Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Dad Begins Buctober

Dad is on the mend from both Shingles and a cold, but he, like so many baseball fans across our home state, will be cheering on his team tonight during its first playoff game since 1992.  I've been home twice in the past five weeks, and both visits have been full of Pirates games on TV and talk of "Dad's" Buccos.  A lifelong fan, Dad is known for saying at the start of every season, "THIS will be their year!"--and then, after each of the Bucs' recent twenty consecutive losing seasons, "We'll get 'em next year!"  Finally, this really does seem to be their year, commemorated in Dad's birthday card above in August,  :) and I've been so happy that Dad's gotten to experience their comeback. 
He'll still be thrilled with their performance even if their season doesn't go any further than tonight's playoff game, Dad told me over the weekend.  The bandwagon fans will fall away, he said, but the true fans know what an accomplishment it is that the team has achieved all that it already has this year.  But you can bet Dad'll be yelling at the TV tonight back home, cheering each run and chewing out the umps over any bad calls. 
The mania is sweeping the city.  Local restaurants' windows sport the Pirates' ship, flag, and battle cry. (If you don't already have a favorite team to root for tonight, this video is played toward the end of Pirates games and may sway you toward Dad's buccaneers.)  :)
The Pirate Parrot--with whom I want to have my picture taken at a game someday, although Mike scoffs and says "That's for little kids!"--is seemingly everywhere--
--included in the toys my nephew carries around with him. 
And even Pirates beer has appeared, this bottle on a side shelf of my parents' fridge.   Dad likes baseball because it's a game of strategy--like a chess match--he explained a few weeks ago.  People think football or basketball are the real strategy sports, he said, but Dad thinks baseball is more than any other sport.  I like it when people can articulate what they like or appreciate about something, especially when it teaches me something, so I found that  interesting. 
This is Dad in 1984 with my younger brother.  Now my younger brother is expecting his first baby next month.  Time flies.  Dad's team, however, has remained the same.  Here's hoping they win it tonight--for him, even if he'll be happy either way.  ♥  Hoist the colors!


Lisa said...

I'll be rooting for the Red Sox, whoever wins in the National League.
But, back in the 70's when I was really into baseball, I liked the Pirates - anybody but the Reds! (except Johnny Bench, of course) It seems they had a spell back then when they were in the post season games. Wasn't Willie Stargell a Pirate?
I wish your father much enjoyment, watching his games.

Nellie said...

I am a real baseball fan from many years ago. In fact, I saw the Pirates play one time when they came to Atlanta to play the Braves. I had taken my Dad to the game, a four-hour drive for us. I hope you enjoy the game. We have just found it on our TV! It looks like the Pirates are ahead at this point.

Rev. Jim said...

Val: Having grown up in Chicago (a die-hard Cubs fan) I understand! :) I hope your dad feels better now. We all could use a good game to encourage us these days! :)
Rev. Jim

NanaDiana said...

What a wonderful post and a real honor to your Dad. I hope he is feeling better. I love that last picture of him with your brother. Does your brother look like him now?

Val said...

'Still ahead, Nellie! 6-1 Pirates at the top of the 8th. Dad must be going crazy. :)

Yes and yes, Lisa--and good luck to your Red Sox. :)

You do understand, I'm sure, Jim!!

And yes, Diana. I think they look a lot alike. Even photos of my dad when he was a kid look like my brother at the same age. I think they're the two in the family who most resemble each other.

Thank you all. :) Back to the game!

Val said...

Woo hoo! And they just showed Michael Keaton in the crowd. He's one of my actor crushes. :)

Marie said...

Hockey Season has started back home. You can bet my family members will be found glued to their telly screens rooting for their fav teams! I, myself, am a fan of figure skating. Doesn't get the attention that it should!

Val said...

Hi, Marie. :)

Yes, hockey's big here too.

I want to learn to figure skate--it's on my list of goals. I don't watch the televised competitions much anymore (I don't watch TV much at all), but Kurt Browning is one of my favorite skaters and someone I keep meaning to write about here. And Paul Wylie. And Jessica Dube and Bryce Davison were beautiful together. Do you skate?

Brian T said...

I can't believe Dad raised a Cardinal fan. The fact that he didn't sell me shows his true love. I don't remember seeing this picture before!

Val said...

I was going to email it to you, Bri. :) It's on my flickr too for "virtual safekeeping." :)