The Padres were nice enough to host a Happy Hour last Thursday at Bub's, a local bar near the ballpark. It started off as an idea from MLB.com writer Corey Brock and was quickly hijacked by Padres Chief Marketing Officer Wayne Partello. Amazingly it sprung from a tweet to reality in less than a week.
I was being indecisive but ultimately decided against going in the late afternoon in favor of doing some back rehab exercises outdoors. I figured I'd get home and check Twitter for the postmortem. Earlier in the day I'd checked in with the rest of the GLB staff and everybody else was leaning against going as well for various reasons. Darklighter was under the weather, Jodes was jodesing or something. I can't remember what the others were up to, or their names at the moment.
So I got home and realized it was only 6:45 pm and I'd need to go out to eat. I figured that if I'm going out I should probably stop being such a curmudgeon and just go to Bub's. It'd be best if someone from Gaslamp Ball was in attendance even if I'd be an hour late and just catch the tail end of things. Coincidentally catching the tail end is my specialty.
I parked right between Lolita's and the ballpark and walked briskly over to Bub's. I found the group there just as promised. Upon arriving I sensed that relationships seemed a bit strained. The off-season will do that to you. That feeling didn't last long however as old friendships were renewed over tall glasses of ice cold water. The Happy Hour was already working.
I was told that I'd just missed Dick Enberg who had arrived in a Ron Burgundy style turtleneck and a sport coat. He had had a glass of wine and left by the time I arrived. Pretty cool of him to attend a fan meet-up. I've never thought of him as someone who would socialize with riff-raff like us.
There was a pretty large gathering of Padres employees, all of whom I adore. I may not always agree with the team's decisions but they've got a really good group of people working for them. I enjoy their company. The entire Padres Social Hour crew was there, Bob Scanlan, Wayne, Padres media relations and even some of the events crew. Bernie Wilson and Ben Higgins were there from the media. As far as bloggers go, there was GhostofRAK, Lobshots (who showed up even more fashionably late than me) and to my surprise almost the entire GLB staff (Darklighter, Wonko and Jodes). There were also a dozen or so fans that I'm sure most of you would recognize from their Twitter presence.
It would was just nice to catch up with all these good folks. I for my part apologized for being so cynical and negative as of late. I'm having trouble getting excited about the season for whatever reason. Scan promised to check in on me occasionally to make sure I was ok, which I appreciate.
I spent probably a bit too long whining about the uniforms to Wayne. I made a very emotional plea where I wept openly a few times during my diatribe. I'm probably not the best spokesman for this type of thing. I'm not so eloquent but I'm convinced that returning to brown and gold is absolutely the right thing to do and all other options are wrong. At the end Wayne jokingly told me he appreciated my passion, knowing that I hate that dismissive phrase. Good times. He and some of the crew very generously stayed way past their allotted time. Most of us parted ways at about nine.
Big thanks to all who joined us at @BubsBallpark tonight. I look forward to doing that more often.— Wayne Partello (@WaynePartello) January 23, 2015
I still hadn't eaten and so I ended my night alone at Lolita's reminiscing upon the productive evening and toasted to the open lines of communication between fans and Padres staff.
Only person in Lolita's. Looking out the window at the ballpark. Eating a carne asada burrito and that Cups song plays. Perfection.— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) January 23, 2015