Dallas Does Opening Day

The number one thing I heard from fans prior to Opening Day was that Opening Day in Cincinnati is “unlike anything you’ll ever experience”. I was SO excited for the day. I even woke up before my alarm went off (this only happens of Christmas and practically never)! I regret to inform you that I didn’t experience Opening Day as I probably should have but I’ll tell you how it went down anyway.

My day began at Gameworks where I joined my friend Mo Egger for a fun interview on ESPN 1530. If you have heard me on the radio before, you should know something awesome- I say “um” WAY less frequently when I’m not just calling into the station. The only thing more exciting than wearing a sweet headset for the broadcast was telling Mo that his New Balance tennis shoes were fairy-ish compared to my studded boots. The headset was pretty fun though. Almost as fun as I imagine wearing a Buzz Lightyear costume is. I still don’t know why no one wanted to say “Hi” to me that day but I’ll forgive you. Here’s a picture of Mo and I at Gameworks…

…and here’s a shot of me wearing the “um” extinguisher… Totally Buzz Lightyear-ish and super hero serious, right?

After stopping by Mo’s Opening Day party, I wanted to see the parade so I headed downtown. First stop: O’Malley’s in the alley. The place was crowded (and oh-so-charming), and I couldn’t think of something more awesome than an Irish pub in an alley, so I had to spend a few minutes there and I may or may not have consumed some adult libations and talked to strangers. Have I mentioned how nice and outgoing most Reds fans are?

Moving right along… I found a spot near Fountain Square to catch the parade. And by “I found a spot”, I mean someone ran over my toes with a bicycle and someone else slammed into me with a stroller. Because of this, I tried to find a tree to stand next to in case I was unknowingly wearing my invisible cloak or something. If you know me, you know that my patience for masses of people crowding into a confined space needs work.  Another thing I don’t love is having people constantly run into me when I’m standing still. I made myself stand there for as long as I could possibly bear (not very long). After seeing Mat smiling with a little kiddo, riding in a car with Nick Masset, I decided that I needed to get the h out of there. I’m not complaining, I’m just admitting that I picked my sanity over actually watching the parade. I’m going to need directions to a balcony or state of the art binoculars or something next year (now taking suggestions).

If you’ve ever been to Opening Day and you have AT&T as your cellular provider, you may already know that your cellphone is going to say “No Service” all day. That’s really not fancy when trying to coordinate with family and tickets and life in general. To try and make things easy, I asked my mom to stay in one place so that I could leave some of the tickets I had in my possession at Will Call. When I returned to that spot, I couldn’t find her anywhere. This was ridiculously irritating because the woman had so many rhinestones on her Reds shirt, I was essentially looking for a disco ball. Disco ball, not found. Frustrated, confused, flustered, cell phone-less, I decided I ought to go back to my apartment. Surely she would go there after realizing we had lost each other, right?

I typically don’t take “no” for an answer be it cell phone service or otherwise, so once I got home, I began desperately doing strange yoga poses in hopes to get my phone in a position where it wanted to work. One out of 602 times, a text message actually seemed to go through but, after about 30 minutes, I gave up. It was at that point that I decided I wasn’t even going to go to the game. This was just CRAZY stressful and I hadn’t prepared myself properly. At some point after making that decision, I sent Mat a text message that miraculously made it through letting him know his parents were taken care of but I was staying home because I was feeling overwhelmed. When my mom finally made it back to the apartment, however, Mat called her phone (apparently AT&T plays favorites because she was getting a little service). After concluding that nothing serious was wrong, he asked me to pull it together and get my butt to the ballpark. “It’s Opening Day on our new team!”, he scolded me. It’s baseball season and that means that what Mat wants, he gets…I gathered my brain, had a glass of wine, put some lipstick on and charged on through the masses.

Sometimes in life, you need someone to tell you not to give up. As absolutely lame as this sounds, this was one of those times for me and I am SO glad Mat was able to reach me. In my defense, I have been ridiculously overwhelmed with this move (from San Diego, CA to Goodyear, AZ to Cincinnati, OH) on about 47 levels. As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve never lived outside of California and things are going to take some getting used to. I have no doubt in my mind that I’m going to LOVE this place once I figure it out.

