The Bears lost yesterday in toasty Bears and Eagles Riverfront stadium, making their record 1-2 when I am in attendance. Their pitching was appalling, and their hitting (aside from an all-for-nothing seventh inning rally) was particularly weak. Keith Reed who had been ripping the ball all night finally connected for a grandslam in the bottom of the 7th. The only problem is, that in the top of the 10th, the Bears proceeded to hand the run back making the score 6-5, where it ended. Spoiled a perfectly good story line, that's what they did.
By the time I got to the game in the third it was already 4-0. The Bears got little from their staff, with a couple of mediocre innings out of Edwin Almonte. Ramon Castro (no relation to Fidel, ha-ha) went 4-5, and is on a nice little streak of his own. SeÑor Torres was in a funk all evening, but did have a pile of schwag including a broken bat and a couple of balls, and it appears we have a third (!) season ticket holder among us--some elderly gentleman who has now rotated two different Bears jerseys and one toupe to his three games. We'll call him Lester.
The most noteworthy moment of the evening came on my drive into Newark as I sat at a traffic light for a solid 15-minutes and must have been looking pretty grumpy to be missing what amounted to the Bears sucking it up for three innings. A homeless guy comes past my window shaking a cup and says, "Smile man. It ain't that bad! I'm the one with the cup." I didn't really know what to say, I mean, I've never gotten a pep-talk from a homeless guy.
"Just sick of sitting in traffic," I said, throwin a quarter and a couple nickles in his cup.
"If you really want I'll trade you: your job, your traffic and your car for my cup."
Funny how life smacks you in the face for being an ungracious tool sometimes isn't it? As I finally moved through the light onto the 1 and 9, I felt for my pair of tickets in my pocket. I was on the way to the game alone, with an extra ticket going unused. I wonder if he would have dug taking in a ballgame, eating a pretzel, and shooting the shit. I take him to a game, buy him a dog and a soda, drop him back off on Tonnele avenue and we each go on with our lives. I wish I had asked. I wish I was the kind of person who could have asked.
I sat two rows behind my usual seats. The corporate group that owns the seats behind me seemed to have camped out in both rows. I didn't bother pushing out the guy with the Brooks Brothers polo and Maui Jim sunglasses who was stretched across both of my seats. I milled around the Bears shop during one of Newark's stifled rallies. Felt guilty spending 23 bucks on a hat I'd only wear to games. I went to spend three bucks on a beer but for some reason they weren't serving (let's hope this is a fluke, and not the beginning of a trend) and watched the Bears try to mount a rally. Even after Reed's ball went soaring over the left field fence I didn't have much confidence in a positive outcome. I headed home before the extra frames. It was a lonely game. And a wasted ticket.