Friday I worked four hours and headed straight to Rome for the Rome Braves bobblehead day: A triple HOF bobble of Cox, Glassine, and Maddux. After slamming down two crummy Wendys chicken sandwiches and filling up at the downtown BP there were still only four ahead of my in line at State Mutual Stadium.
As the line grew the time passed quickly with several fellow bobblehead addicts club members to talk to: Bobby Myers and I completed a trade. I met UGA fan Dan Fox, who had been to the same games I attended in Athens and Chattanooga. Kevin Martin drove his young family over from Birmingham. We talked at length and agreed to make some future Gwinnett for Mississippi trades. Later we discovered that we had chatted last summer in Gwinnett. When it comes to bubbleheads we are both adamant early-birds. Also met the famous Jay Da Kid Shirley.
When we went in we learned the bobblehead was apt to break, so I had to swap two broken bobbles for future unbroken ones. Though minor league ballparks are a great place to wear my orange Nike KD7 basketball shoes, the bright sneakers don't really lend themselves to passing through the gates several times (each time with a different ticket).
The national anthem was sung by a special group who really got a kick from their performance, so much so I broke from my usual decorum to snap a photo. Between games the group got to parade around the field.
I searched the small stadium and tracked down my new friend Johnny Tallant (below), whom I had chatted up Wednesday afternoon in the Turner Field dollar line. After standing out in the hot sun for several hours (and getting a bad sunburn, I later discovered) it was nice to kick back in the shade with Johnny and his older friend. Tallant has a literal museum in his basement in Cumming that has been written up at least twice, including this 2008 article in the Forsyth News. I need to make a pilgrimage.The game went by quickly, with a lot of action - including two triples. Since it was a doubleheader the teams only played seven innings. After the game I went down and introduced myself to usher Bill Kerlin, brother of my Braves batting practice buddy Marshall, the long-time BSU campus minister. Bill and I also had a nice chat.
My ride home was uneventful, save for the two stops for RaceTrac refills to refuel my sun-baked body. Another good haul: $25.00 for parking four tickets, and four bobbleheads. Sold one of the four for $69.00 with hopes to trade the other two (for the limited edition Bob Uecker statue bobble coming out in August and possibly the classic Kent Hrbek/Ron Gant Twins SGA.