Sunday, September 30, 2007

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Voice of the Turtle

Tiger Stadium was to be my final resting place. Upon my death, my ashes were to be scattered in left field among the ghosts of Willie Horton, Al Kaline, Norm Cash, Alan Trammel, Daryl Evans and many others.I spent many wonderful afternoons in the ball park with my grampa, my dad, hubby and later my kids and grand kids. I stuck with teams both wonderful and going thru the halls of hell. Until the strike .

I never went back to the ball park when the strike was settled and my dad died the next year. I am still angry over the strike. I also hated how the team was decimated and then sold--altho the new owner finally got a clue and is pouring as much cash into it as his beloved Red Wings. But this beautiful stadium was thrown to the wind. Taxpayers are now forced to pay more inside the city to pay for a new stadium. Unlike the owner of the Pistons (who financed his own new stadium) the Tigers threw away a gem and the poorest of the state pay for it-unless you stay at a hotel, eat at a restaurant or otherwise play within the county. I can count on my one hand how many times I have been inside the city limits since then. I will never go inside the new stadium. All my memories are down the road a bit.

This week it was announced that the stadium is set for demolition even tho several solutions to preserve it have been laid out. The mayor wont listen even to Ernie Harwell -the long time voice of the Tigers. Even he has been thrown to the curb. There are several groups who are hoping to save some of it-Ernie wants to save at least the playing field and some seats for a residential park/historical site

The stadium was renovated several times. The original seats were not stationery like this one. The first time I ever went to a game, it was to a seat like this and the ushers would wipe the dust off for a nickle or dime.

These seats are a bit older-notice the designs under the arm. A set of these would set you back several thousand dollars in BAD condition.

So the auction of the innards of Tiger Stadium have begun. I was able to purchase a set of seats here . This again was another upgrade but it will be all I have-I wanted 3 but they only come in twos. One for me, one for dad and one for grampa. There is also a huge auction of many items listed at this link.I want the marquee sign but can only imagine what I would do with it. It belongs at Greenfield/Henry Ford or the Smithsonian or the Hall of Fame -well it really belongs at the Corner. Michigan and Trumbell. But deaf ears and stupidity are taking it elsewhere.

I have had this sweat shirt now for over 15 years and its getting thin but it keeps me close to the ghosts. I still will be scattered in left field. My field of dreams may have a factory on it, may have a McDonald's someday or may just be an empty lot. But dreams never go away. You can always walk thru them whenever you close your eyes and hear the Voice of the Turtle.

""For, lo, the winter is past, The rain is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; The time of the singing of birds is come, And the voice of the turtle is heard in our land.""