Monday, April 23, 2012

Take Me Out to the Ball Game?

A few days ago, a friend offered Sooby's dad free tickets to a Kansas City Royals game.  What followed was the indecision that often occurs when people are given an unexpected opportunity with a limited window of time in which to act.  Indeed, serendipity sometimes comes with a catch.

He and Cookie weighed the pros and cons.  It might be fun, but it would take an hour and a half to get to the stadium.  The older kids might like it, but should we take the baby or get a sitter?  It had the potential for a good family outing, but there was so much that needed to be done at home.  And, to top things off, it would mean getting back late, with a relentless schedule on tap for the next day.  Hmmm, what to do?

Privy to this ongoing debate, Sooby was adamant in her opinion that the family make the trip.  "I really, really want to see the Royals," she said again and again.  "Can't we please go see them?"

As the window of opportunity gradually diminished, the decision was finally made.  They would not take advantage of the free Royals tickets this time.  It would just be too complicated.  Surely there would be other chances with better timing and more opportunity to plan appropriately.

When Sooby was inconsolable, no one could understand why.  She had never shown any interest in baseball.  To her parents' knowledge, she didn't even know who the Royals were.  Why, then, had her heart been so set on seeing them?

"Sooby," they asked.  "Why is it so important to you to go to a baseball game?"

"I don't want to go to a baseball game," she replied.  "I just want to see the Royals."

The Royals.  As in royalty.  Apparently, when you are four and you hear the word "Royals," you imagine kings and queens and princes and princesses.  And if you have a chance to actually see them, well, why would anyone not want to go?  In the kingdom of Sooby-logic, the family was missing out on the opportunity of a lifetime.

I can't help imagining what would have happened if the family had ended up in someplace like the left-field nosebleed section of Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.  Sooby would have seen no purple carpet, just grass.  Instead of a solemn procession of royal personages, she would have seen only a bunch of sweaty guys lined up on the field, trying to get their underwear re-situated during the high notes of "The Star-Spangled Banner."

Nope, at this age, I'm afraid she wouldn't have found the experience that much fun.   For now, it is probably just as well to stay home, re-read Cinderella, and snack on a hot dog and soft drink that costs you much, much less than the $8 you would have spent on them at the old ball game.

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