Oh Yes It’s 80’s Night and I Feel Alright

I think my family could probably be considered a typical baseball fan family. Ok let me rephrase that. If I take myself out of the equation, I think my family probably represents a typical family of baseball fans.

Let me explain what I mean. Each season I have a personal goal to attend every Arizona Diamondbacks game. My wife and children on the other hand seem to think that there is something besides baseball (I know I don’t understand that either and have to live in this hostile environment).

Before the season starts I typically pencil my name on the calendar next to every Diamondbacks game on the schedule. IMG_0940.jpgMy wife will come behind me and erase all of the away games and I will get the lecture that there is no way I am going to be able to travel on the road with the team. My kids will then follow and put their names next to each game they want to attend (or more accurately they will put their names next to specific games where they will “babysit dad” at Chase Field). My wife will then follow along and adjust any games for conflicts and finally will put her name in any remaining games that were unclaimed.

There will be certain games with conflicts such as bobble head games, days with cool stadium giveaways, and Opening Day where everyone wants to go. In those instances we will buy additional tickets so the entire family can go.

Every once in a while a game will slip through the cracks where we didn’t buy extra tickets but more than one family member suddenly decides they want to go. In that case there could be some negotiation or trading that will take place. If the disagreement gets too bad it usually ends with me buying another ticket.

Finally there is situation such as today. The promotional schedule merely said “80’s Night” with no giveaway. It was a game that was left over meaning my wife would be attending the game with me. As this home stand approached we heard from my daughter who had been away at college. She would be coming home on August 15 and was wondering if there was a game.

When I mentioned yes there was and it was “80’s Night” she let out a shriek of delight. She definitely wanted to go to that. As her other siblings talked to her on the phone she related the stories of how much fun she had at 80’s night last year. As the phone was passed from child to child each would come to me and tell me they wanted to go to the game on August 15.

IMG_0933.jpgBy the time the call ended every member of the family now wanted to go to the game. It had nothing to do with the Diamondbacks playing the Los Angeles Dodgers. They could care less about the opponent. They were interested in dressing up in clothes from the 1980s and acting like crazed 80’s kids.

Personally I had no idea what the big deal was. I lived through the 80’s and quite frankly they didn’t do much for me. Perhaps my point of view is too subjective considering most of the clothes in my closet which don’t have Diamondbacks logos on it are from the 80’s.

I am not one to complain if I have to get extra tickets. I would much rather have large crowds at Chase Field than small ones so if I had to add five additional tickets so be it.

As game time approached my kids began to get “into character”. As they came down the stairs I stared unbelieving at what I was seeing. It had been nearly 30 years since I had seen that much spandex, neon, leggings, and headbands. Surely we didn’t look that bad back then. When the kids stated that they based their costumes on the contents of my closet; I realized that Goodwill was about to get a very large donation as soon as the season was over.

IMG_0935.jpgThe crowds at Chase Field were unusually large today. The Diamondbacks have been averaging a little less than 30,000 fans this season but today’s game looked to be well over 40,000. That might have been good news had it not been that nearly half of these fans were dressed in Dodger Blue.

Those not dressed in Dodger Blue seemed to have also raided my closet. At first I thought I had made a wrong turn and somehow ended up at University of Phoenix Stadium to see an Arizona Cardinals game. I hadn’t seen this many shoulder pads since the Super Bowl. In this case the shoulder pads were accompanied by poofy hair and bracelets up to the elbows.

Besides the fans, the Diamondbacks had also procured the services of several 80’s entertainers. There were Star Wars storm troopers accompanying Darth Vader (who looks an awful lot like Jon Rauch without the neck tattoo) and R2D2 (who could have been Augie Ojeda’s twin brother).

Seeing the cast of Star Wars would have been strange enough but as we continued to walk we also met several Ghostbusters and Robocop. I’m not sure how safe I felt seeing 5 guys and a girl wearing unlicensed nuclear particle accelerators on their backs. I was staring as I was walking and nearly ran into Robocop who had his gun drawn.

I was slightly taken aback at the sights on the concourse but nothing prepared me for coming face-to-face with some guy dressed like Pee Wee Herman. My head was spinning and as Pee Wee Herman began dancing to the song “Tequila” I ran to my seats. Once the game began I would be fine, or so I thought.

The Dodgers jumped out to an early lead and were cruising to what looked like a game-two victory. In the sixth inning the momentum changed led by one of the most frightening things ever seen at Chase Field.

IMG_0942.jpgNo I am not talking about Pee Wee Herman dancing with one of the Ghostbusters; I am referring to the comeback hit by Diamondbacks second baseman Rusty Ryal that hit Dodgers starter Kuroda directly in the head ricocheting into the stands for a ground rule double. As Kuroda lay on the mound the crowd held its collective breath hoping he would be alright. Although he was carted off the field on a stretcher word came back that his injuries were minor and he would be ok.

With the Dodgers bullpen the Diamondbacks were able to come back tying the game in the ninth inning sending the game into extra innings where Gerardo Parra would come to the plate and deliver a hit that would win the game.

The night was almost perfect. I could have gone home extremely happy had it not been for the camera operators at Chase Field who found Rally Sally and put her on dbTV. For whatever reason, Rally Sally was dressed in a duck costume with a tye-dye shirt. I have no clue what was the significance of the duck costume. All I know was at that exact moment I wished I had an Elmer Fudd costume. I was pretty sure it was no longer wabbit season, it was now duck season.


  1. Rally Sally was dressed as Howard The Duck…as in the 80’s movie of the same name. I don’t know why you have such disdain toward her…she is actually a very awesome and sweet person when you get to know her like I have. She’s as much a fan of the team as the rest of us are. We all express our appreciation and gratitude, even our support if you will, for the team in various ways. I see nothing wrong with her ways either.

    I want to say I enjoy reading your posts here and this is no exception. I had a great time at 80’s Night, despite the obnoxious Dodgers fans in my section (317 that game). I love going to the games. Don’t kill me for also being a fan of the Rockies. They were my first baseball lvoe before the Dbacks became a team and I am still very impartial to them too, plus I grew up in Colorado.

    Keep the awesome blogs coming!

  2. Ah Howard the Duck. How in the world could I have possibly forgotten about that 80’s classic movie (maybe the shock treatments have worked)? 🙂

    I appreciate Rally Sally’s passion, I just think she steps over the line by making it about her rather than the team. I love fans to be passionate and into the game. What I have an issue with is when they try to become bigger than the game. She’s too fascinated in making sure she is on dbTV rather than just cheering for the team. I will give her credit, she does come to the games and shows loyalty to the team.

    Yes 80’s night was a lot of fun. I did like the part where the Diamondbacks made 30,000 Dodger fans scream in terror then go suddenly silent in the ninth inning as a tribute to the Star Wars fans in the audience.

    I would never disparage you for being a Rockies fan. After all, before the Diamondbacks I was a recovering Chicago Cubs fan (it’s a disease that is treatable but alas it is not curable).

    Thanks for stopping by and for the comment; I really appreciate it!

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