Thursday, April 16, 2009
Absurdity at the Old Ball Game
You may recall that I haven't had much interest in Major League Baseball since the 1994 strike (yes, I can hold a grudge for at least 15 years). I pay a scant bit of attention to the Washington Nationals sometimes (since they're 0-7 right now, there's very little incentive to keep track of their doings), but that's mostly because they're local and I need to know a little bit about them to keep up with conversations at work. Overall, though, I have very little interest in the world of professional baseball (a far cry from my childhood in which the Yankees dominated many of my thoughts and fantasies).
There are a lot of absurdities in the Major Leagues these days, but I think I came across the most ludicrous one tonight. A baseball fan is suing the New York Police Department and the Yankee Partnership because he was thrown out of Yankee Stadium during a game last year. Why are both of these entities being sued, you ask? Well, the police are being sued because they wouldn't let the guy go to the bathroom during the 7th inning stretch. To be more precise, they wouldn't let him go during the playing of the 7th inning stretch music - a performance of "God Bless America." The guy tried to keep walking and the police helped him walk right out of the stadium. The reason they wouldn't let him use the washroom during that hallowed moment brings us to why the Yankee Partnership is being sued: the group has "a policy that restricts fan movement during the playing of "God Bless America.""
They have got to be kidding! The man was not at a church service, nor was he at a classical musical recital - he was at a baseball game, a privilege for which he paid hard-earned money to purchase a ticket. The time between innings is when people traditionally stretch, buy refreshments and use the washrooms. The partnership's policy is ridiculous and the police behaved boorishly. I hope the guy wins a significant settlement. Religio-patriotism has reached absurd heights when people have to time their potty breaks not to coincide with the sacred 7th inning stretch.