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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Nachman at the Ballpark: Once a pleasant setting, it’s now an auditory hell

Why is it that I can listen to an endless loop of searing Bhopal Stiffs gunk…yet end up totally agreeing with Gerald Nachman?

I went to a baseball game the other night at AT&T Park between the San Francisco Giants and the Colorado Rockies. The Giants lost in the 10th inning by one run, but baseball, I realized along about the fifth inning, has lost much more: Part of its serene soul.

The noise between innings—and between batters—was excruciating, the music and visual hype cranked up to hysterical levels as the scoreboard exhorted fans throughout the game to ‘MAKE MORE NOISE!!!” A robot organist tried with pathetic insistence to energize the crowd. Meanwhile, the Jumbotron flashed so much endless and useless information on the confusing scoreboard (like watching a TV game at home on a screen littered with arcane stats) that it all but obscured the modest game below. It was hard to locate the one thing you wanted to keep track of—the balls, strikes, outs and who was at bat.

The fans obliged unconvincingly, having by now been trained like Pavlovian dogs to howl when a bell clangs, but the maniacal order to MAKE MORE NOISE!!! went largely unheeded; even the most exuberant fans have by now pretty much learned to ignore the incessantly raucous sound battering.

Indeed, some of the people around me were oblivious to not just the noise but to much of the game itself, babbling on cell phones half the time. One guy was talking to a friend in another part of the park, waving at him as they spoke, so thrilled at being able to communicate with a pal that he hardly seemed to notice the game even though he was paying the steep cost of $72 for a second row seat halfway up the third base line. We were seated in the row behind Giants owner Bill Neukom and president Larry Baer, busily taking bows and chatting to fans, totally unaware of the constant decibel barrage.

Repoz Posted: June 29, 2010 at 12:54 PM | 167 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: announcers, giants, history, media, television

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   101. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:21 PM (#3574440)
I attempt to keep score at every game but it's difficult when I have to stand up about 8000 times to let people get in and out and can't see the plays because of people in front of me going in and out all the time. I usually give up around the 6th inning.

That's because the concession stands and malls have become a much more frequently sought destination in the mallpark era. It's pretty clear that modern attention spans don't come close to coinciding with the natural rhythms of baseball -- thus the "MAKE SOME NOISE!!" stuff.
   102. base ball chick Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:22 PM (#3574444)
sam

i would bet that the number of people white/black/brown/yellow/pink who sing along at the ballpark who actually know any of the lyrics to the original song is like basically zero

until i went an looked it up, all i ever heard was (basically) cotton eye joe, cotton eye joe, cotton eye joe (repeat about 1000 times)

i think that people just like it because you can sing along without having to know any lyrics. not because the original lyrics are actually about some Black man complaining that some no good *** done took his woman (men/women complaining/boasting that they/some other man/woman done took some woman/man is kind of one of those favorite themes of song lyrics since CEJ was first sung you know what i'm talkin about)
   103. morineko Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:27 PM (#3574451)
#102--I'd say another problem is the lack of vendors in the stands. I've had to get up to get some water because it's not like anyone was actually vending water in the section. I've had the "get up constantly" issue at the Metrodome, which by no means at all was a mallpark, and at Principal Park in Des Moines (ok, that was more that we were in a row full of parents and little kids)
   104. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:28 PM (#3574453)
The lyrics to the song at the ballpark are: (since I only ever knew the chorus, that being the only comprehensible part)

If it hadn't been for Cotton-Eye Joe
I'ld been married long time ago
Where did you come from where did you go
Where did you come from Cotton-Eye Joe

He came to town like a midwinter storm
He rode through the fields so hansome and strong
His eyes was his tools and his smile was his gun
But all he had come for was having some fun

He brought disaster wherever he went
The hearts of the girls was to hell broken sent
They all ran away so nobody would know
and left only men cause of Cotton-Eye Joe

Complaining about that is like the 98-year-old women who write to newspapers complaining the word "scumbag" because back in the 1940s it meant a condom.

That's because the concession stands and malls have become a much more frequently sought destination in the mallpark era. It's pretty clear that modern attention spans don't come close to coinciding with the natural rhythms of baseball -- thus the "MAKE SOME NOISE!!" stuff.


