February 1, 2010

BALLPARKS, LIKE OTHER CATHEDRALS, SHOULD HAVE ORGANS:

Jarvis was part of Shea's fabric: Mets reporter remembers ballpark's organist (Marty Noble, 1/30/10, MLB.com)

The older ballparks had unmistakable aromas, mixtures of stale beer, cigar smoke and cement. The ramps of Yankee Stadium, pre-1974 renovations, had more cigar than the Polo Grounds or Ebbets Field. To me, the Dodgers' home had a unique scent that suggested wood was burning. The Polo Grounds just smelled. But that odious odor was part of the distinction.

Yankee Stadium had the wonderful sound of Bob Sheppard's voice -- "Num-ber fawty-too, Tom Sturd-i-vant." The Polo Grounds sounded hollow. Ebbets Field sounded as if the treble had been turned up and the bass turned down. More distinctions.

Shea Stadium was in its infancy the first time I climbed its ramps. No cigar smell or eau d'Rheingold. Its distinctions were its roundness (noticed most by trips to and from LaGuardia), the rattle of those blue and orange corrugated metal things attached to exterior of the park and the dreadful din of the departing jets.

And Jane Jarvis.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 1, 2010 6:43 AM
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