Let’s just have games consisting entirely of Billy Hamilton running around the bases. Everybody else can kick back with some Big League Chew, watch the show, have some kettlecorn.
Game two of three between the hapless Reds (35-58)and the haplessler Braves (32-61.)
THE FAN MISERY INDEX
…may be measured in MOB (Movement of Bobbleheads.)
Much as there was to enjoy in my work at the Reds Hall of Fame, one of the reasons I stepped away is my utter inability to process without curling into a ball nights at the ball park which called forth Bobblehead People. Bobblehead People aren’t normal fans who skip happily away from the seventh inning stretch with their delightful add-on consisting of a terrifying plastic likeness of Ron Oester. A Bobblehead Person–and this guy actually exists–drags plastic tubs to the plaza between GAPB and Riverfront Coliseum (BECAUSE THAT’S WHAT IT’S CALLED), stands one inch off ball park property so security can’t touch him, and bribes small children with tickets to the game to enter the gate, grab a bobblehead, bring it back to him, and repeat.
Once Bobblehead People were done elbowing aside five year olds for their poorly painted products of China which with luck might be worth $14.95 by 2027, they’d come see me at the Wheel of Fame outside the side exit of the HOF. The Wheel of Fame consisted of said wheel, a donation to the museum, and a large sign proclaiming that wherever the wheel stopped, that is what you would walk away holding. Sometimes it was an Eric Davis instructional DVD, currently available on Amazon for the low, low price of $5.99. Sometimes it was a Chapman bobblehead. Sometimes it was Official Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame and Museum Hand Sanitizer.
For the most part, I cheerfully spun away with little kids who wanted to know who Eric Davis was and what he had to say about hitting, or clumps of drunken businessmen who hung around spinning until they all walked away with tiny replica statues of Johnny Bench, then rode triumphantly up the escalator behind me, hoisting their spoils in the air and shouting, “JOHNNY BENCH!!”
And then there were the Bobblehead People, who, denied of their divine right of the large-headed image of Jay Bruce, snatched away their very nice Hall of Fame Posters with many choice words and then did one or more of the following, none of which I am inventing:
- Stalked me as I walked to the ladies room, demanding “what I paid for”
- Hung back from the table, accosting veterans in wheelchairs and second graders who happened upon what they’d wanted, wheedling for a trade
- Approached and re-approached the table between spinners, gearing up as though arguing before the Supreme Court that I should, really should, break the rules, just this once, for him/her, personally, because I should
- Grabbed their money back out of the cash box
Boy did I love my job on bobblehead giveaway nights. By the end of last season, I enlisted my husband as a bodyguard, because when when I got married, it was with personal protection against Bobblehead People Bathroom Stalkers in mind. Wrote it into the vows and everything.
Until this season, bobblehead games always sold out and always saw people gathered in Crosley Terrace well before the gates opened, eager to hold in their hands a trembly version of Mat Latos’ tats.
You can imagine my lifted eyebrows, then, when my sister informed me that her entire family found themselves in possession of Zack Cozart bobbleheads… in July… on a Saturday night… after strolling into the ball park well after the gates opened. And you know why? A greater number of Cincinnatians were in Clifton, preferring to watch a minor league soccer team getting beaten by, as my brother-in-law termed them, “eleven fourth-stringers wearing Crystal City jerseys.”
Thus, I bless you, Season of Ultimate Suck, for protecting my HOF brethren from the Bobblehead People. You’re good for something.
|1. Zack Cozart (SS)
2. Billy Hamilton (CF)
3. Joey Votto (1B)
4. Jay Bruce (RF)
5. Adam Duvall (LF)
6. Brandon Phillips (2B)
7. Eugenio Suarez (3B)
8. Ramon Cabrera (C)
9. Cody Reed (P)
|1. Gordon Beckham (2B)
2. Adonis Garcia (3B)
3. Freddie Freeman (1B)
4. Nick Markakis (RF)
5. Jeff Francoeur (LF)
6. Ender Inciarte (CF)
7. Anthony Recker (C)
8. Erick Aybar (SS)
9. Tyrell Jenkins (P)
|ERA||IP||SO||WHIP||DOES HE EXIST AS A BOBBLEHEAD?|
|Tyrell Jenkins||4.50||14||7||1.64||No, but the Braves recently ran a promotion featuring Chipper Jones rescuing Freedie Freeman on a 4-wheeler, so they’ve got that going for them|
A THING FROM TWITTER
The Summer League championship trophy looks like something they give to the employee of the year at Finish Line.
— Mo Egger (@MoEgger1530) July 19, 2016
And just in case anyone out there misses Thom: Find solace in the fact that he, too, has been gloriously immortalized.
Proud aunt Mary Beth Ellis is a freelance writer and college teacher who lives in Cincinnati, OH. Her home site, BlondeChampagne.com, has existed in at least some form since 2003, and Mary Beth has been a regular columnist with one publication or another from the age of 16. Her first book, Drink to the Lasses, was published in 2006. She currently teaches college, runs personal wine tastings, gives literary readings, and stares into the middle distance.