Hopefully anyone who reads my blog knows that my family is bit Pirates-crazy… as in the Pittsburgh Pirates MLB team, not the Johnny Depp Caribbean guys with funky teeth. And I’ve posted before about how my husband stalked our favorite player, Garrett Jones. I’m not sure I ever posted when the stalking of Garrett went to a whole new level, however…
Last fall, Nick had to write a research paper for his English Composition course, so he decided to write about baseball (shocking!). And being ever so resourceful, he actually communicated directly with Pirates pitcher Jason Grilli via Twitter and asked if he could maybe sit down and interview him… in the name of education, of course! Grilli said “sure!” and gave Nick the contact info for his PR guy so that they could set up a time and place for this interview. (And I’m thinking to myself, “only my husband…!”). So, the next week, Nick was on his way to PNC Park, where he got to meet with Jason Grilli in the Pirates dugout, of all places, and conduct this interview (Nick got the whole thing on video, and it’s pretty awesome, I must say).
In order to GET to the dugout, the Pirates People gave Nick a Press Pass. So, when the interview was over, Grilli shook Nick’s hand and took off… leaving Nick to just wander around in the depths of PNC Park (again, I’m thinking to myself, “only my husband…!”). So, Nick wanders and finds himself standing outside of the indoor batting cages. And then he turns around and who does he run RIGHT into??? Why, Garrett Jones, of course. (Only my husband!!!)
Now, at this point in the story, I fall over laughing… because I can only imagine what Jonesy was thinking when he found himself face-to-face with my husband in the belly of PNC Park. Probably something along the lines of, “Who let THIS guy in here???” There’s no doubt in my mind that Jonesy knows Nick by sight by now… he’s outside after every game, talking to him like they’re old friends. (He did quit chasing him through the streets of Pittsburgh after the initial stalking incident!) And about halfway through the season last year, Nick asked Jonesy one night about the bats he uses… because Nick really wanted to get a “made-for-Garrett Jones” bat to hang on our Pirates wall/shrine. When he told Jonesy what he wanted it for, Jonesy said, “I’ll get you a bat, man.” So, that was Nick’s goal in life for MONTHS, after each game at PNC Park. But the timing never worked out (Jonesy actually gave ANOTHER guy Nick’s bat one night when Nick wasn’t there; that was a sad, sad night!)… and at this point, he still hadn’t gotten Jonesy’s bat.
So, when Nick finds himself standing outside of the batting cages, chatting it up with Garrett, he says, “Hey, Garrett… remember when you told me you’d get me that bat?” Garrett says, “Oh yeah, sure… here… I think there’s one right here.” And, guess what? He gave Nick a Made-for-Garrett-Jones bat.
And I’m pretty sure Nick’s feet didn’t touch the floor the whole way out of PNC Park that day.
So, fast forward a few months to today… when the custom-made CASE that Nick has ordered for this beloved bat arrives at our house. Nick was worse than a kid on Christmas. This case is something else. It’s beautiful wood. Velvet-lined. Holds the bat and a ball (we might have a FEW Garrett Jones-autographed balls lying around this house… just a few). Oh, and it has lights. Yes… lights. As in battery-powered lights that attach to the top of the case and shine down on this bat. (I’m giggling on the inside at this point, thinking, “For real???”) But, okay… lights. Nick is showing me how this works, and he’s so excited (kid on Christmas, I’m tellin’ ya). Then, Avery says, “Hey, Dad, what’s this key for?” Oh, because you can LOCK this case… so no one can steal the bat. And I’m thinking, “Okay, so they’d have to steal the whole case instead, which isn’t much bigger than the bat, so big deal.” UNTIL my husband then goes on to explain that… this case? You don’t just sit it on a shelf. Oh, no. It has a spot, hidden behind the velvet lining, so that you can SCREW IT DIRECTLY INTO THE WALL. Into the wall, People. And Nick tells me this with this huge “Aha! See there???” shit-eating grin on his face (we’re wayyy beyond Christmas at this point… I don’t really even have words for it).
And at this point, I can’t control myself any longer. I bust out laughing… like, snorting and falling out of my chair and my eyes are watering and I’m starting to choke I’m laughing so hard. And I say to my husband, “We don’t have ANYTHING locked up in this house… nothing we own. But thank God we can lock up that BAT.” (More hysterical laughing.) I say, “Yeah, come on in and take whatever you want… but you won’t get the Garrett Jones bat because, look! It’s MOUNTED ON THE WALL, Sucker!!!!!!”
Nick then looks at Avery and says, “Avery, I think she’s making fun of me!” Ya think??? Of course, that made me laugh even harder. I was a hot mess for a while there. Seriously worked up.
I know I’m going to sleep better tonight, knowing that the Garrett Jones bat that we’ve so carelessly left lying out in the open for anyone to run in here and snatch is now securely locked up in its custom-made, velvet-lined, lighted case.
Oh, and also… my husband is freakin’ adorable!! 😉