Navigation Versus the Fan

This has been the longest freaking 10 days of my life. I have not been to Chase Field in a week and a half. I have no idea how I am supposed to survive another three days until the Diamondbacks get back into town. It is not just the baseball I miss, I also miss the stadium. I miss the guys taking tickets. I miss the customer service representatives saying hello and asking me if I need any help. I miss Katie the usher meeting me at the top of the section. I miss Bobby Freeman and his organ. I miss hearing the roof opening music and wondering whether we will play the game with the panels opened or closed. I even miss seeing Baxter throwing things from the top of the dugout. I don’t miss Rally Sally just in case anyone wondered. There is so much that I miss when the Diamondbacks are out of town. I’ve started looking for excuses to go on the freeway just so that I can see whether the roof is open or closed. So when my friend Andre asked me if I would be interested in going down to Chase Field with him today so that he could pick up tickets to an upcoming day I jumped at the chance.

We left the office and got into Andre’s hybrid car. Hey, just because we are baseball fans doesn’t mean we aren’t environmentally correct fans. Ok, Andre is the green fan. I’m driving a Suburban making my carbon footprint larger than Shaq’s shoe size. That’s a whole other story though and I’ll leave that for another day. Today we got into the car to begin our journey home to Chase Field. I’ll admit I am a closet geek that loves technology. I’m always trying out some new gadget or technology. I was interested in hybrid technology so I thought this would be a great opportunity to see what this car was like. Getting in I saw that Andre opted for the navigation system. Cool, more technology I couldn’t wait. I started asking Andre about the navigation and he punched a few buttons identifying Chase Field as our destination. He stated that the system keeps track of places where you go and puts them on a list of favorites. I commented that if that was the case then Chase Field would always show up first on my navigation list. Andre corrected me that since the Diamondbacks had been out of town pretty much all month that Chase Field would have moved down the page and not been the first item. Great, like I needed to be reminded of how long it had been to the ballpark. He may as well drive me home and kick my dog too. Oh wait I don’t have a dog.

We started driving and soon we found ourselves at a cross roads of two interstates. He began to change lanes and I questioned him which direction he was going. He looked at the navigation system and stated it said to go North on the 101. I stated that I thought it would be better to go West on the 202 to I-10. He punched a couple of buttons and the navigation system adjusted our route to the 202. Chalk that one up to fan directions 1, navigation system 0. We quickly reached the I-10 freeway and headed north (even though the interstate says we are going west we were definitely going north). I watched the navigation system as Andre drove trying to figure out where it thought we should be going. Shortly we arrived at the I-10/I-17 interchange. According to the navigation system we should take I-17 to the 7th Street exit. Personally I thought that was a bad idea and I suggested that typically you are better off taking the I-10 freeway to Buckeye and exiting there. It is then a short surface street drive to the parking garage at Chase Field. Andre was confident that his navigation system was correct this time. I sat back as he exited to I-17. Within a quarter of a mile traffic came to a standstill. For the next 30 minutes we sat in traffic at a glacier-like pace. I would have to score that one as diehard fan 2, navigation system 0. Mercifully we finally got to the exit and made our way to the ballpark.

It felt good being down at the stadium. There were no lines as we approached the ticket window and Andre quickly purchased his tickets for the upcoming games. No trip home would be complete without stopping at the team shop. I wanted to cry it had been so long since I had seen this much Sedona Red, Sonoran Sand, and Black. Trina of course would argue that our closet has that much Sedona Red but I have told her a million times to quit exaggerating. I ran from rack to rack looking at all the new merchandise making a mental note in my head of all the new items to add them to my Father’s Day with list. I seriously considered just doing my own shopping but I figured Trina would probably kill me. Besides, in my excitement I forgot and left my team shop discount card at home. I had to be content to just look over the merchandise and bide my time until Friday when I would be back down here, this time for a game.

As we left the team shop my heart sank knowing it would be a few more days before I would be back down here. We got into the car to go back to the office. The navigation system booted up as we pulled away from the curb. I thought about questioning the navigation on the best way to get back to work but considering how soundly I had beaten it to get to Chase Field I decided to let it slide. Besides, who cares how long it takes to get to work?

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