A Miller Park Quest

The drive from Pittsburgh to Miller Park, through Lake Geneva, is about 600 miles. Keep that in mind.

It was my birthday, 2001. Miller Park was in its first year. I didn’t know much about it, except that it looked really cool, and a tragic accident during construction had claimed the lives of 3 workers. With the Cubs making the short drive up I-94 for a series with the Brewers, it seemed like a perfect time to go check it out. I hit the Brewers’ website and bought the only 2 tickets together I could find for the Friday night game.

I left Pittsburgh early in the morning, picked up my sister in Lake Geneva, and headed to Milwaukee. We easily found the ball park (it kinda stands out) and followed traffic to the parking lot. I thought it would be cool to check into Miller Park on FourSquare for the first time, but realizing it hadn’t been created yet, I grabbed the envelope of tickets from the glove box, got our Cubs stuff from the trunk, and headed inside. Upon reaching our gate, I reached into my back pocket for the tickets, and found…lint. Nothing. My sister saw the look on my face and told me to quit screwing around. (I’ve been known to dabble in misleading other humans through deceptive facial expressions, apparently.) No joke, I had to tell her. Our 2 tickets, to this sold-out baseball game, were not in my possession. I backtracked to the car. Nada. I was heartbroken. 600 miles. No tickets.

Meanwhile, Jane had gone to the lost and found. Good luck, I had told her. A sell out crowd, a newly established rivalry, maybe we can get the envelope back? When she inquired at the window, she was told, very matter-of-factly, “Yeah, someone turned tickets in. There’s a name on the envelope, we’ll just need to see his ID”. Seriously. No, seriously?

The first thing I did upon my return home was send a letter to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, thanking their anonymous citizens for saving my day.I still can’t believe someone did that; maybe I just don’t know Milwaukee well enough. We watched that game, from the second-to-last row behind home plate, through the decency of that person. I could not have thanked them enough. The Cubs extended their winning streak to 12 games, and all was right with the world.

I would return to Miller Park for the Sunday game of that series, only to watch the winning streak end when Sammy flied out to the wall in the right field corner. It was a great baseball weekend, a great visit with my sister, and a timely reminder that we can all get along when we do things for people that we would want done for us. Consider that the next time you find yourself in one of those “I know I should probably do the right thing” situations.

Bonus Coverage: I spent Sunday night in Chicago, my frist ever overnight visit downtown, and hit the Michigan Avenue stores Monday morning. I think I got a couple shirts at NikeTown. And this cool picture. Thanks, Toni.


5 thoughts on “A Miller Park Quest

  1. I remember running over to the popsicle truck in the bottom of the 42nd but can’t remember if I made it back to bat again. It was grape.

  2. Just curious(since we are considering times gone by), I wonder if we left any ghost runners in Elgin? I think I left someone on second.

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