Monday, March 21, 2011

Baby's First Ballgame | Robinson: 1, Mavs: 0

We took Robinson to his first sporting event. It was an NBA game between the Dallas Mavericks and the Memphis Grizzlies. Steve, Rob, and I dressed out in our Mavs fanwear, and brought along Uncle Scotty.
We have quite a walk from the parking garage, and Scott is happy to carry Rob, despite Rob's persistent squirminess, until we reach Will Call and Rob pukes all over Scott's sleeve. That's always the point at which Baby is handed back to Mama.

Now I'm loaded down like a pack mule with my bulky diaper bag and a baby who gets heavier by the minute and seems determined to wriggle out of my grasp as I cautiously navigate through the crowd of fans, across a very hard floor, wearing heels. I should have stretched first. Steve and Scott don't seem to notice my struggle, and frankly, I don't want to be seen as somebody who isn't capable of carrying her own child, so I have my game face on. I stand patiently with the guys at the concession stand as they order one of everything.
As Steve is moving away from the concession stand, armed with an assortment of snacks, he asks me if I can hold one of his beers. "Are you kidding me? It's taking every ounce of strength and coordination I have not to pull a Britney right here!" Steve laughs, and what I love about him is that he knows exactly what I'm talking about.
It's been five years since I attended a Mavs game. Steve says I jinx the team. I also jinx the Texas Rangers and the Dallas Cowboys. Eff "The Curse of the Bambino", I am apparently the Mistress of Destruction. I just made that up. I don't know how my presence can be responsible for all of those defeats, but I can count the number of games I've attended on two hands, and we've lost every time. It must be my fault. Superstitions aside, I sat with the guys in some fantastic seats on the lower level behind the goal. I'm a person who has a much better time at sporting events if I have great seats. I think it's because I have ADD and am never fully invested in these games, and having great seats helps me to pay attention.

I forgot how loud these games are. Had I remembered, I would have thought Robinson was too young for this. Having forgotten this detail, I had my seven-month-old out at an NBA game that tipped off roughly an hour before his bedtime.

Before tip-off, an usher came by to see Rob. She was probably in her early-60's, and as she greeted me, arms outstretched, it occured to me that she was "asking" to hold my baby. This had never happened before. That's probably why I stared at her, confused, before handing my baby to a complete stranger. She talked to him while he stared at her. She told him that she could be his great-great grandmother, presumably because like Robinson, she has (dyed) red hair. I wanted to ask her exactly how old she thought she was, because Robinson's great-great grandmother is 99.

This is also the day I come to the realization about the subjectivity of color. Because every redhead in my family has either bright copper or deep auburn hair that is undeniably red, I've never viewed Robinson's strawberry blonde strands as "red". I've been telling people for months that I have a blonde baby. However, everyone who meets him says, "Look at that little redheaded baby!" This happened at the game too, and that's when I realized: if everybody is referring to my baby as a "redhead", then that makes him a redhead. My distinction of "strawberry blonde" is meaningless when the general public perceives him as a ginger. So, until further notice, I am the proud mother of a ginger kid.

As the game tips off, the noise reaches a fever pitch, and Rob understandably bursts into tears. The silver lining is that the noise drowns out his sobs, and he quickly calms down. Granny Usher returns, this time with Paw Paw Usher, because she wants to show him the baby. "Look, he goes right to me!" she tells Paw Paw Usher, as she plucks Rob out of my lap. Paw Paw Usher notices Rob is drooling and makes a comment about teething. I was genuinely impressed by his keen observation.
Now, if you're going to attend a sporting event, and you have good seats, and you carry with you an impossibly cute redheaded baby wearing Dallas Mavericks fleece footie pajamas, you're going to draw attention. We were on TV, and on the jumbotron, and at some point during the game, an announcer-type girl approached me and asked if I wanted the chance to win Dave and Busters dollars. I could have said no, but that would have been a lie. When she returns during a timeout, I stand up (holding Robinson facing out for all to see) and she announces that after the timeout, for every point the Mavs score in the next minute, everyone in our section will receive $10 Dave and Busters dollars, but I will win $25. Dirk scored a three-pointer, and instantly I was $75 richer. In Dave and Busters currency, of course.

We brought a toy for Rob to play with, but all he wanted was my Miller Lite draft. I was nervous that we would be seen on the jumbotron or on TV: me, holding Rob in my lap, while he is eagerly gnawing on my plastic cup full of beer. I think that would make me look like a really great mother.
The Mavs lost in the final second, furthering my reputation as the Mistress of Destruction. We waited for the arena to clear out, as Robinson quietly sprawled across my lap, sucking his thumb, attracting smiles from passers-by. He did look very sweet. We considered the outing a big success, and can't wait to take Robinson to his first Rangers game this spring!

1 comment:

  1. I love the fact you did all this in HEELS! You are a Samantha!