Crowds Waving Rally Towels at Camden Yards in Downtown Baltimore

Monday was all read, write, teach, read, grade, get cavities filled, and write, but then it was time to put on my Orioles shirt, stuff a few layers in my purse, tie it all together with my reflective safety belt, and take the bike down to meet C. and friends for food before Game 2 of the ALDS against the Yankees. I was early, as is my penchant, but the streets were already crawling with gray, white, and orange, a few pinstripes thrown in because the Evil Empire’s reach is long. I walked my bike through the crowd before locking up to one of the few Convention Center area bike racks–can we get on this, please? I am always surprised by how many folks choose to drive and park or wait for the light rail (though that is an awesome option) when biking to the stadium is so easy. Maybe the folks going to the game don’t live in the city… Anyway. I choked down some food and beer and followed the streams into the stadium where I was greeted with a 45 minute rain delay that didn’t matter, since that’s how long it took to take a trip around the stadium. Oh, crowds! There were over 48,000 people all dressed in almost-matching uniforms waving the same white towels, standing up at every two-strike count on a Yankee batter, all chanting Let’s Go O’s! in unison and singing the same songs after runs scored or great plays were made. Aside from the steady undercurrent of aggression between fans who wanted to sit and fans who wanted to stand it was good cheer made better by winning. We all stayed for the last out, coming just after midnight, and the ride home was easy peasy on a bicycle, zipping past all the folks hailing cabs, waiting for packed trains, or walking the mile or two back to their cars. We were all on the same team, yes, but there’s still room at the end for this bicyclist to feel just a little bit smug.

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