lite, Old Style or Bud Light will work splendidly (though not Special Export or Hamm’s, unless you want to make out with the toilet later). If money ain’t a thang I suggest Belle’s Oberon, Sam Adams anything or Trout Slayer — the ultimate baseball beer. Whatever kind of beer you stock, make sure you have a lot of it. Why? Because on Opening Day you will also need…
And they will drink your beer. You see, baseball isn’t the grandest game because of its simple complexity — not because of the inherent genius of setting the bases 90 feet apart (imagine the difference if they were set 95 feet apart); baseball is the grandest game because no matter what happens on the field, it can (and will) be shared among a diverse set of people with blanket understanding. A generation gap does not exist. Excluding the inflated numbers of the steroid era, everyone knows what it means to hit 60 homeruns. And when Grand Daddy recollects a Sandy Koufax no-hitter, batter by batter, forty years after the fact without missing any details, I totally know what he’s talking about. The game is meant to be shared, to be argued, to be held in collective awe by its supporters. This is why I like to spend Opening Day with friends. Besides, it helps to know you’re not alone… so make sure you have plenty of…
Because really, if we are going to be forced to watch another nauseating Yankees v. Red Sox matchup to start the season, we might as well be sauced enough to not mind.
And for me that would start around beer number nine…
So let’s get drinkin’!
Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right!
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***A clean shirt for Pete from Barrington also welcome.