Sports Cliche’ Week

In honor of the upcoming Major League Baseball All-Star game, this week has been designated Sports Cliche’ Week. From the opening pitch:

It’s a beautiful day for baseball.


To the final glib statement:

Baseball’s played between the lines.

photo 4

I bet you hear dozens of baseball cliche’s during the course of this week’s all star game. In fact, it may be fun to see how many of the following cliche’s are uttered from the mouths of the announcers.

Baseball Cliche’s

He’s got the batters eating out of his hand.
He’s pitching a gem.
He’s pitching lights out.
He’s really throwing some heat.
He can overpower the hitters.
His fastball is really working for him.
He took something off that pitch.
He’s got good mechanics.
He’s capable of going the distance.
This is shaping up to be a real pitchers duel.
This game is a slugfest.
He’s trying to pitch out of a jam.
He uncorked a wild pitch.
Joe is going to try and settle him down.
Stick a fork in him — he’s done.
They got to him early.
They got to him early and often.
He’s getting shelled.
He’s been relegated to the bullpen.
He’s been roughed up in his last four outings.
He hasn’t been getting the run support.
He’s in a slump and he’s pressing.
You can’t steal first base.
He was caught napping.
There’s the insurance run.
That really helped his cause.  (Said after a pitcher scores a run)
They’ve exploded for six runs here in the eighth inning.
They had a six run outburst in the eighth inning.
They have to manufacture some runs.
They have to step up their run production.
Three up, three down.
Swing and a miss.
Good cut.
He was swinging for the fence.
He chased a bad pitch.
Here’s the payoff pitch.
This could be two. (Announcer anticipating a double-play.)
The ball took a bad hop.
That ball should be playable.
This one could be trouble.
He was on his horse to catch that one.
He got a good jump.
The tying run is at the plate.
The tying run is 90 feet away.
They are one strike away.
He can tie it up with one swing of the bat.
He has to wait for his pitch.
He’s seeing the ball well.
He’s a tough out.
He’s a contact hitter.
He hit that ball squarely. (How do you hit a round ball with a round bat — squarely?)
He really got ahold of that one.
He was all over that pitch.
He hit that one right on the screws.
He hit a towering line drive.
That was a good piece of hitting.
In any other ballpark, that’s a homerun.
He hit a solo-shot back in the third inning.
There’s a four-base blast.
Touch ’em all!
He hit a bullet.
He hit a rocket.
He hit a laser shot.
He tatooed that one.
He crushed it.
He sent that one into orbit.
Kiss that one goodbye — it’s outta here!

Enjoy the game, cliche’s and all.

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

We missed the opening weekend of the college baseball season for good reason – a wedding, so this weekend we bought tickets for the Hurricanes v Gators series in Gainesville, but this series always seems to take place on the coldest weekend of the year and Friday night’s game was no exception.
With the game tied 3-3 and the temperature at 38° at 9:47, the primary concern…no extra innings! And as much as we were cheering for the ‘Canes and wanted a win, I can’t say we were too upset when the Gators won on a walk off hit in the bottom of the ninth. I’m not sure how much longer the long underwear, hats, gloves, and blankets could have protected us from the cold and wind.
Take me out to the ball game
Take me out to the crowd
Buy me some peanuts and crackerjack
I don’t care if I never get back
Let me root, root, root for the Hurricanes
If they don’t win it’s a shame
For it’s one, two, three strikes
You’re out at the old ballgame
~Jack Norworth, 1908
Yay! It’s baseball season, and next year this game will be in Miami. I bet the temperature will be at least 20º warmer so we won’t need to bundle up…and extra innings won’t be a problem!
Can you believe this pile of clothes and blankets I used at the game on Friday?

Thankful for Game Time

Thanksgiving is not only a time for food and family, but for games. Sure, we watched a few football games, but the fun comes around the table playing board games andcard games, and outside playing cornhole.

My nephews dominated cornhole.

But I fared better at the table.

