4&1Left

I split 4 season tickets with the owner of this company. It used to be a 3 way split with my brother but he moved to Alabama after selling his house and hoped to open his own shoe store. Thus, I have 160 tickets to use these days. At the time, few of my friends were Dodger fans, so when my wife or niece don't go, I'd go by myself. I've been going by myself to Dodger games since 1975 and most of the time I enjoy it that way. As anyone who has ever gone to a game with me can attest, I probably talk too much but when I'm by myself I can just concentrate on all the nuances that I love about the game.

On this day I met my Dodger loving niece Heather and her boyfriend, Josh at the game.  Everyone reading this knows what happened, so no need for the play by play. My niece left in the 8th for good reasons. No big deal, I had driven separately just in case this sort of thing happened. In front of me were Bobby and his buddy. We had become Dodger friends, as we'd see each other about 10 times a season. We scored one in the bottom of the eight but we were still down and then Bobby and his buddy left. I told them as they were leaving that they were going to miss "the greatest comeback ever". He reminds me of this every time we tell the story of the 4 and 1 game. So now I was alone like I'd been for numerous other games. Tonight felt different, normally I start out alone but this time I was feeling abandoned, because all the rows were empty around me. With nothing to keep me there I headed up the aisle with the intention of moving toward the empty seats around home plate. By the time I reached the top, Saito gave up some keys runs and the deficit was now 4, so now I was a combination of lonely and dispirited.

I stood at the top of the stairs and for whatever reason, instead of heading for the better seats, I left. A lot of fans left with me, a dispirited, grumpy bunch as we trudged toward our cars. I drive a Miata with no radio since I had broken the antenna in one of my frequent fits of anger since William had died, thus I had no idea of the magic that was being made at DS as I took the 101 home.

By the time I got home my wife was asleep. On autopilot I flipped on the laptop and checked Dodger Thoughts just like I did every day since 2004 after a game. The normal posters were all blathering about something and seemed to be in great spirits. As usual after a Dodger loss, I wasn't in a good mood and didn't understand why they were, so I quickly clicked onto the baseball scoreboard so I could check out what I'd missed around the rest of the league. I saw a news blurb about Nomar hitting a game winning home run and wondered why they still had this news blurb about something that had happened months ago in Houston. At 1st I ignored the blurb but then my curiosity got me and I clicked on the story, and while I was reading it I realized with both a sinking and swelling heart that I'd missed one of the most dramatic comeback in Dodger history. I had to reread the story several times before it really sunk in. I quickly clicked back to Sept 18th Dodger Thoughts  because now I knew why they were in good spirits. I picked it up in the ninth evening and read through a gazillion posts until I'd read them all. Even if I missed the comeback, it was good to be with my Dodger companions at Dodger Thoughts and talk about it. My loneliness melted away since I was with friends again. Dodger friends. For someone who prides himself on being able to handle being alone, it felt good to have people to celebrate with.

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