Monday, April 12, 2010

Back when I was a kid,

My dad had preseason tickets to the Cowboys games. He got 'em from a colleague of his at the university, and would take me on the days when neither of us had much to do the next day (it was a long drive for a six-year-old) and his colleague wouldn't be there himself.

The seats were in row TT, for Tippy-Top. You could look down from where we sat and see pigeons flying underneath, through the windows set into the walls of the stadium. And because preseason games are generally in August and heat rises (regardless of how large the hole in your roof is), I remember mostly being extremely hot, uncomfortable, and wondering how the peanuts and Cokes the guys were selling tasted.

The first time I saw Texas Stadium, I was amazed at the size of the thing. It hovered on the horizon like an enormous egg. Dad pointed out that we were still a good five miles away. Then we were a mile away, walking up from our parking space, and I was fascinated by the steel girders you could see on the outside of the building. I had never seen construction like that, being only six, and it was the coolest thing ever.

Those were the days of Too-Tall Jones, Harvey Martin and his grin, and Tom Landry's hat. I have what's probably a false memory of looking waaaaaaaay down through Dad's binoculars, which I never quite got the hang of, and seeing that famous hat. I do recall quite clearly seeing Too-Tall make one of his field-goal blocking leaps, though Dad had the glasses at that point and what I saw was no more than a tiny man downfield who suddenly was much taller than everyone else.

Texas Stadium is officially gone now. The next time I drive to Dallas, I won't have to crane my neck and risk rear-ending the car in front of me in order to catch a glimpse of that inhumanly large hovering egg, though I'll probably do it out of reflex anyhow. I never did get to eat any peanuts or hot-dogs (at least, I don't think I did), but I did get to see Too-Tall's jump.

And maybe Coach Landry's hat. Just maybe.


Brenda said...

That's a great memory.

messymimi said...

My childhood memories are of the old Tulane Stadium, heat, never enough drinks to go around (we had to share), and how wonderful it was to be able to go to the Superdome instead. Air conditioning!

Marjorie said...

Wow. It's gone? Sign of the times, I supposed. I lived in Dallas for 3 years and that was the site of my first Thanksgiving in Texas. I'll always remember it fondly... :)