A few games back my son Dakota had the opportunity to take the field with Orlando Hudson. When he was selected for this honor we were told that the Diamondbacks would provide a baseball to each of the kids so that they could obtain an autograph from the player to commemorate their experience. Dakota took a pen since he wasn’t sure whether O-Dog would be carrying one. He went down onto the field level while I stayed in the stands to take pictures. When he lined up with the other kids they found out that the team had only 3 baseballs to split among 8 kids. I’m no math wizard but even I could see this was not going to go well. Three of the kids were given baseballs and the other 5 were given nothing. Dakota happened to be one of the ones without a ball. Being the resourceful kid that he was he took his pen and after the National Anthem he asked Orlando if he would sign the back of his Diamondbacks jersey. Hudson graciously accepted and Dakota came away with a priceless memento he will cherish that for the rest of his life. This experience was not without its drawbacks. Dakota is not the cleanest kid in the world and so there was a tremendous amount of pressure by Trina to let her wash the jersey. This of course hearkened back to the tragedy of 1999.
During the 1999 season Tiffany had a jersey that she took to the ballpark and had Diamondbacks closer Matt Mantei autograph it. When she got home she took the jersey off and dropped it on her floor (along with every other piece of clothing she owned according to Trina). Trina picked up the dirty clothes and began to do the weekly loads of laundry. Among the items being washed was Tiffany’s autographed jersey. Before tossing it into the washing machine Trina caught herself and pulled out the shirt. She found pen marks on the back and pre-stained the garment before washing it. She was feeling pretty proud of herself that she was able to get all of the ink off Tiffany’s favorite shirt. I am not sure who was more devastated, Tiffany or me. So when Dakota and I got home Dakota immediately put a note on the shirt with the simple instructions, “DO NOT WASH”. The problem is that this jersey is the only Diamondbacks jersey that Dakota owns. Since his birthday is coming up shortly we decided that a new Diamondbacks jersey would be the perfect gift. I have to say here that I have always thought a Diamondbacks jersey would be the perfect gift but for the first time Trina was now agreeing with me with the stipulation that a jersey was the perfect gift for an 11 year old boy on his birthday. It was not the perfect gift for Mother’s Day or a wedding anniversary. What is up with that? You can’t put qualifications on the perfect gift. That’s what makes it perfect, that it is appropriate no matter what the occasion. I didn’t want to argue the point (at least not until after Mother’s Day since my shopping for that occasion is already done and wrapped in a Sedona Red box containing the best that the Team Shop can offer).
Trina and I went down to the Team Shop and bought a Diamondbacks jersey for Dakota. It wasn’t just any jersey. This was an authentic Diamondbacks Sedona Red jersey with a tenth anniversary patch on the sleeve. I then took the jersey and had it personalized with his name and number on the back. It was the most awesome thing I had ever seen. What kid would not want an authentic tenth anniversary jersey with his name emblazoned across the back above his lucky number? I went over to the display and selected a white home authentic jersey in size 44 with the tenth anniversary logo on the right-and sleeve and headed over to the cashier. I had not taken more than a couple of steps when Trina stopped me asking, “What are you doing?” Well that’s a silly question, what does it look like I am doing?
“I don’t have a tenth anniversary jersey” was my answer.
“It’s not your birthday” was Trina’s response. What does that have to do with anything? I’ve been a Diamondbacks fan since March 9, 1995 when the team was announced. I’ve been a longtime season ticket holder and have attended more Diamondbacks games than anyone I knew. I just figured that if anyone had earned the right to wear one of the tenth anniversary jerseys it was me.
“Go put that back” Trina said flatly. This is completely messed up. My son has a tenth anniversary jersey and I am stuck wearing a ninth anniversary jersey which by the way was not acknowledged in the slightest meaning that I didn’t get a special patch on the sleeve that would commemorate such a grand event. Just for that I was tempted to take back all the cool things I had bought her at the team shop for Mother’s Day. But I decided I would not stoop to her level. Instead I will shower her with the awesome Sedona Red gifts. Perhaps the guilt will work to my advantage. I can’t believe that Dakota is getting a tenth anniversary jersey and I’m not. This is completely messed up.