Did there used to be roving hot dog vendors at ballparks, back when the only food at ballparks was hot dogs? Because nowadays the only roving vendors are for beer, lemonade, peanuts and cotton candy in my experience, and there aren't very many of them.
   105. morineko Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:30 PM (#3574454)
There are roaming hot dog vendors at Target Field but I've only seen them in the sections right behind home plate. Since I normally sit in the 300s, all we get up there are beer vendors.
   106. Steve Phillips' Hot Cougar (DrStankus) Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:30 PM (#3574455)
My favorite ball park sound as replicated by MLB The Show: The Charge! Horn.

Everytime it plays in the background when I play the game, it rouses one of my Basset hounds, even from deep slumber. It clearly works on some instinct buried deep in his breeding.
   107. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:34 PM (#3574460)
Complaining about that is like the 98-year-old women who write to newspapers complaining the word "scumbag" because back in the 1940s it meant a condom.

That's also what it meant in the fifties, sixties, seventies, etc. What does it mean now?
   108. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:36 PM (#3574462)
Been played a million times but I always enjoy Roll Out The Barrel at Miller Park

It's a fine song, but what the heck is "tarrarel"? Is it just a made up word because they couldn't figure out a good rhyme for barrel? I hate that.
   109. Joey B. "disrespects the A" Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:38 PM (#3574464)
No arguments from me, but it's not just baseball. Every public place anymore seems to be bathed in noise.

I know what you mean. There are days when I get awoken at 7 AM by the sound of the jackhammers on yet another construction site when I understand why there are people who are desperate to just get away from it all.
   110. Steve Phillips' Hot Cougar (DrStankus) Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:38 PM (#3574465)
That's also what it meant in the fifties, sixties, seventies, etc. What does it mean now?


Yankee fan
Red Sox fan
Phillie Fan

Sorta depends on context.

In seriousness, I have never heard it in reference to a condom in modern parlance.
   111. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:39 PM (#3574467)
Did there used to be roving hot dog vendors at ballparks, back when the only food at ballparks was hot dogs?

There sure were at Tiger Stadium, where walking under the stands to a concession stand was mildly disgusting and the furthest thing from inviting. That's the biggest difference between today's mallparks and the older parks -- the former practically demand that you leave your seat, the latter offered you essentially no reason to.(**)

(**) If White Hart Lane is typical, the EPL parks have keeping people in their seat down to an art. Everybody's there before kickoff, no one moves until halftime, everyone's back before second half kickoff. They may not even have concession stands. And somehow Tottenham Hotspur's bottom line survives quite well.
   112. just plain joe Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:39 PM (#3574468)
Did there used to be roving hot dog vendors at ballparks, back when the only food at ballparks was hot dogs? Because nowadays the only roving vendors are for beer, lemonade, peanuts and cotton candy in my experience.


There were indeed roving hot dog vendors at ballparks, at least at some of them, years ago. I haven't been in an MLB stadium for at least 10 years, not so much because of the noise but because as I get older I don't handle crowds very well (maybe I should go to a Pirates game). Back in the day a friend of mine made an outstanding catch of a foul ball while running up the aisle at Candlestick Park. About two steps after he made the catch he ran over the hot dog guy and sent him sprawling; he managed to hold on to the ball though.
   113. base ball chick Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:42 PM (#3574471)
hot dog vendors?

i've never seen a hot dog vendor at the ballpark

maybe they are down at field level but they are NOT in the cheap seats. it's mostly beer vendors and water/soda vendors and cotton candy vendors.

don't see peanuts since peanut guy passed on. don't see crackerjack, popcorn neither
   114. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:43 PM (#3574472)
i would bet that the number of people white/black/brown/yellow/pink who sing along at the ballpark who actually know any of the lyrics to the original song is like basically zero


You're probably right. I never met a phenomena I couldn't over think, personally. It just sort of cringes me up a bit, that's all.

Also, the song is #### and anyone who enjoys it should be garrotted with the intestines of a pig.
   115. CrosbyBird Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:47 PM (#3574476)
The only thing I hate more than the request for noise (either the "Make Noise" jumbotron message, or the "clap clap clap-clap-clap" request, or "da da da dun da daaa, CHARGE!" plea) is "The Wave".

"Make Noise" on the jumbotron just makes me intensely angry whenever I see it. Not only does it rob the crowd of any ability to be spontaneous, but it quite regularly shows up at incredibly inappropriate times. Your team is down seven runs in the third and there's a bloop single? "Make Noise!" The opposing pitcher just scratched his junk? "Make Noise!" The "Cha Cha Slide" (Everybody Clap Your Hands clap-clap-crap-crap-crap-crap-crap-crap) is an abomination that has no place in baseball. As for the call to charge, I think they should play it only when a player actually charges the mound. That would be awesome.