In summary, Opening Day was A BLAST but I didn’t do it right. Next year, I will concoct serious plans to conquer the experience.

What I can say is that the atmosphere in that ballpark was something I had never experienced before. It wasn’t Great American Ballpark itself, and it wasn’t the energy of the players on the field or the excitement every time we scored. It wasn’t the win, the hotdogs or the pretty weather; it was the fans. Reds fans are what make this place so special and I couldn’t ask for a better community to be sharing baseball with.

With that being said, thank you all for being awesome and I can not wait to see what this season will bring us.




You have seen the parade next year we have to get you in the parade
and just wait till October when we win the WORLD SERIES and wait till you see that parade

Well as Reds fan we are happy to have mat and you

Awesome post. Welcome to CIncinnati. And next year consider being a Veggie Gal. You’ll see the parade and community from the inside out.

I am so glad you were able to make it out to the game – I am sure you would have regretted not going. Props to you for weathering the storm and pulling it together for your man. This life never stops testing you, but at the end of the day, being there for him makes it all worth it!

so glad u decided to go to the game. I understand feeling overwhelmed and wanting to the throw in the towel and just watch it on TV but once u get to the ballpark there is just nothing like being there.Cincy has great fans and it’s always fun even if u just people watch. Glad u and Mat r settling in and hopefully everyday it will feel more like “home”.

Sorry we didn’t say hi at gameworks. We figured you were super busy and we didn’t want to bother you on the big day. We have quite a crew, wife, 3 yr old, and a set of 4 month twins so we have to plan every move carefully in big crowds. Welcome to Reds country and we love your tweets!

So sorry that you’ve been overwhelmed lately. I’m not an expert on moving, since I’ve lived in Cincy all of my life, but I’m sure that the entire process is overwhelming, and I’m also sure that it’s hard having to adjust to a new city and a new community.

The Opening Day parade can sure be a lot of fun, but, like you’ve mentioned, you have to be prepared. It’s almost like you have to have a plan a, plan b, and maybe even a plan c. It sounds like you did okay, considering all of the chaos that went on that day. Just know that it’s okay to feel overwhelmed, and it’s okay to go back to your home and gather yourself. Everyone here in Cincy fully supports you and Mat, and we’re all really excited to have you guys here. It’s also really nice to be able to talk to someone who is considered “an insider” when it comes to our Reds. Thank you for willingly putting yourself out here on your blog and on Twitter. I think several fans are just as excited to connect with you, along with supporting Mat as a new member of our team.

Next year, there’s no doubt that you’ll be prepared, and I’m sure that you’ll have a network of friends and family to guide you around the parade, which can definitely help.

Hope all is well with you, Dallas! Take care!

Thank you so much for sharing this. It is really nice to see how crazy it can be for everyone, not just the ball players. I am very happy that you and Mat are a part of the new Reds. I am looking forward to reading your post the day Mat gets a no hitter for the team. 🙂

Welcome to Cincinnati. I hope that you can embrace Cincinnati and its fans. I transplanted here after a 2 year baseball relationship that would go from AA to bigs on what seemed like a daily basis. Lol. I wish y’all the best and can’t wait for for my first reds game of 2012. Yea, sorry was in Vegas for opening day and recovery is taking longer than expected.

Wow! You gave me chills when you gave the fans credit for bringing GABP alive on your first Reds’ opening day. It’s definitely not easy adjusting to a strange place. Cincinnati is truly a great place, I was transplanted here 24 years ago after living numerous places including NY and Utah which are two of the most extreme different places to live. I am glad to have settled here and even happier to raise my three kids here – a place where they were born and can proudly call home. Welcome to Cincinnati Dallas! Thanks for sharing your adventures with us. Have fun in DC and best of luck to Mat in tomorrow’s Nationals’ opening day!!

I’ve been doing the parade for years and I’ve always been overwhelmed. Took me awhile to find the sweet spot. Next year try City Cellars on 9th and Race
The crowd is a lot thinner and the beer is so much better.

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