All She Wrote: Ballpark Frank

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by Nicole Crews

Mother: I still don’t understand why you go to baseball games if you don’t really care about the sport.

Me: The only thing I like about baseball is the pants. And beer.

Mother: The pants used to be good. Now they just look like they’re wearing ill-fitting polyester khakis.

Me: How would you know?

Mother: I do own a television Nicole.

It’s pop-a-cork thirty when the boys flop onto my front porch like flounder on a dock. They’ve been marinating in Hot Springs for two days and getting basted in high-end Homestead-ery up in Vah-ginia. They’re so relaxed I’m wondering if their skin will stick when I peel them off the porch to make it to the ballpark on time.

Gaysball

Me: Tell me again why we are going to a baseball game?

Frank: It’s fun. I think you’ll like it. I still can’t believe you’ve never been to the new stadium.

Brad: It’s really good people-watching. Especially on Thirsty Thursdays.

Me: I’m glad Tony and David invited us. I think I might be able to get into gaysball.

We arrive at NewBridge Bank Park — home of the Greensboro Grasshoppers — and head to the private deck where our friends Tony Doles and David Farris have a gaggle of power gays sandwiched between a quinceñera and an eighth-grade graduation party. Catering troughs bearing orange tiles of American cheese, dead cow, fluffy buns and chopped onion mountains glistening like diamonds delineate our space.

Cafeteria

Me: So this is a lot like Cafeteria in New York.

David: You have no idea how expensive that catering line-up is.

Me: I’m glad you didn’t order it. I’m wearing mother’s high-waisted cut offs from the ’70s – the pre-stretch years.

David: They’re darling.

Me: ‘The Longest Zipper’ should be at least a chapter title. A homage to both mother and Erica Jong.

Me: You guys should have booked for a game in Winston. My cameltoe would go with the Camel City better. Obviously my mother had a longer vaginal torso than I do.

Tony Doles: Ugh, those buffets smell.

Me: Like a foot.

Tony Doles: Between a foot and a wet, plastic ashtray.

As the second beer slides down our gullets we reflect that Walt Whitman would have liked this day because Whitman liked baseball — and men. Frank and Brad regale us with tales of putting the homo in the Homestead, building a swimming pool and, inevitably, talk turns to shrubbery.

Leaves of grass

Todd McCain: You want to stagger the shrubs so that if one dies there’s not a gaping hole.

Frank: We hate gaping holes.

Me: Do you think the ballpark has a gay groundskeeper? He mows on the bias.

Todd: He obviously missed a spot in the children’s section.

Me: Is the children’s section supposed to be in the shape of a vagina? And is sliding down that hill into the brown spot supposed to be a metaphor for childbirth.

Frank: What are those things the moms are all holding? Foam fingers?

Me: Either that are the mom’s are really bold to bring their vibrators out in public.

As we admire the dad bods of the ballplayers and the earbobs of the sisters (“Were those traffic cones,” says Frank) the news that our host David Farris went to high school in Fort Worth, Texas and that he knew Blair from “The Facts of Life” hits us like a fly ball to the noggin.

Blair, b****es and Botox

Me: What was she like?

David: She was a b****.

Me: She never did lose that hate weight did she?

A crackle in the stands interrupts our high-brow talk.

Me: Yikes. I live in fear of getting hit in the face with a baseball. Of course there’s enough Botox in there to stop a steam engine.

Did you know that Shar Peis are often given Botox so that the folds over their eyes arch up so they can see?

Tony: What do poor Shar Peis do?

Me: I guess they can’t watch baseball, so we should count ourselves lucky all around.