For many of us, this is the most wonderful time of the year. While spring sprung in New Orleans weeks ago, the rest of the country is finally shedding its wintry blanket just long enough to fit in a seven-month season of, to me at least, the greatest sport on Earth.
Many fans of baseball developed their love for the game when they played it as a child. That was not the case with me, a pudgy grade-schooler with a major fear of being beaned by what was probably a 15 mile-per-hour “fastball.” No, my love of baseball is tied to my love of America’s other favorite pastime: eating.
Staying on my Little League team meant guaranteed unlimited consumption of sunflower seeds and Big League Chew bubble gum, as well as post-game pizza outings. I associated baseball parks with food. Hot dogs, nachos and popcorn. Yes, please!
Even the game’s anthem knows what’s up: “Buy me some peanuts and Crackerjacks. I don’t care if I never get back!” Never get back to where? Probably to a place where novelty ice cream sundaes aren’t served out of your home team’s miniature, plastic batting helmets. Who in their right mind would want to go back to a place like that?