"The Wave" is unfairly maligned by people who hate the Mets. Back in the 80s, when it was purely a fan-driven event, it was awesome. There was no need for direction from the scoreboard; it was a spontaneous outpouring of fan solidarity, and it was just a wonderful thing to be a part of.

That's the worst thing about all of this jumbotron crap. It robs the fans of any ability to be spontaneous or do anything interesting on their own. There's no silence to allow the fans to come up with their own schtick. I remember sitting in the upper deck at Shea and hearing the thunder of thousands of stomping feet and the roar of thousands of voices. We haven't had a Citifield moment like that yet, but we might never have it, because the soundboard guy will have to inject himself into the fan experience.

(Oh, and in my experience at Shea and Citifield, the music is annoying but not painfully loud.)
   116. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:47 PM (#3574477)
hot dog vendors?

i've never seen a hot dog vendor at the ballpark

maybe they are down at field level but they are NOT in the cheap seats. it's mostly beer vendors and water/soda vendors and cotton candy vendors.

don't see peanuts since peanut guy passed on. don't see crackerjack, popcorn neither


At Citi Field, you pay more if you get an item from a vendor. They want you walking around.
   117. NewGrass Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:47 PM (#3574478)
I grew up in Detroit but now live in Pittsburgh. I root for both the Bucs and Tigers. I find going Pirates games much more enjoyable than Tigers games primarily because they people who go to Pirates games nowadays tend to be fans of the game. Mon - Thurs. night games are the best. Tigers games draw huge crowds, but only about 25% of them are paying attention. I imagine it has always been this way, but it just seems worse nowadays. One big difference between the stadium experiences of 2010 and 1982 is that you are no longer just given the time to just stare out at the field and day dream or just watch the movements of one player. Instead, they are constantly trying to distract you with some type of peanuts vs. popcorn vs. pepsi race on the jumbotron. I can't help but believe that part of what made me fall in love with and understand the dynamics of baseball was the quiet of a stadium with the unassuming commentary of my dad next to me.
   118. Flynn Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:50 PM (#3574482)
(**) If White Hart Lane is typical, the EPL parks have keeping people in their seat down to an art. Everybody's there before kickoff, no one moves until halftime, everyone's back before second half kickoff. They may not even have concession stands. And somehow Tottenham Hotspur's bottom line survives quite well.

They do but the crush is so bad at half-time that it's not really worth going (like Yogi Berra said, nobody goes there anymore because it's too crowded). If you look hard enough at most grounds people are still coming back at the half.

But Tottenham aren't exactly year in year out money makers like MLB.
   119. Flynn Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:52 PM (#3574485)
BTW, I also still keep score. Sometimes I stop after 6-7 innings if I get bored and I want to take a walk, but it's usually great if I'm going on my own as it gives me something to do and concentrate on, and it's a great conversation starter since people will often ask you what so-and-so did in his last AB, or how many hits the pitcher's given up, etc.
   120. CrosbyBird Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:54 PM (#3574489)
Also, the song is #### and anyone who enjoys it should be garrotted with the intestines of a pig.

I can't argue with that, especially the Rednex version.
   121. phredbird Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:57 PM (#3574493)
Did there used to be roving hot dog vendors at ballparks, back when the only food at ballparks was hot dogs?


still have them at dodger stadium, at least where i sit. but its not oldtimey, where the guy has a pot of mustard and/or catsup hanging from his tray or anything. the dogs are wrapped in foil, and he'll give you a plastic pack of whatever condiment you want.
   122. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 07:59 PM (#3574495)
That's the worst thing about all of this jumbotron crap. It robs the fans of any ability to be spontaneous or do anything interesting on their own. There's no silence to allow the fans to come up with their own schtick. I remember sitting in the upper deck at Shea and hearing the thunder of thousands of stomping feet and the roar of thousands of voices. We haven't had a Citifield moment like that yet, but we might never have it, because the soundboard guy will have to inject himself into the fan experience.


