The record and the bet
It was nearly six years ago, in a bar in the Mission district of San Francisco. I was having a drink with friends and we were talking about baseball - home runs, in fact. It felt like just about anyone could put one over the fence - Sosa, McGuire, and Bonds were competing for single-season records and someone even suggested that Hank Aaron’s all-time mark could fall.
Mike Monteiro, one of the founders of Mule Design, was there that night. “Bonds will do it,” he said. “I have no doubt in my mind.”
“Bonds?” I said. “You’ve got to be kidding. He’s old, injured, and taking so much junk - he won’t even last the next season.”
“You have no faith.”
“You’re blinded by hero worship.”
And on it went. Eventually, we found ourselves at an impasse. And, as guys do when they argue about sports, we decided to make it interesting.
“Alright. A hundred dollars says he does it,” Mike said.
“Don’t be so minor league. Five hundred,” I countered.
“Oh yeah? Loser buys a luxury box at a game.”
I paused. Clearly, this wasn’t about money. It was about pride. I had to go after his. “We have to make this count. This has to be something really meaningful.”
“What do you have in mind?” he asked.
“Loser wears a dress to a game.”
We shook hands.
Last night, Bonds put one into the centerfield bleachers. There were fireworks, speeches, and tributes. My IM client popped up a few minutes later with a message from Mike:
See you at the game…
I am a man of my word. Later this season, I will uphold my end of the wager. There is already talk of reserving the centerfield bleachers and getting a little something up on the Jumbotron. I’m considering my wardrobe; elegant and tasteful while still fun and flattering. Your suggestions would be most appreciated in the comments.
My only consolation? I’ll be a 6’6” guy with a goatee wearing a dress in San Francisco. Nobody will blink an eye…