May 12th, 2009

A new home, perhaps...

...but same old Amazin', or lack thereof.

Mom and I went into New York City to watch the Mets play the Braves at Citi Field. A great pitching matchup - Derek Lowe vs. Johan Santana. The starters delivered as advertised, with the game 1-1 after six. Santana was lifted after 6 1/3 innings and 108 pitches; I thought he could have gone longer, and given what the bullpen did, I certainly wish he had. The seventh ended up being a four-run inning, and Atlanta won 8-3. Both runs given up by Johan were unearned, so despite taking the loss, his ERA shrinks down to 0.78.

The new ballpark is a vast improvement over old Shea. Even being in the second-highest row of the stadium, I felt much closer than in the old upper deck. The sight lines were nice, and the place was just generally much cleaner and more fan-friendly. I hear the food is great there, but I will have to make a return trip to confirm this for myself. We ate before the game, primarily due to Mom's abhorrence of stadium food prices.

As enjoyable as the game was despite the result, getting back from Citi Field wasn't nearly as pleasant. We leave after the eighth inning and take the subway from Mets-Willets Point to Woodside, to change to the LIRR. I've researched the train schedules, and I know that we want the 10:34 train. About quarter past ten, a passel of people in Mets gear comes running from one train down towards another - and Mom takes off running after them. I plead with her that it isn't the right train - it's bound for Babylon, for Pete's sake! No matter to her - she'll cut any corner that might get us home faster. She asks the conductor if the train will get us to Huntington. It would, so she jumps on, as I continue to argue that it's the wrong train. But once she's aboard, I have only two options - follow her on, or stay behind and wait for the one I'd planned for us to take. I choose the former option, informing her that it's her show now, and if this gets screwed up, it's all her fault. That didn't happen, but the switch didn't produce any end benefit - we still reached Huntington at 11:27. Getting on the earlier train simply changed the point at which we waited for the one that took us home. And then just before we got home, I briefly looked down at my iPod just before a curve (with no other cars around), and she loudly protested. Attempting to drive my car from the passenger's seat is a HUGE pet peeve of mine - particularly when my mother does it. I came very close to yelling, which is a rare thing for me to do.

Despite those mild flaps, we both enjoyed the night out. The one thing I was most surprised to learn during the game is that there exists a National Texting Championship. Wow.