Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Oh, those shimmering lights of the city

My big home town past comes creeping back into my small town life in some indirectly roundabout ways.

A fellow father of a 4-year old and I were standing next to each other on the soccer field sidelines, having a good time watching our respective kickers trying to figure out the rules of the game.

We engaged in the verbal shorthand that men use to communicate with and in less than 5-minutes of conversing, we had each other pretty much sized up, figured out, and knew the boundaries of what could, couldn't and wouldn't be discussed in our short time together as seasonal sideline soccer Dads.

Turns out what we both knew about the rules, the strategies, and intricacies of the most popular foot-based round ball game in the world, could fit into the small slots between the sections on the top of the phillips screwdriver attachment on the swiss army knife in my pocket.

However, he was a baseball fan from way back. Even had an opinion on the only thing baseball I'm relatively familiar with -- the proper way to eat a Dodger Dog (onions drizzled on from the crank-em-on apparatus and yellow mustard).

That tidbit of baseball knowledge led our talk down the path of how he knew of such things and it turns out his folks had done what we did, only they did it 20 something years ago -- made the migration from LA to small town Oklahoma.

All these years later, he still bleeds Dodger blue.

Sadly, his Los Angeleno-native Mom had passed away a while ago preventing us from meeting and commiserating over our shared situation. Had we had a chance to meet, the first thing I would have proudly shown her (well, maybe not the first thing, but I would have probably gotten around to it eventually) was this wonder of kitsch kulture that sits proudly next to the editing station in my office...

A little background...it came in the daily mail without warning or advanced notice of any kind.

The box was large and heavy for it's size and was addressed to my wife..."and family."

Now, I know the sheer joy my wife derives from coming home to an unopened piece of mystery mail -- especially a box of unknown contents. So I let the box remain a black hole for the few hours between it's arrival on our front porch and her arrival home from work.

A brief note inside revealed it's origins and sender's generously humorous intentions. After a quick search for a free edison outlet and the dimming of the 75 watt bulbs in the playroom, the twinkling lights of the city of my youth had come to our small town home.

The only thing missing was a Dodger Dog.

BTW...just what does one eat a soccer game?

P.S. to R and R in Coeur d'alene, thanks for the twinkling bit of home. The girls and I are digging it.


Unknown said...

I was always too busy "cheering" at my kids' soccer games to eat anything. I never did learn the rules.

That's a very cool gift.

Kirsten said...

When I played soccer in junior high, orange slices were big for the players at halftime. Haven't a clue what the parents ate, though.