In case you’ve forgotten, Friday the 13th is visiting us AGAIN! Exactly 13 weeks ago we had the first Friday 13th of 2012, and today we get a second helping of the luckless day. And to make matters worse in 13 more weeks we get hit with a third one. The only thing to do is stay inside to avoid lightning, avoid all black cats, spilled salt, ladders and most importantly … zombies!
Yes, that’s the right cap! You see, I was born and grew up in the shadow of Sportsman’s Park in North Saint Louis where fan loyalty favored Falstaff Beer, the American League, and the Saint Louis Browns. Sure the Cardinals played in the same ballpark, but the Browns had the Knothole Gang which provided free tickets to the kids from schools around the park. And yes, bribery buys loyalty … even though the team was always the underdog. I have nothing against the Cardinals, but I just don’t have that inbred loyalty I had for the Browns. Even though they left town and moved to Baltimore. Hell, even my family moved out of North Saint Louis.
Anyway, since I didn’t have
free tickets for the opening game, I decided to spend my day cutting the back lawn. Unfortunately, Moms Nature had other plans sending chill winds, thunder, lightning and wet stuff. Mlle. Renee wanted me to join her and hide in the safe corner of the basement. But that would only make a gloomy day gloomier. So I decided to cheer-up the house by hanging the quilted sunflower wall hanging that my sister-in-law had made for me.
And it worked, too!
I also downloaded the photos I’d been storing on my camera for the past several weeks to my computer files. One of the problems with digital cameras is you don’t have to worry about the cost of film. So you naturally shoot a lot of photos that you end up wondering why you shot them when you download them onto the computer. Like this … even STL knows East Saint Louis, which is actually in Illinois, is a hell hole.
On the plus side the photo stash on my camera yielded a photo session with Nichole Marie, my second great-niece who is just two weeks old.
As you can see she’s totally photogenic, and I’m convinced that she is destined to become the conductor of a symphony orchestra some time in the future. My niece and nephew are lucky to have such a perfect, beautiful little girl. And Nichole is lucky to have wonderful and caring parents.
And that’s how I spent my Friday the 13th. OK, July 13 … top that!
To be really honest, it is much too cold to be baseball weather, but that didn’t stop a gazillion people (including the first and second ladies of the country) from packing Busch Stadium III. And while I’m not an avid Cardinal fan* I will cheer them on for hometown glory.
*Not an avid Cardinal fan?
OK, if the truth be known I was born during the era when Saint Louis had two baseball teams the Cardinals and the perennial losers the Browns. Oh, there was a time when the Browns were a respected winning team, but that was quite a while before my baseball days. And baseball has always been a bit confusing in Saint Louis. The Browns originally started out as the Saint Louis Brown Stockings of the National Association League in 1875. In 1892 the National Association folded and the Brown Stockings became a member of the new National League and changed the color of the uniform from brown to cardinal red. They also changed their name to the Saint Louis Cardinals to match their new uniforms.
Confused yet? Hold on, it gets better. In 1901 the Milwaukee Brewers of the American League picked up their bats and gloves and moved to Saint Louis. Since Saint Louis was loaded with brewers and breweries at the time and since no one was using the name Browns, the Brewers changed their name to the Saint Louis Browns. They also built a grand new ballpark at the corner of Grand and Dodier … a site that had been home to various ballparks and stadiums since 1866 the year my great-grandfather moved to Saint Louis and started making the red bricks of which the city and ballparks were eventually built. The new ballpark was called SPORTSMAN’S PARK.
Several decades later, I was born and grew up in a house three blocks from the ballpark. Since the Browns owned the ballpark and wanted to fill all the seats, they started the Knothole Gang and gave free tickets to schools surrounding the ballpark so the kids could see the games. I was the recipient of a number of these free tickets, and that’s why I was a loyal fan of the Browns … up until 1953 when the Browns packed up their gloves and bats and moved to Baltimore where they changed the team’s name to the Orioles. Oh, woeful day! However, as you can see, whenever I attend a baseball game I always wear this hat.
MLLE. RENEE SPEAKS!
I, however, am currently protesting the Cardinal’s team, management, and local media and fans. I didn’t mind when the Cardinal mascot was a nice red bird. Birds are my friends, except for grackles. But ever since they racing for a pennant, whatever that is, they have been trying to deify every half-baked critter that comes around as a rally mascot. Really, a turtle? Or an even most probably rabid squirrel? Don’t they know that turtles just sit there? And squirrels will steal your Liver Snaps if you happen to drop one on the ground. If they wanted a really rally mascot that is loyal and would stand by them to the end … win or lose … why didn’t they come up with a canine. I’m just saying, I was available.