The Garden City Telegram
6/22/2013
SOUTHWEST LIFE

Night at the College World Series with your kids: priceless

There are some things you can't put a price on.

Of course, that doesn't go for the people who can put a price on things.

Last week, my kids and I went to the College World Series, which has become a staple of our summer activities.

Last year was the first time in decades I didn't get to go to at least one game, and I wasn't sure if I'd make it this year or not until my son, Alek, said "We should go."

So we did.

Alek, my daughter, Claire, and I made the trek to TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha.

I am still a little amazed that an NCAA championship series is held so close to me. When I lived in Kansas, it was my vacation.

I'll never be able to travel to the college football national championship game or the NCAA basketball title game, but I can watch the best college baseball teams in the nation play.

We didn't have tickets, so we decided to take a leap of faith that either the box office would have some left or we'd run into someone willing to sell theirs.

There is always someone willing to sell tickets. This particular gentleman was from Houston and had two gold teeth. He said he's been traveling to the CWS for years and preferred the old Rosenblatt Stadium to the TD.

It's amazing what you can learn about someone while you're brokering a deal.

He also said that the day's earlier game was not as profitable as he had hoped and that he was worried that the elimination of LSU might further cut into his profits.

I did what I could to make sure he had enough money to make it back to Houston and maybe help him get that third gold tooth.

He sold me three reserved seats that were a little further from first base than he indicated. I guess his thumb was not up to scale.

But they were still good seats, out of the sun and close to the field.

At first, I was a little stunned at the asking price, and even after he lowered the price (must have been the stunned look on my face), it was a lot of money.

I wasn't done overpaying for things. We still had to eat.

Once the deal was done, we headed to the stadium and found our seats, which made me feel a lot better about the gold tooth I just helped buy.

Then it was time to eat.

Did you know that two cheeseburgers, two waters, a basket of chicken strips and fries and a Mountain Dew cost nearly $34?

I do.

But money comes and goes, usually as fast as you can earn it, but spending time at the ballpark with my kids is becoming a rare event.

Claire and Alek are older, off in college, and getting busier all the time.

But for one night, the three of us could sit back and watch baseball and just enjoy being with each other.

The calendar said Father's Day was over, but that night proved it can come at any time.

Patrick Murphy, of Humphrey, Neb., is a former assistant managing editor of The Telegram