Lots of laughter with Telestration due to our lack of artistic talent. However, as you can see from John’s response, not his favorite game!

Cornhole, Lords of Xidit, Sushi Go, Pandemic, Settlers of Catan, 7 Wonders, many games, so little time.

IMG_4546.JPGThankful for a family that enjoys playing games together.





It’s Big Cheese Time

IMG_2938The first weekend of college football season…that brings to mind not only the image of cheering fans, pacing coaches, white smoke, and booming cannons; it also evokes memories of favorite college hangouts.

While The Big Cheese didn’t exist until five years after John’s graduation from the University of Miami, it’s become our go to restaurant following a big game.

After all, what’s better than a hot, cheesy pizza in the company of liked-minded fans all dressed in orange and green basking in the glory of a win or even commiserating with one another after a loss.

According to the dictionary, the definition of Big Cheese is someone knowledgeable and of importance and high standing in an area or field. The Big Cheese certainly lives up to its name…a restaurant of importance and high standing to pizza loving Hurricane fans.

What’s your college sports go to place?

Don’t Be This Guy!

It’s always great attending a University of Miami baseball game at The Light, but when we arrived at the game on Friday afternoon I was more than a little disappointed to see the location of our seats. Sitting in Section D was not the problem since these are chair back seats directly behind home plate, however, upon seeing who was sitting in front of us I knew it would be a long game listening to his constant complaints about the team we’d be cheering.

While we’re only able to go to Miami a couple of times a year, it doesn’t seem likely that we’d end up in the seats behind “This Guy” on more than one occasion, but that’s exactly what happened.

photo 1Of course we recognized him immediately as the guy, the Hurricane “fan”, who grumbles throughout the game criticizing the coach, the game plan, the pitchers, the batters, the umpire, everything about the game. His sarcastic comments can be heard after every play, and nearly after every pitch. It’s hard to believe this season ticket holder finds any pleasure in cheering (if that’s what you call it) for the home team.

It’s true the game started with a 1st inning mental mistake, but not an error, by the third baseman, one that resulted in a run later in the inning, but calling the third baseman names wasn’t necessary.

Shortly after taking our seats it began. Here’s a FEW of the comments made by “this guy” during the course of the game:

  • “What are you doing out there? or Throw strikes. or Come on, (followed by the pitcher’s name)” after every pitch out of the strike zone
  • “How stupid!” when a batter squares around to bunt
  • “Wow” was heard every time a player hit a ball resulting in an out.
  • “Have these people never seen a baseball game before? It’s a simple fly ball.” when fans would begin cheering when a ball sailed into the outfield, only to be caught by a fielder
  • “Oh my God!” when the catcher lost a ball under his feet
  • “The wheels sure fell off fast.” when the team was down by one run
  • “He was safe!” Not in response to a call made by the umpire when a UM batter was called out at first, but when the Cane’s defense made a close play and the opposing team’s player was called out!?!
  • “Great idea, Jim! Why would you do that?” when a runner was thrown out attempting to steal second base
  • “He’s stupid – that’s his style of baseball.” another comment made about Coach Morris
  • “Thanks a lot blue. Get your fat leg out of the way!” as runner advanced to 3rd on a dropped ball by the catcher
  • “We’ve got a .148 hitter up in a game we need to win. I don’t know why Jim leaves him in.”
  • “Coach gets dumber all the time – he won’t allow them to announce the score.” this after Wake Forest defeated Virginia in the 7th inning of the UM game
  • “Hang in there blue – stink to the very end!”
  • “Pick up your sombrero on the way out! Wow!” this after one of the Cuban players on the team struck out
  • “We found a dumber team than we are.” when a UNC runner got caught stealing in the 9th inning

He was even irritated when the Maniac, the University of Miami mascot sat in the seat next to him, asking the Maniac to give him some space. The Maniac obliged and left to visit with fans who appreciated his attention.

photo 3

Now this game was not a blow out! Miami went down 3-0 in the first, but tied the game in the second. The team went down again in the 4th, but again came back and tied the game in the 8th inning. All tied up, the game went into extra innings – 7 extra innings of sarcastic comments – and finally in the 16th inning the Canes won the game. At which point, he turned around and gave John a high five in celebration of the win. Go figure, after 5 hours of sarcasm and grumbling, “this guy” celebrated the win with all those seated around him.

