Baseball Scruples

Alright, here goes the baseball game story...

I went to a baseball game over the Memorial Day weekend.

There were 4 people sitting directly behind me. 2 couples. We'll call them girl 1, her boyfriend was guy 1, and there was guy 2, and his girlfriend, girl 2.

Girl 1 is the type of person who just talks because she just likes to hear her own voice constantly. I sat in front of her for about 3 hours and, by the end of the game, I knew her whole life story. Mostly she was talking to Guy 2. (In other words, not her own boyfriend.) Every once in a while, her own boyfriend, Guy 1, would add something, but mostly it was Girl 1 talking to Guy 2 the entire time.

Which made me think that maybe they were ex-es. Or, at least, they were probably more-than-friends at some point in their lives. They had a certain easy way of talking that made me suspect that. Also, Girl 1's name was Chelsea, and he started or ended every sentence with "Chels," which seemed just a little too familiar to me.

One of the things that really annoyed me about Girl 1 was that she talked like she was a baseball expert but, really, she had no clue what was going on.

She would say things like, "Wow, that shortstop made a great catch!"
Guy 2 would say, "That wasn't the shortstop, that was the pitcher."
And Girl 1 would say something like, "Well, he's like a shortstop the way he (mumble, mumble, mumble)."

On one of the scoreboards, they showed games at other stadiums, and the pitching match-ups.

Girl 1 said, "Oh, look who's pitching that game, that's my friend's fiance."

No one else really acknowdleged her.

So, she kept going. She kept saying things like, "Oh, this pitcher's having a bad day. I'll have to ask Jen's fiance what's going on with him. I can ask him at the wedding."

Finally, Guy 2 said, "Jen's fiance? Really? I thought they broke up a while ago. Did they get back together?"

To which Girl 1 said, "Oh, I don't know, I haven't talked to Jen in a few months, I guess, but I thought that (mumble, mumble, mumble.)"

I didn't realize how quiet Girl 2 was until her boyfriend got up and went to the bathroom. Then, Girl 1 leaned over and said to her, "So, Guy 2 tells me you just graduated?" Girl 1 said, "Yeah, a few weeks ago." And that's when I realized it was the first time I was hearing Girl 2's voice. I don't know if she just didn't have anything to say or if she couldn't get a word in through all of Girl 1's talking.

Girl 1 said, "That's nice. Do you know what you're going to do yet? Do you have a job yet?" Girl 2 said, "I have a teaching job in the fall, so I'm just kind of taking it easy this summer."

I had turned around and saw Girl 2 a few times, and she looked really nice. She had on a pretty silver sparkly top, a baseball cap and braids, and she was looked just as annoyed by Girl 1's talking as I was. I wondered how she got herself dragged into this, why she couldn't just say to her boyfriend, "Nah, I don't feel like hanging out with your friend that talks too much today," and I thought she looked like she was wondering how she got herself dragged into this too.

Guy 1 seemed pretty nice. Quiet, but I guess he'd have to be, to get along with his talkative girlfriend.

I thought that maybe they'd all be better off if they rematched the couples. But maybe talkative people need to be with quiet partners, the opposites attract theory.

Anyway, here comes the most interesting part. Girl 2, the one I felt sorry for, got up to go the bathroom. And, when she did, Girl 1 said to Guy 2, "I am so sorry for mentioning the $500 thing."

"Er, yeah, I didn't want her to know," Guy 2 said.

(I missed the original mention of "the $500 thing," I must have been successfully tuning her out at that point.)

Girl 1 continued, "Yeah, when I saw that the Kentucky Derby was on, I was just thinking, Guy 2 must be there losing all his money on this race."

Guy 2 said, "Yeah, I went to the derby and I lost $500. But she didn't know that. Her graduation was that weekend, so I told her I was sick so that I didn't have to go."

Girl 1 said, "Ha! Sick of her!"

And they both laughed.

Guy 2 continued, "And then, I didn't even have any money to get her a graduation present or take her out or anything."

Girl 1 laughed and said, "Oh, don't worry about it." Of course she doesn't care if Girl 2 doesn't get a graduation gift!

I spent the final innings wondering if I could somehow pull Girl 2 aside and say something.

I think if it were me, I'd want to know. I don't know if I'd be happier knowing the details of what some stranger overheard, or just a general, "Hey, get rid of him, you can do better."

I bet that she already has her doubts about her relationship, and maybe she just needs an outsider to reinforce it.

I guess when in doubt, it's better to mind your own business. But, as we were leaving the stadium, she was right in front of me, and I was really tempted to tap her on the shoulder and say something...

What would you have done?


  1. Honestly? I wouldn't have said anything.

  2. I woudda wanted to say something, but I probably wouldn't have unless I ran into her and had a genuine opportunity. Anyways, what with our job, we should be used to keeping secrets, right?

  3. I'm always amazed at how women can overhear just about any conversation.

  4. I would not have said a word. If she does not know the difference between a pitcher and a shortstop then...

  5. Same as you.... Say nothing, and worry that I've somehow let this stranger down by not warning her about the a-hole she's with. And feel really badly for her. But also realize that she's very young, and she'll likely figure it out.

  6. Don't worry, Girl 2 will probably end up marrying the schmuck 2...even though deep down she probably knows he's a putz. You did the right thing blogging about it.

  7. Realistically, she probably wouldn't have taken it well coming from you. Finding out that your boyfriend is a sleeze is something you either need to discover yourself or you need your friends to tell you. Some random person from a baseball game telling you is only going to make you defend your boyfriend and concentrate on how great he is as you point out all the nice things he's done for you over the past however-long-you've-been-dating. Or maybe that's just me...

  8. No, wait, it was the OTHER girl who didn't know the difference between a pitcher and a shortstop.

    The girl I wanted to warn just kept quiet. Maybe she was already thinking about how horrible her boyfriend was - and plotting about getting life insurance on him and taking him out. Or, maybe that's just me...

  9. I wouldn't have said anything either, but given an opportune moment (like while you were leaving?) I would have turned to whoever I was with and made a comment about how the guy sitting behind you was such a putz and that he'd blown off his girlfriend's graduation and lied about it.

    Totally passive-aggressive, I know, but that's just the easiest way. If she truly already had doubts, she would recognize who you were talking about, but if she was still all in "love" she would have just figured you were talking about some other putz.

  10. Wow that sounds like a fascinating baseball game. I think I would have gone nuts listening to that girl talk for that long. Kudos to her boyfriend for putting up with it.

    As for girl 2, I am sure she will figure it out eventually.

  11. Step 1: You say to the girl something to initiate a conversation. "That's a cute cap," or "Which way do I turn to get out of here?" or just anything.

    Step 2: Then say something like "Your friends make a cute couple" or something similar to indicate you've mixed up the couples.

    She'll correct your confusion, and you'll act embarrassed and fade into the crowd.

    But the seed will be planted.

  12. Oooh, that's why I like Milbarge... always the most creative idea.

    Next time, that's what I'll do.

    AND, beware of inviting Milbarge to your cocktail parties where there are couples having a hard time getting along...

  13. I think I would have tried to look for a moment that wasn't too awkward to tell her. Or maybe turn around at one point when Girl 2 comes back and say really loud to Girl 1 and Guy 2 when Girl 2 is listening, "Were you talking about the Derby before that happened [whenever]. That sucks that you lost money, it just happened to me to." Then sit back and watch Girl 2 gril Guy 2....

    Btw, I totally agree, I would ALWAYS want to know, even if it would be hard to hear.