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Five Hours in the Chavez Ravine

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Things You Can Do In Five Hours:
-Drive to Las Vegas from Los Angeles
-Run a marathon as fast as P.Diddy
-Watch the uber-long extended version of Return of the King
-Make an entire baby sweater
-Learn a computer programming language

Things You Can't Do In Five Hours:
-Build Rome
-Watch Saturday night's Dodger game from start to finish

That's right, Saturday's game lasted 5-hours and six minutes, the longest game at Chavez Ravine since a five-hour, 16-minute game between the Dodgers and New York Mets nearly two decades ago.

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And I stayed for every ass numbing minute.


Here were the highlights from the stands:

-Matt Kemp had an eventful game, smacking a home run in the first inning and juggling and eventually catching a Matt Holliday drive to the warning track. An umpire first ruled that Kemp hit it off the wall and called Holliday safe, but after a brief umpires meeting, the call was overturned. Rockies manager Clint Hurdle jumped out of the dugout to stomp his feet and argue much to the chagrin of the Dodgers faithful, who all but called for Hurdle to be fed to the lions..or at least to the rowdies in the bleachers.

-I had to half-admire the pluck and wherewithal of a blue wig-wearing teen girl sitting near me who got up and danced furiously to every between inning song that played over the loud speakers. She kept looking around, hoping, praying that the cameras would spot her and display her writhing body on the Jumbotron. It appeared to be hopeless, but finally in the 11th inning, when most people had already left....dancing girl finally got her three seconds of fame.

-The tiny Latino man with the forked tongue sitting near me whistled with a shrill piercing sound and kept banging on his chair almost constantly for the final four innings. Sometimes, I wish they made mute buttons for people.

-I got to participate in the rarest of baseball rituals..the second 7th inning stretch. It was more fun this time because it was almost midnight and much of the remaining crowd sang "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" like it was an Irish drinking song.

-The jumbotron displays a digital clock that reads 12:00. The witching hour is upon us! Apparently, this hurts the Dodgers because a few minutes later, Roberto Hernandez gives up three runs. The Dodgers can't muster a comeback and they lose 7-4. As I suspected, this means that the Colorado Rockies are, in fact, witches.

-If nothing else, getting out of the game at 12:20 a.m. ensures that there's little traffic. And it means eating at The Bright Spot in Echo Park with the post-bar crowd. Good times.

AP Photo by Chris Carlson