The tomahawk chop was interesting for exactly 14 games in 1993. Then they started giving out foam tomahawks and playing "the chant" over the loudspeakers.
   123. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:08 PM (#3574502)
A few years ago, I went to a Nebraska-Colorado game with my Dad, in Nebraska.
Considering that it was 80,000 people in a huge sports arena, it was startlingly quiet. Minimal piped-in noise, crowd roaring when stuff happened (and quiet when nothing was going on).
And the National Anthem was probably my favorite ever: played by the marching band, on the field, without amplification. The crowd sang along, but in a kind of conversational tone, not bellowing. The effect was eerie, and very cool.
   124. PreservedFish Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:09 PM (#3574504)
The tomahawk chop was interesting for exactly 14 games in 1993. Then they started giving out foam tomahawks and playing "the chant" over the loudspeakers.


The Mets' recent version of creativity stifled is the "Jose Jose Jose" chant, which I thought was terrific when it was spontaneous and celebratory. That lasted about a month. Maybe just a week. Now it's just a very annoying sound effect that's played almost every time he's up at bat. They just used the first shitty avaiable "ole ole ole" recording - now when I hear it I feel like falling asleep.
   125. I Left Tim Raines Down In Africa Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:15 PM (#3574508)
The tomahawk chop was interesting for exactly 14 games in 1993. Then they started giving out foam tomahawks and playing "the chant" over the loudspeakers.


This.

I was a Braves fan back in the 80s (and before), and the only chants you heard then were twofold:

1) silence
2) BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO (usually directed toward the home team)

Again, speaking as a 30+-year Braves fan (being born into a family of Boston/Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves fans), the generation of bandwagon Braves fans is equally as loathsome as bandwagon Yankee fans, bandwagon Red Sox fans, et al.
   126. base ball chick Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:16 PM (#3574511)
SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 29, 2010 at 03:47 PM (#3574477)

At Citi Field, you pay more if you get an item from a vendor. They want you walking around.


sigh

watching baseball game = bad
NOT watching baseball game = good

no wonder more and more people think baseball is boring. no one explains it to them in the first place and even if you wanted to it's too loud to talk. and of course the only ones who talk are the females who effortlessly inflate volume to inflict intimate details of their last date. and the males who loudly explain to everyone in the section that lance berkman is a maroon for catching that infield popup when he could have let it drop and gotten a DP...

i know that these days baseball at stadiums is marketed to people who aren't there to actually watch the game - don't ask me why you would go more than once if you didn't have any idea what is going on in the field and you already ate the really horrible expensive ballpark food and drank the incredibly expensive beer/water/soda. yeah you can get very cheap upper deck tickets but why go to a ballpark more than once? especially if the team isn't winning because bandwagoners sure nuff want to be part of The Winning Experience. so after people been there/done that, why go back?

i am starting to get where i got a lot of understanding/sympathy for why so many Old People go on about how things was better Back Then

i gots to get Husband working on that lawn so as i can tell everyone to get offn it
   127. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:18 PM (#3574514)
If it hadn't been for Cotton-Eye Joe
I'ld been married long time ago
Where did you come from where did you go
Where did you come from Cotton-Eye Joe


He came to town like a midwinter storm
He rode through the fields so hansome and strong
His eyes was his tools and his smile was his gun
But all he had come for was having some fun

He brought disaster wherever he went
The hearts of the girls was to hell broken sent
They all ran away so nobody would know
and left only men cause of Cotton-Eye Joe


This will show both my age and my complete cluelessness to most types of popular music, but it's almost comical how different versions of the same (ostensible) song can have absolutely nothing in common. As I said earlier, the Freedom Singers version I heard in the early 60's was the only one I ever knew, and it was a beautiful a cappella rendition of the above chorus with verses that were equally evocative, nothing at all like those I copied below the chorus. It would have been far more in place in church than at a ballpark, but when I google the song I now see that there are a zillion other versions, all likely much closer to the one that they play in the stadiums. Live and learn.

-------------------------

The tomahawk chop was interesting for exactly 14 games in 1993. Then they started giving out foam tomahawks and playing "the chant" over the loudspeakers.

