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Chasing The American Dream

April 25, 2006


Photo courtesy of miamiherald.com

It’s hard for me to believe that before last night, I hadn’t ever seen an NBA Playoff game live. Based on last night’s results, I hope it doesn’t take me another 40 years to see another one. Oh sure, the game was exciting, and my home team Miami Heat beat the visiting Chicago Bulls 115-108. Those are obvious reasons for wanting to see another game, but you know me better than that. What makes it exciting for me is the overall experience of actually going to the game and soaking up the sights, sounds, smells (and tastes too for that matter), and the overall feel of 20,000 maniacal strangers all pulling together as one.

You all know my issues with
parking, and for once I caught a break. We have a downtown office about three blocks from the arena so I got to park in the employee lot. As I walked closer to the arena, the parking bandits wanted more and more money. It started at $20; $25, $30, $35, and $40 right next to the arena. Amazing. As I walked, I passed through the gauntlet of ticket scalpers and overheard the usual conversations. “I got two. Center court baby, $300 each.” And people listened. I love listening to that racket. Aaah, and then we have the street vendors grilling up some dogs, sausages/chorizos, burgers, and chicken on a stick. Mmm, that ballpark smell. Gotta love it.

One thing that made the game unique was the ‘dress code.’ This year’s theme was White Hot Heat so everyone was asked to dress in a white shirt. It was truly cool (oxymoron not intended) to see all the Heat fans dressed in a sea of white. They even had the seats covered in white. Maybe that contributed to the “buzz” in the arena, but you could feel the excitement and electricity in the air. I don’t know why low-grade pizza and pop corn taste so good while you’re at a game, but they do. The arena even offered up sushi but I just couldn’t convince myself that this was truly ‘game food.’

The game started and the action on the court was fast, furious, and athletic. But my eyes were also on the crowd. I got a kick at watching kids dance to, “Whoop There It Is” and other arena anthem songs. Really cute. I like talking and commiserating with my neighbors about the game, discussing strategy, and bad officiating. People from all walks of life and all different races. Kinda neat. And kinda interesting because I won’t talk to anyone on an airplane. Go figure.

And isn’t just the coolest thing when you actually can share the experience with someone next to you. And to top it all off, it was her idea to go to the game, not mine. Now THAT’S white hot.


  • I hope she is a special she :)

    And what about the street vendors selling AREPAS? YUM! They are my favorite.

    Glad to hear you had a good time.

    By Blogger catsteevens, at 9:56 PM, April 25, 2006  

  • Ahhh, basketball. I'm so jealous!!

    Glad it was a great experience for you!

    I'm trying to get to Seattle for a Mariners game. And there's talk that the Sonics may leave Seattle if they don't get a new arena.

    By Anonymous ~Kabe, at 1:52 AM, April 26, 2006  

  • Two more things:

    Is it just me, or are your comments all messed up? I can't read them all, there are words overlapping... I miss reading the dialogue.

    And please, I want to hear more about this woman. Sounds like she's smart, funny, interesting, likes sports, more than bits and bytes -- and a grown-up! I like her already.

    *raising a glass to you*

    By Anonymous ~K, at 2:16 AM, April 26, 2006  

  • K, in my best Wicked Witch impression, "All in good time my pretty." Hmm, not sure what the deal is with the comments. I don't seem to have that problem??!!

    Cat, yeah, I left out the arepas. But then again, the non-locals might think 'arepas' was a typo.

    By Blogger Plantation, at 5:56 AM, April 26, 2006  

  • I haven't been to a pro game in any sport except baseball, but I, too, love the atmosphere. I love people watching and talking with folks around you. It's such a unique experience to have that many people cheering for the same team! Glad you had a great time and glad you had someone to share it with!

    By Blogger Amy, at 9:04 AM, April 26, 2006  

  • I just love it when everything falls into place...between not having to pay for parking, the food (personally, I think taking a pass on "stadium sushi" was a good idea), the company, and the game itself, sounds like your night was a 10.

    By Blogger Eatapeach, at 9:56 AM, April 26, 2006  

  • Glad to see you and Janet Sara were able to work it out. ;)

    But the Knicks will always rule over basketball in my book.

    By Blogger olivia, at 7:06 PM, April 26, 2006  

  • Sounds like a great time! You lucky bum!

    By Anonymous Christa, at 4:59 PM, April 27, 2006  

  • Plant -
    I think ~K is correct. I sometimes have problems with your comments section. When I'm at home they come out fine. But if I check your blog from other locations, the comments overlap and get cut off. Sometimes I can only view the first two comments and then nothing. Even if I refresh the page, it still is messed up. I didn't say anything earlier because I wasn't able to get to the Post a Comment link. Just an FYI.

    By Blogger catsteevens, at 11:37 PM, April 27, 2006  

  • Ditto on the "comments" issue. But I have found that if you click on the title of the post (in the column to the right), it resolves the problem.

    By Blogger Eatapeach, at 7:11 AM, April 28, 2006  

  • Oh, Florida....I worked at Disney World for like a month before I regained control of my wits.

    By Blogger olivia, at 4:36 PM, April 29, 2006  

  • so, who's the gal?


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:28 PM, May 01, 2006  

  • Yeah, who's the gal? Let's hear about this mystery woman. She sounds amazing.

    By Blogger Eatapeach, at 8:04 PM, May 01, 2006  

  • Too much fun! I know what you mean, we're pretty psyched about the Suns here in Phoenix. I've been to playoff games before, and the energy is amazing!

    Best to the Miami Heat! May we see each other in the finals!!

    So, who's the gal?

    By Blogger Elizabeth, at 1:03 AM, May 03, 2006  

  • P.S. I took your advice and invited a date to Game 7 of the Suns/Lakers playoffs tonight! Though he's scaring me a little - he keeps sending me photos of the orange jumpsuit he plans on wearing (Suns fans are wearing orange tonight). Should I get involved with a man who could make fabulous blog fodder?

    By Blogger Elizabeth, at 10:46 AM, May 06, 2006  

  • Wow, lucky guy. Orange jumpsuit? Yeah, I'd be worried. Enjoy yourself and go Suns.

    By Blogger Plantation, at 5:03 PM, May 06, 2006  

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