Sunday, January 17, 2010

A Good Day With the Knights

It was my weekend to be with Sean.  I was scheduled to call the Mount Saint Mary double header on Saturday at Farmingdale State.  In the past I've been hesitant to bring him to games with me without a babysitter (usually my mom).  But I've started letting him tag along to a few games at The Mount and so far, so good.

Men's head coach Ryan Kadlubowski had suggested letting him ride with us on the bus to a road game and it was something I wanted to make happen, knowing how much Sean would enjoy it.  I could have let Sean stay at my mom's, I guess.  Staying with my niece wasn't an option, as Laura needed to go to Baltimore to pick up her husband, Steve, home from GitMo for a few weeks. 

It made sense.  Let Sean ride with me and the team.

Still I try so hard to be somewhat invisible.  I don't want to ruffle feathers.  That would be two seats being taken on a very crowded bus.  Everyone trying to censor themselves and not use bad language (not something I ask them to do).  How would everyone react to him?

Initially I sensed some looks, but nothing resentful.  If anything, he was either ignored or looked at as comic relief or even a mascot.  Of all things, we watched Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs heading to Long Island, and Sean had nothing to do with it.  It was one of the players who brought it!

At Farmingdale, Sean stayed mostly in his own world.  I gave him plenty of room to run around the gym (more like a warehouse) before the fans arrived.  Once it was game time, he had to stay near Christine Baker and I, and though I wanted him to stay off the partially-opened (but empty) bleachers behind us, he still got up there, and I just let it go.  He was so well-behaved (other than trying to talk to me while we were on the air - just once).  He watched the games to an extent, and played with his cars and Hess racer, sometimes drawing on his Magna Doodle. 

The women lost the first game, and that's newsworthy - they've only lost FIVE games in their conference dating back over 10 years.  The men's game went no better.  At halftime, Sean said to me, "it's just not our day, Daddy."

On the court, yes, he was right.  But for father and son, it was our day.

Towards the end of the men's game, Christine and I brought Sean on the air to serve as an "analyst."  Typical stuff, and all funny.

We jumped back on the bus to return to Newburgh.  Sean and I would eventually sit with Kevin McDonald, Dylan McCann, and Chuck Magos.  The guys talked with him about favorite TV shows, music, and sports.  He was so excited to be welcomed like that.

Ask Sean his favorite parts of the day, and he'll tell you about the bus (it had a BATHROOM on it!) and the players talking to him.  He liked watching the movie.  The games were almost secondary to him.

We capped it off with dinner at Sonic.  I thought it was a nice reward for being so good.

Coach Kadlubowski wondered when he would be back on the bus again.

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