Jesus, I'm glad to see that at least one Atlanta fan recognizes this. Although I thought that I first heard it during the 1991 playoffs.
   128. Steve Treder Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:20 PM (#3574518)
Back in the day a friend of mine made an outstanding catch of a foul ball while running up the aisle at Candlestick Park. About two steps after he made the catch he ran over the hot dog guy and sent him sprawling; he managed to hold on to the ball though.


its not oldtimey, where the guy has a pot of mustard and/or catsup hanging from his tray or anything

Yeah, that was what was great about the Candlestick Park hot dogs vended in the stands: they assembled them to order. The guy carried around a bunch of hot dogs in steaming hot water, and a separate section of buns, and a little pot of mustard (Gulden's Spicy Brown, in fact). Order a dog, he'd pluck one out with tongs with one hand while simultaneously pulling out and opening up a bun with the other, plop the dog into the bun, and then slather a bunch of mustard on to it with a wooden spoon, then hand it to you resting in a tiny sheet of wax paper. The best vendors could do this all in about 1.6 seconds.
   129. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:21 PM (#3574519)
Lisa, you really need to discover the joys of ExtraInnings, if you haven't done so already. It's now up to $199 a year, but that comes out to less than a dime a game if you watch enough of them.
   130. Repoz Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:25 PM (#3574522)
then slather a bunch of mustard on to it with a wooden spoon,

At The Yankee Stadium it was a metal dip-stick with mustard grime all encrusted around it.

Delightful.
   131. SoSH U at work Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:25 PM (#3574523)
(being born into a family of Boston/Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves fans),


I had no idea such an animal exists. I wonder if there are any Philly/K.C./Oakland A's fans out there.
   132. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:26 PM (#3574524)
This will show both my age and my complete cluelessness to most types of popular music, but it's almost comical how different versions of the same (ostensible) song can have absolutely nothing in common. As I said earlier, the Freedom Singers version I heard in the early 60's was the only one I ever knew, and it was a beautiful a cappella rendition of the above chorus with verses that were equally evocative, nothing at all like those I copied below the chorus. It would have been far more in place in church than at a ballpark, but when I google the song I now see that there are a zillion other versions, all likely much closer to the one that they play in the stadiums. Live and learn.

Geez, Andy, you must have followed The Dynasty Years from afar (**), because if they made a soundtrack the first three songs would probably be Cotton Eyed Joe, The Song They Play When The Yankees Score a Run, and Black Betty.

Whatever the complaints are about Cotton Eyed Joe (and these are corporations exhibiting these games, you aren't going to hear the Murmur, Reckoning, or Tim of 2010), in context it's much more appealing than God Bless America.

(**) Not that there's anything wrong with that.
   133. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:26 PM (#3574526)
Jesus, I'm glad to see that at least one Atlanta fan recognizes this.


I hate it more than you hate it. Trust me on this.

Although I thought that I first heard it during the 1991 playoffs.


Don't think so. I'm virtually certain the Chop and Chant came to Atlanta in 1993, along with Dieon Sanders.
   134. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:28 PM (#3574528)
And I am wrong. Deion came over in 1991. I thought he was later. My old man brain begins to fuzzy it all up, apparently.
   135. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:29 PM (#3574529)
They were tomahawk chanting loud and clear in Game 7 1991 at Three Rivers as the first of two consecutive gut-wrenching Pirate NLCS losses wound down.
   136. base ball chick Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:30 PM (#3574533)
Sam Hutcheson: Like an angry furby Posted: June 29, 2010 at 03:43 PM (#3574472)

Also, the song is #### and anyone who enjoys it should be garrotted with the intestines of a pig.


sam darling
anyone ever tell you that youse gots this kind of a fetish for violence to necks?
and pig intestines?
what is wrong with plain ol electric cords?


and the rest of all yall

ah does larn sumpin new here EVER day
i had NO idea that scum meant semen

here and i thought it was that icky stuff you get offn the surface of water been sittin in the hot sun too long

it's fascinating how many different words there are for reproductive organs, their, uh, products, the body part responsible for the emptying of solid waste and that waste product itself

unlike, say, the liver or bones
   137. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:46 PM (#3574547)
They were tomahawk chanting loud and clear in Game 7 1991 at Three Rivers as the first of two consecutive gut-wrenching Pirate NLCS losses wound down.


Yeah. I remembered it wrong. Perhaps '93 was when Deion took on a starting role.
   138. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:47 PM (#3574548)
There's nothing *wrong* with electrical cords, if that's what you have. But if you have a reel of dried out pig intestines laying around, no need not to get some use out of them.
   139. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:49 PM (#3574551)
I wonder if there are any Philly/K.C./Oakland A's fans out there.


I have some cousins who briefly made up the last link of a 3 generation PHI/KC/OAK A's fan family. Our grandfather went to medical school and then worked in Philadelphia and came away a big A's fan (we have some of his old scoresheets and programs), their mother (my aunt) was born in Kansas City, KS and she and my mom went so far as to name their dog Finigan after their favorite KC Athletic, and then when my cousins were young my uncle was stationed out at Fort Ord near Monterey during the Bash Brothers perio, and my elder cousin had a little Carney Lansford jersey.

