The Day Daddy Didn't Go To Work
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The Day Daddy Didn't Go To Work

My father has a special connection with David Ortiz

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The Day Daddy Didn't Go To Work
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There’s nothing like spending time with your family.

When you’re as close-knitted as my clan, everybody comes together to celebrate even the smallest victories.

And even the most unexpected victories.

When I was seven years old, my summer days consisted of watching
" SpongeBob SquarePants," swimming in my pool or playing with my cousins Mimi and Robbie.

The truth was, we spent so much time together that I thought of them more as siblings than relatives.

Anyway, one day they came over for a small cookout, after we had our barbeque and rode our bikes around the neighborhood, we got ourselves one sweet surprise: Mimi and Robbie were going to spend the night!

My brother, who was four at the time, was just as excited as I was. But as was his nature at the time, he had to ask the most important question: “Why?”

“Tomorrow,” My mother told him, “Auntie and Uncle are going to get a beagle for Mimi and Robbie. We need them here with us because children aren’t allowed at the breeder’s house.”

(Translation: their hands will be full enough as it is with a new dog, they shouldn’t have to put up with two kids as well.)

It was all settled. We spent half the night watching "Jurassic Park" and "Space Jam" and fell asleep in our basement, A.K.A the rec room.

We woke up the next morning to a big breakfast, and the four of us decided to play hide-and-seek when we were finished.

“Where’s Dad?” My brother asked me.

“He’s at work,” I told him. “He’ll be back later.”

After three rounds of hide-and-seek and one dramatic game of house (I think I was the mother), Mimi and Robbie asked if we’d like to watch the Red Sox game on T.V.

I was about to say no, but then I remembered that they were my guest and I had to be fair.

So, I said yes.

I never cared much for baseball, and I still don’t. Don’t get me wrong, I love the Red Sox, but there’s only so many innings of a game that I can watch before falling asleep.

But if I watched just one Red Sox games in my whole life, I’m glad I chose that one when I was seven years old.

As my brother and I savored our Capri Suns, Robbie and Mimi started to cheer when David Ortiz came up to plate.

Not only was he our favorite player, he had the same last name as our grandparents. Obviously, they are not related to David, but a lot of people asked them anyways.

Ortiz the ballplayer made two strikes at first, but then, when all hoped seemed lost, he hit a home run, and the baseball went straight into the stands.

Someone wearing a red shirt and sunglasses caught the ball.

“No way!” Said Robbie.

“Yeah, that was cool!” I chimed in.

“No, Jackie, I think your Dad caught that ball!”

“What?!”

Mimi seized the remote and rewound the game to the moment where the ball came to the crowd. Then she paused.

“It’s Uncle Steve!” She cheered. “Auntie Niecie, come here!”

My mother came into the living room and looked at the T.V. Shocked, she did a double take and laughed.

“Jesus Christ, I’m gonna kill him,” She said under her breath.

Her reaction confirmed it: My Dad wasn’t in the office today. He was at a Red Sox game, holding a baseball hit by David Ortiz, with a look of triumph on his face.

“We’re famous!” I told my brother.

That afternoon, my cousins and my brother and I waited patiently on the front steps of my house. I don’t know what we were more excited for: My Auntie and Uncle bringing home a new dog, or my father bringing home a baseball!

My Aunt and Uncle arrived first with a baby beagle, running across the grass. Her name would be Ruby, and my cousins couldn’t have been happier.

We all played with Ruby for a while until my dad’s Saturn pulled in the driveway. We could hardly wait to hear what he had to tell us.

He got out of the car with that same look of triumph on his face, but a cocked eyebrow from my mother told him he had some explaining to do.

“I finished early and a friend asked me if I wanted to go to a Red Sox game,” He pulled out the ball. “I’m assuming you know the rest.”

We all laughed and my parents kissed. He showed each of us the ball, which felt heavy and smelled like newsprint.

It was one of the most exciting days of my life, and I have the VHS tape to prove it.

The baseball is currently resting atop my father’s bureau, and as David Ortiz enters retirement, I look at the baseball and can’t help but remember how Big Papi made my father’s day off one to remember.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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