Each season there is the same ritual. The kids go to the Internet and download a listing of the giveaways the Diamondbacks will be having for the upcoming season. Based upon what is being given, each child develops a list of games they want to attend to collect their goodies. There are sometimes fights over who goes to what game but for the most part, these issues get worked out. Once in a while though there are arguments that get a little out of hand. Today happened to be one of those times. The giveaway tonight was USWest CD Holders. Mallorie had called this game the minute the schedule had been released. No one else was interested in this night so it was settled, or so we thought. As today’s game approached, it became apparent that this was the day Matt Mantei would rejoin the team. Tiffany had saved her money over the winter and purchased a Mantei baseball card that has become her most prized possession. She wanted to go to the game to see Matt and perhaps have him autograph her card. Here was the dilemma. Mallorie wanted the giveaway and Tiffany wanted the game. To complicate matters, Trina wanted a baby-sitter at home. The negotiations were vicious. I have to believe this is what the Israel / Palestine peace talks must be like. In the end, Tiffany went to the game. She had to promise to get a CD case for Mallorie at the door. Mallorie stayed home and baby-sat for Trina. In exchange, Mallorie was allowed a sleep over with her friends. I got to go to the game. Hey wait, I always get to go to the game. I guess I am not as good a negotiator as I thought I was.


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It is always fascinating how different each of the kids deal with going to the game. Tiffany who I brought last night, spent her time before the game hanging out at the field fence calling the players over for autographs. She is very successful at this and usually gets her ball or baseball card signed. It is great that the players take time out of their schedule to stop and sign autographs for the kids. Tiffany has one ball that she is trying to get all of the team to autograph over the course of the year. She is already off to a good start with four players so far. Tonight, I have Mallorie with me. Tiffany has given Mallorie instructions to try and get a Greg Swindell autograph. Mallorie though is not interested at all with having the players sign for her sister. She is much more interested in the social aspects of the game. We had to be at the park early so that she could get the One Card promotional giveaway. Once that task was completed, she was interested in going to the team shop to see if there was something new for her to buy. The remainder of the game was spent networking with her various friends who were also at the game. Somewhere in there, she would watch a couple of innings. Regardless of their reasons, it is great to spend time with each of the kids one-on-one.


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