Friday, July 6, 2007

Apple Pie & Baseball

For the past two days Ryan and I have been busy doing all things American. Well, almost. We didn't start any wars on false pretenses and we didn't commute the sentence of anyone guilty of a federal crime. At least I didn't, Ryan might have, we weren't together every minute...

Wednesday, of course, was the fourth of July. A day to honor freedom by blowing stuff up. Now, I could go on a diatribe about how the 4th embodies everything bad about America: the overeating, the tacky t-shirts, the showboating, the multiple explosions, but the truth is -- I love the fourth of July. This could have something to do with the fact that my Mother is a fourth of July nut and normally wakes my sisters and me with Neil Diamond's "America" each year, or the fact that the fourth is the one day I am allowed to play with fire, but what I really think it is is the food.

Each year my parents throw what they call their 4th of July extravaganza, which means one thing: truly remarkable food. I think their friends have actually started to try and top each other with their culinary endeavors. A bag of chips is just not considered a worthy contribution at the Mitchell soirée. This year there were bean salads, pasta salads, spinach salads, tortilla roll-ups, ham and beans, ribs and every kind of sausage imaginable. And the desserts -- which is where people really go crazy. Imagine your favorite dessert. Now imagine it better. It was there. And I ate it.

Then the fireworks. the rule for my parents party is that you have to bring a dish to share and one legal firework. We usually end up with what can only be considered an arsenal. We have actually had to start
putting a time limit on fireworks because setting off all of them would take all night. This year Ryan, Dave (my sister Cate's husband) and Luke discovered a new favorite -- smoke bombs. They set off smoke bombs before the party, they set off smoke bombs during the party and then they set off even more during the fireworks using strobe flashers for special effect. We all ended up smelling like rotten eggs, but they had a fabulous time.

The smoke bomb trio.

Yesterday we continued our Americana adventure at Salt Lake Bees baseball game. It was "Thirsty Thursday" which means all beers are half off. Yeah. What they don't tell you is that on Thursday they use half size cups. It should be called "small cup Thursday." Luckily Burke figured out we could still buy the full size beers at the full size price (which I think is actually cheaper per ounce if I were to do the math. I won't, but I could) so a riot was narrowly avoided.

Can you tell which beer was the cheap one? Yeah, thought so.

I love baseball. I don't understand it and I have no idea who won, but it is truly an enjoyable experience to sit outside with friends in the early evening, eating hot dogs and pretzels for dinner, drinking beer, and randomly cheering and yelling at umps. I also love the mascot. I mean, that has to be the worst job in the world. It's hotter than hell, kids pull at you, people mock you and yet you still have to dance around like you are having the time of your life. Each year we try to get the mascot to come over and talk to us at least once. Usually we would tell him that Tara was dying and had a crush on him and wanted to meet him. This year though she wasn't there -- so we had to pull out the big guns -- kids. Luckily Justin has a pair so we didn't have to steal any. The kids were also helpful in the fact they allowed me to buy big foam fingers.

There goes my hero.

There is nothing more ludicrous than a big foam finger. It is the ultimate non-necessity. Also, they can be really annoying. Have you ever been poked by a foam finger? Or had someone offer you a free prostate exam with one? If you haven't you probably haven't been to a ball game with me. But now I am too old for such shenanigans (or at least Ryan thinks I am) so I have to live vicariously through children who area allowed the joy of giving people the finger. They liked the poking, but didn't get the proctology jokes. Maybe next year.

Kids have all the fun.

Tonight I don't know what Ryan and I will do to continue our American dream weekend. I guess we could always just go to Wal-mart and buy guns...


Tara said...

Why do you think I moved to LA? The Bee paid no attention to that restraining order. 400 yards, my ass. And if we called the police he'd just do that little dance where he shakes his stinger and the cops would laugh and laugh...