If you haven’t heard, our bubble has gone away.
It may not be news to anyone outside of Minnesota, but the last home game for the Vikings was the last time anything would take place in the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome.
The build up to the event was a pretty big deal, and the local sports radio station was taking calls all week from listeners wanting to share their Metrodome memories. I am actually pretty neutral about the whole thing; I didn’t hate the Dome, like some people, but I’m not super sad it’s going away either. It served its function, and we have some great memories of going to football and baseball games there. But I’m not emotionally tied to it one way or the other. That said, I do have three specific memories that stand out.
It’s probably pretty predictable that one of my memories would involve roller skating. The concourses on both the second and third floors of the dome have a smooth concrete surface. If memory serves, Mike Ditka is the first one that called it the Rollerdome, but they did open it up to skaters to come and get exercise during the winter. Last year we discovered this wonder and were able to go a few times. Andrea enjoyed it so much, she signed up to do the marathon event that they held in the spring.
Technically, she participated in the half marathon since it was her first time out, but that’s still pretty impressive. Hell, I’ve only ever done a 5K, and even then I thought I was going to die! She completed the race in 45 minutes, placed 30th out of about 65 skaters, and received a cool t-shirt to boot! And bragging rights. Because, hello! Half marathon!
Jason Loses His Wedding Ring
Usually when we went to Twins games, we ended up in the upper deck because that’s where the cheap seats were. One time we were at a game and we were seated in the first row right behind the railing. During a ninth inning rally, we were standing up to cheer. Jason had recently lost some weight and his ring was a little loose. Maybe more than a little, because while he was clapping, it flew off his hand, over the railing, and landed somewhere in the seats below. We tried to see where it landed, and after the game we tried to go down and find it, but it was pretty much a lost cause.
Jason’s Birthday Surprise
One of the cool things you could do at the dome was pay to have a special message posted on the black and white scoreboard. One year we were taking Jason to a game for his birthday, and I thought it would be fun to have the scoreboard lit up for him. I paid the $50 and kept it a surprise.
During said game, one of the pitchers walked one of our batters. In the past when we’d been at games, if the opponent walked a batter, the scoreboard would show a ghost and say “walks will haunt!”
When the batter was walked, Andrea looked around and said, “Where’s the ghost?” Jason replied, “That’s on the black and white scoreboard. That’s up behind us.”
I immediately spun around and looked at him. “It’s WHAT?!?”
“The ghost is only on the white scoreboard, not the Jumbotron. We can’t see it because it’s up behind us in the upper deck.” I must have looked like I was going to cry, because he looked at me and said, “Why? What did you do?” I had to spoil the surprise and tell him we had paid for the birthday greeting. He felt bad that he wouldn’t get to see it, because we would have had to move to the complete other side of the stadium to have it in view, and there wasn’t enough time to make our way over there before the inning when it would appear. Thankfully, they did send us a picture of said scoreboard after the game, but it wasn’t the same.
We have lots of other memories, like the roof collapse a couple of years ago:
The year we went tailgating when it was -30º and some idiot girl was wandering around with a painted on latex jersey. My friend George actually said, “I’ll bet if I smack her chest right now, those nips would just shatter. Like glass, baby. Pshew!” But these are the ones that stand out. Farewell, you lovely pillow on the Minneapolis skyline. It was fun while it lasted.