It’s only natural to get aggravated with your team when they make mistakes or lose games, but if they’re your team, either cheer them on or grumble at home. The other fans don’t want to hear your non-stop negative comments.

Please, don’t be “this guy”!



Here are some fans you may want to emulate regardless if you cheer for the Hurricanes, the Knights, or the ‘Noles!





Ketchup Trivia?

Twice in the past week, I’ve noticed a bottle of Heinz Ketchup on the table of a restaurant with the words, Up For a Game? Trivial Pursuit Tomato Ketchup.


The good news, Trivial Pursuit Tomato Ketchup tastes the same as the traditional ketchup sold by Heinz, but it also provides an opportunity for bored diners to play a little Trivial Pursuit while waiting for their food to arrive.

For years, Trivial Pursuit cards have been found on the tables at Cheeburger Cheeburger, and while we frequently flipped through the cards asking one another questions, I must admit the cards were pretty disgusting. After being handled by so many other people with not only ketchup hands, but french fry, onion ring, and hamburger hands, a trip to the restroom to wash up before eating was required.

Image 1

The Heinz Ketchup version of Trivial Pursuit eliminates the gross factor while continuing the fun factor for diners with the ability to use their cell phone to scan the QR code on the back of the bottle. It’s pretty simple. Scan the QR code. Enter an email address (but you can opt out of the Heinz product updates and recipes). Start playing either the Family or Regular edition of Trivial Pursuit. After rolling the die a category’s selected and the questions begin like those below.

Science: Where in the human body would you find bones called phalanges?

Entertainment: What pasta dish is a favorite of Garfield the cat?

Sports & Leisure: What boxer coined the term rope-a-dope, a way to block punches while on the ropes?

History: In 2010, what 26 year old did Time Magazine name “Person of the Year”?

Arts & Literature: Who invented the printing press?

Geography: What does a cartographer do?

Some questions are more challenging, but you get the idea. Compete with your dinner companions in a friendly game of trivia while waiting for your food.


International Table Top Day: No Bored Games Allowed!

How many of these games are collecting dust in your closet? Well, it’s time to dust them off or maybe you need to buy a new game or two in preparation for International Table Top Day.

Never heard of International Table Top Day? Well, it’s a celebration of tabletop gaming with the purpose of spending time together and having fun. Check out this video of last year’s event and look for the comments of Meghan’s friend, Devan.

The first games I remember playing were checkers and Block Head. Later, Yahtzee, The Game of Life, Careers, Clue and Scrabble entertained me. And then card games like Tripoli, Uno, Canasta, Pinocle, and Hearts provided hours of fun.


In recent years, thanks to my son-in-law, Jonathan, we’ve been introduced to a whole new world of games. You may want to try out the new version of Trivial Pursuit: Bet You Know . The one Sarah won recently moves more quickly than the original game since players earn the pie shaped wedges on any correct answer and everyone’s involved in every question because players place wagers on their opponents’ ability to answer each question.

IMG_3288Or maybe you’d prefer to play Steam Park, a board game Jonathan won on a recent visit. In Steam Park players build an amusement park in an effort to attract visitors and earn the most money. (Much better than building houses and hotels in Monopoly…and in only about an hour!)

A good two person game like Hive, a strategy game, or Jaipur, a tactical card game, or 1960: The Making of a President in which players replay the Presidential Election of 1960 may be more up your alley.

IMG_3055So many games. So little time.

Start making plans to join in on the fun of International Table Top Day and don’t forget to Tweet pictures of all the fun!

Image 13And share your favorite games! I’m always in the market for another!