Tuesday, December 30, 2008

In the arena

Earlier this year I wrote about what University of Dayton Flyers basketball meant to me growing up. That blog entry is probably one of the best pieces I wrote all year, so I'm not going to dare try to repeat it tonight. But what to do when today's quick trip to Dayton and back was to squeeze in my (likely) one game for the season and is the only thing I really have to blog about... Mere reportage?

I picked this match-up because UD was hosting George Mason, a scrappy competitor whose unlikely run in the 2006 NCAA Tournament made them the underdog darlings of the college basketball scene. I figured it would be a good game--it was--and I wasn't sure if my plan to take my dad to the Flyers game at Toledo on Friday, weather permitting, would happen. As I learned via a phone conversation during the drive home, my aunt and uncle are visiting my parents in the coming days, so chances are he can't meet me in northwest Ohio even if the snow and ice hold back. So, it turns out that going to tonight's game was the right decision for more than one reason.

Of course, the fun that comes with going to a tightly contested game attended by a near-sellout crowd of 13,000-plus was reason enough. Since I arrived plenty of time before tip-off, I could quietly marvel at how the arena was spruced up in the last however many years.

It looks quite nice for a building nearing forty years of age, and the exposed, less glamorous parts, like above the concessions area, manage to be invisible. This isn't a sleek, spiffy gym, but it looks plenty sharp and feels cozy like a basketball arena should be rather than like some of the new, slick caverns. The seats look pretty much the same as I remember them, so I'd venture to guess that if they're not the originals, they've been in place for some time. For instance, there are no cupholders. Honestly, I didn't miss them, in part because it gives one more room in the seat or at one's feet.

I enjoyed the game and wish I could see the team in person again on Friday; however, my dad may be doing me a favor in saying he probably can't go. It's been a hectic month and a very busy week. I could use to stay put. Tonight's game was a nice break, but my next break should be parking myself at home. After all, a new year is coming, and next week is sure to bring a flurry of more activity.

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At 10:23 AM, Anonymous LittleWit said...

That sounds like a great game. It's kind of fun to see how things evolve (or don't) once you leave.


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