The Season Tickets are Here!

One of the most exciting days of the year for any Season Ticket Holder is the day that your tickets for the upcoming season arrive. This is also the time of year that the mailman in my neighborhood dreads the most based on my behavior in years past. I would like to believe I have mellowed through the years but in all honesty, I’m just getting older.

After 17 years of basically the same thing happening every year at this time I have to believe that there must be a some sort of operating procedure at the post office to try and protect mail carriers from being attacked by rabid die hard baseball fans waiting for envelopes of Season Tickets to arrive at their mailbox.

Season TicketsThis year the mailman did not even bother to put the tickets in my mailbox. Instead his little mail mobile stopped in front of my house and with all the stealth of a finely trained ninja he used the cover of the weeds that are growing in my front yard (no doubt due to the fact that I have not gotten that far down my wife’s honey do list) and slipped onto the front porch where he carefully laid a package with all the care of dropping off a baby at the doorstep of an orphanage.

A quick ring of the doorbell and he ran back to the mail mobile and sped off. Well maybe sped off might be too strong a description since the mail mobile has a top speed of 3 MPH as near as I can tell. But I can assure you, the mail man had the pedal to the metal at least until he got to the next mailbox.

I opened the front door as the mail mobile puttered off and looked down. There it was, a large white envelope with my name on the label. The return address showed the Arizona Diamondbacks. I can’t be certain but it seemed as though the envelope was basked in a halo of golden light and I could hear angels singing. Ok maybe it wasn’t heavenly light or the voices of cherubs. It could have been the glare from the mirrors on the mail mobile that was still puttering along and was now just past my driveway.

The source of the light or the sound didn’t matter; there I was staring down as the most beautiful sight in the world. I carefully knelt down and cradled the package in my arms gently returning inside the house.

In a hushed and reverent voice I called all of my family to quickly come to the kitchen, “Something WONDERFUL just happened!” I laid the envelope on the table ever so softly not wanting to disturb its contents. I stood there looking down on this package from heaven, a tear of joy trickled down my cheek.

After what seemed like an eternity my family all came down to see what the commotion was all about. The looks on their faces were priceless. And by priceless I mean they weren’t worth anything. My kids rolled their eyes and one of them whispered, “dad needs medication”. I ignored the murmurings and continued.

The ritual typically goes that we hold hands around the table containing the season tickets. I talk about how God is a baseball fan giving proof by quoting from Genesis where He starts out, “in the big inning”. I then talk about when my people were in bondage where the only baseball we had was on television or at minor league parks until one day the Baseball Gods blessed the city of Phoenix with their own franchise and it was good.

As is always the case, the ceremony ends with us bowing our heads as I recite a simple prayer for a long season with bountiful wins and if it be the will of the Baseball Gods that the Designated Hitter rule be struck down for the blasphemy that it is. The prayer usually ends with, “may our cleats be swift and may our balls be straight unless we are trying to throw a breaking ball then please ignore that last part, amen”.

I then carefully open the envelope and remove the contents. A heavenly light shines down upon the packets (yes, the mail mobile is still slowly moving in front of the house). I stare down at the table in a hushed moment.

Two season ticket booklets and a season worth of parking passes for the upcoming year at Chase Field. Bursts of “Hallelujah, Hallelujah!” can be heard from Angels, Padres, and an occasional Mariner.

I carefully open each ticket booklet raising it to my face and smelling. To most people it smells like freshly printed paper and ink but to me I get an aroma of grass, peanuts, and freshly oiled baseball gloves.

Each ticket has the ability to unlock history. At one of these games there could be a no-hitter or perfect game. Someone may hit a game winning home run or hit for the cycle. The possibilities are endless and there on that page I have the keys to unlock all that these tickets represent.

It’s like having all of my hopes and dreams neatly packaged into 81 individual gifts of joy. How can you not get excited for that?

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