Sadly, my uncle got transferred to Fort McPherson in Georgia and now they're all Braves fans.
   140. base ball chick Posted: June 29, 2010 at 08:49 PM (#3574550)
Jolly Old St. Neck Wound, Marching Through Georgia Posted: June 29, 2010 at 04:21 PM (#3574519)

Lisa, you really need to discover the joys of ExtraInnings, if you haven't done so already. It's now up to $199 a year, but that comes out to less than a dime a game if you watch enough of them.


- andy darling boy
that is a LOT of money (and is also 40 actual baseball games)
and truth is that if i was gonna spend that kind of $$$ i would rather go to the ballpark noise and all

the ballparks really ARE like cathedrals
and it is more than hard to do these days but i used to love to get there when the gates first opened and there wasn't no noise, and go down to next to the dugout and look over that perfect green green grass and just imagine that i could play baseball like grrrls used to Back In The Good Old Days and i could be the best CF evah just like helen callaghan candaele who was just my size and i'd run up that assinine hill making web gem catches just like michael bourn and

sigh

you can't get that with tv

and you don't hafta watch people in the crowd you don't wanna see anyhow along with patty smith talkin to people about how they the Progressive Fan Of The Game instead of the stupid network showing the you know actual LIVE ballgame

and the tv don't show you what the players are actually doing on the field, mostly the pitcher/catcher/manager's nose hair/joe ballplayer running thru the jock strap adjustment drills a little too long etc

and it is getting harder and harder to actually have the time to sit and watch a ballgame from start to finish and i DEFINITELY do not have the time to watch other ballgames. too many kidz/things to do
   141. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:09 PM (#3574571)
the ballparks really ARE like cathedrals


Which reminds me of Ghandi's quip about Jesus. ""I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians." Going to cathedrals is so much better without the Christians around.
   142. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:10 PM (#3574574)
A few years ago, I went to a Nebraska-Colorado game with my Dad, in Nebraska.
Considering that it was 80,000 people in a huge sports arena, it was startlingly quiet. Minimal piped-in noise, crowd roaring when stuff happened (and quiet when nothing was going on).
And the National Anthem was probably my favorite ever: played by the marching band, on the field, without amplification. The crowd sang along, but in a kind of conversational tone, not bellowing. The effect was eerie, and very cool.


Nebraska's Memorial Stadium is an outlier. Fans are well known for their civility, (standing and applauding when the opponent comes off the field), lots of older alums, particularly on the West stands, who don't make much racket, and having attended about 50 home games, yes people do sing along in a conversational tone. They are very much ambassadors of college football. And they have hot dog vendors (and Runza vendors too).

There was also a lot of complaining when they started introducing piped in music before kickoffs and such in the mid 90s, they've cut back I'm glad to say. That's funny you said this after attending a CU game, if there is/was one opponent that might get a Husker fan in a nasty mood it might be CU.
   143. bunyon Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:20 PM (#3574579)
The chop is fine when it's more or less spontaneous at a crucial point in a vital game in the postseason (or pennant race). It's damned annoying all game, every game for months on end.
   144. Random Transaction Generator Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:24 PM (#3574584)
Don't think so. I'm virtually certain the Chop and Chant came to Atlanta in 1993, along with Dieon Sanders.

There is video of Kelly Gruber and Roberto Alomar mocking the tomahawk chop when crossing home plate in the 1992 World Series recap on the MLB dvds.
   145. TerpNats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:29 PM (#3574588)
To baseball chick: I envy your husband. What a great fan you are!
   146. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:30 PM (#3574591)
The Mets' recent version of creativity stifled is the "Jose Jose Jose" chant, which I thought was terrific when it was spontaneous and celebratory. That lasted about a month.

Sounds like the old White Sox chant for Jose Valentin
   147. Vailsoxfan Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:32 PM (#3574593)
Try a Cape Cod League game sometime...Its 100% organic and great atmosphere at the ball parks I have been to.
   148. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:39 PM (#3574598)
I really enjoy A ball.

