Tom Sorensen

Dippin’ Dots, a sad tot: An experience bigger than the game will make me come back

Seeing the Minnesota Twins play in Minneapolis was about more than the game for Tom Sorensen and his granddaughter.
Seeing the Minnesota Twins play in Minneapolis was about more than the game for Tom Sorensen and his granddaughter. AP

I went to my first Major League Baseball game last week in more than a decade. Target Field reminded me of BB&T Ballpark. That’s a compliment. There were seats for the serious fans. There also were plazas for the socially minded and the guardians of bored kids.

Minnesota was down 4-2 and used five home runs to win 9-4. The victory was the Twins’ third straight, and they would go on to win four more without a loss. Yes, Los Angeles Dodgers. They’re coming for you.

The game was great, the stadium was great and the experience was great. In the sixth inning, my granddaughter picked out a miniature baseball helmet full of ice cream dots. Five steps later, before eating even one, she dropped the helmet face down and stood numbly and watched. A woman walking by said, “That’s the saddest thing I’ve ever seen.”

A man I took to be in security saw the helmet on the ground and my granddaughter standing over it. He smiled, summoned her to the concession stand and she was handed another helmet.

When most of us go to a game, we cheer our team and hope to have a good time. But the experience is bigger than the game. If the experience is disappointing, we’re more likely to stay home and watch the game on TV.

I didn’t get the man’s name, but I got the section number in which he worked and sent the Twins an email the next day. They responded.

They made friends. We’ll be back.

Tom Sorensen is a retired Charlotte Observer columnist. Sign up for his newsletter, and follow him on Twitter: @tomsorensen

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