So do Lance Armstrong's girlfriends.
   149. DL from MN Posted: June 29, 2010 at 09:48 PM (#3574606)
Target Field has carried on the abomination of "Proud to Be An American" during the 7th inning stretch which I would guess was chosen because one of the lyrics says "Minnesota". It's like everything bad about "God Bless America" and "Thank God I'm a Country Boy" all wrapped up into one.
   150. TerpNats Posted: June 29, 2010 at 10:18 PM (#3574628)
Target Field has carried on the abomination of "Proud to Be An American" during the 7th inning stretch which I would guess was chosen because one of the lyrics says "Minnesota". It's like everything bad about "God Bless America" and "Thank God I'm a Country Boy" all wrapped up into one.
If you're going to be patriotic, at least do it with soul and play Ray Charles' magnificent version of "America The Beautiful" -- the real national anthem.

So we're agreed: get rid of Cotton-Eye Joe and replace it with some horrible dance-mix version of Stagger Lee?
Or "Land Of A Thousand Dances," preferably the Cannibal and the Headhunters version (East L.A. barrio rock at its finest) instead of Wilson Pickett's more perfunctory rendition. However, I fear it isn't kitschy enough for today's audiences.
   151. thread killer Posted: June 29, 2010 at 10:30 PM (#3574634)
I was at ATT last night and they need more than the bells and whistles to get people to come in. I know it was a Monday night, but the place was maybe 3/4 full for the opening game against the Dodgers on a nice night. Seems to put to rest all those distractions being effective in bringing in the non-fan.

The only thing I remember besides the game last night was the guy that proposed to her girlfriend on the Jumbotron that was made to look like one of those corny games they do between innings. They are both sailors in the Navy on the same boat so I am not sure how that marriage is going to work out.
   152. I Left Tim Raines Down In Africa Posted: June 29, 2010 at 10:39 PM (#3574641)
They are both sailors in the Navy on the same boat so I am not sure how that marriage is going to work out.


Oh...sorry...we were looking for a "seamen" joke. "Seamen".
   153. The Polish Sausage Racer Posted: June 29, 2010 at 10:43 PM (#3574643)
I do get tired of all the racket at games; it was almost shockingly quiet when we went to Wrigley last year after being bombarded by the noise at Miller Park all season. Nice.

There was a hot dog vendor up in the cheap seats at Miller when we were there last week. Unfortunately, what we really needed with the oppressive heat and humidity was a water/soda vendor but there were none of those to be seen. All the beer you could guzzle though.

While people are extolling minor league games, hands down the worst is the Madison Mallards in the independent league. It's nonstop random noises and bizarre in-jokes from long before the game until after. It's at deafening levels too, and really obnoxious. Frequently they don't even stop for pitches, either, which is way beyond the pale. Are you people here for baseball, or what?
   154. thread killer Posted: June 29, 2010 at 10:52 PM (#3574649)
Oh...sorry...we were looking for a "seamen" joke. "Seamen".



Thank you ....you will be here all night......
   155. The District Attorney Posted: June 29, 2010 at 11:00 PM (#3574661)
I will admit that I do like "everybody clap your hands!" *clapclapclapclapclapclapclapclapuntoinfinity*

As for "Cotton-Eye Joe", I suggest it be replaced with A to Z Blues.

what the heck is "tarrarel"?
This is an odd coincidence, but apparently there is a (not recently updated) sabermetric blog called whatsatararrel.com.

The problem, of course, is that it doesn't explain what a tararrel (or a tarrarel) is.

It's MC Pee Pants, right?

Well, he does like candy.
He eats people juice! No one's gonna hire a people juice eater!

Fine, the Cubs might give him a nine-figure contract.
   156. Dan Evensen Posted: June 29, 2010 at 11:02 PM (#3574664)
They were tomahawk chanting loud and clear in Game 7 1991 at Three Rivers as the first of two consecutive gut-wrenching Pirate NLCS losses wound down.

I can verify this, as I recently found and re-watched a video tape copy of this game.
   157. vortex of dissipation Posted: June 29, 2010 at 11:58 PM (#3574718)
Target Field has carried on the abomination of "Proud to Be An American" during the 7th inning stretch which I would guess was chosen because one of the lyrics says "Minnesota". It's like everything bad about "God Bless America" and "Thank God I'm a Country Boy" all wrapped up into one.


Perhaps they should use Soundgarden's "Outshined", instead?
   158. Spahn Insane Posted: June 30, 2010 at 01:02 AM (#3574773)
Rednex is (was?) Swedish? Huh.
   159. Spahn Insane Posted: June 30, 2010 at 01:04 AM (#3574777)
Speaking of minor league parks (sorry--kinda late to the thread here): anyone have experience with the Cedar Rapids park? I'm going to a Kernels game this weekend.
   160. TerpNats Posted: June 30, 2010 at 01:13 AM (#3574782)
While people are extolling minor league games, hands down the worst is the Madison Mallards in the independent league. It's nonstop random noises and bizarre in-jokes from long before the game until after. It's at deafening levels too, and really obnoxious. Frequently they don't even stop for pitches, either, which is way beyond the pale. Are you people here for baseball, or what?
I recall going to a Madison Muskies game in 1984, when the city was in the Midwest League. (IIRC, Tim Belcher pitched that night.) For the time, the fandom there was considered rather avant garde, with the constant cheer of "Let's go Fish!" Sorry to see the game experience decline there; then again, now that the U. of Wisconsin no longer fields a baseball team, perhaps the city has lost a bit of its baseball soul.

Hope to attend a Lynchburg Hillcats game here next week; have no idea what the game experience will be like. When I lived in Prince William County, I went to one Potomac Nationals game -- it was fun, but not much more.
   161. OsunaSakata Posted: June 30, 2010 at 01:55 AM (#3574825)
I always found it incongruous to hear the Tomahawk Chop, followed by the 7th Cavalry Charge.
   162. Sean Forman Posted: June 30, 2010 at 01:56 AM (#3574827)
Speaking of minor league parks (sorry--kinda late to the thread here): anyone have experience with the Cedar Rapids park? I'm going to a Kernels game this weekend.


All I can say is no one ##### with Mr. Shucks.
   163. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: June 30, 2010 at 01:59 AM (#3574831)
perhaps the city has lost a bit of its baseball soul.

Baseball whores. There has always been a strong Cubs contingent and as a latent Cubs guy from my youth I bear no grudge. But when the Brewers and Cubs were tossed in the same division Madison decided to throw its hat into the Cubs ring. And became truly insufferable in 2008.

Madison, home of wanna be hippies, wanna be commies, and wanna be Cubs fans.

Makes me want to puke.
   164. I Left Tim Raines Down In Africa Posted: June 30, 2010 at 02:03 AM (#3574838)
Hope to attend a Lynchburg Hillcats game here next week; have no idea what the game experience will be like. When I lived in Prince William County, I went to one Potomac Nationals game -- it was fun, but not much more.


I grew up in that area (Lynchburg). It's a lot more "pure" baseball than you'd think. There's not a ton of goofy sound effects or anything, and the ballpark's a pretty comfortable place. I'd strongly suggest sitting on the third base side to avoid getting the sun in your face for the first few innings.

I'm curious to find out how much it's changed in the last couple of years.
   165. Karl from NY Posted: June 30, 2010 at 09:14 PM (#3575481)
Yeah, that was what was great about the Candlestick Park hot dogs vended in the stands: they assembled them to order. The guy carried around a bunch of hot dogs in steaming hot water, and a separate section of buns, and a little pot of mustard (Gulden's Spicy Brown, in fact). Order a dog, he'd pluck one out with tongs with one hand while simultaneously pulling out and opening up a bun with the other, plop the dog into the bun, and then slather a bunch of mustard on to it with a wooden spoon, then hand it to you resting in a tiny sheet of wax paper. The best vendors could do this all in about 1.6 seconds.


The vendors at Shea would do the same thing, except I think it was a squeeze bottle of mustard. Not sure about Citifield, I've only been there once.

on the Wave, Shea Stadium was particularly conducive to it. All the decks were geometrically uniform and unbroken all the way around, and the upper deck had like 50 rows of seats. Really easy to get critical mass going on a wave, usually with enough fans attending to actually do so, and actually somewhat eye-pleasing (if the game is not compelling at that moment of course.) SkyDome among the parks I've been to is similarly constructed though nowadays lacks the attendance to wave. But Citifield and most contempo-retro stadiums are the absolute opposite, with funny angles everywhere interrupting the flow (Citi looks like a restaurant fell from the sky and landed in the leftfield stands), and smaller seating sections so the wavers have to try a dozen times before the wave goes anywhere, which just looks dumb.

On unintelligible ballpark songs, the winner has to be Lazy Mary. It's in freakin Italian, and most people don't even know the title.
   166. DL from MN Posted: July 02, 2010 at 06:50 PM (#3577136)
play Ray Charles' magnificent version of "America The Beautiful"


Why the hell don't they play that in Atlanta?
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