Thursday, September 11, 2014

Baseball game

Generally I don't go to sporting events but going to a baseball game in Japan is all about crowd watching.  Hiroshima have a professional team called the Hiroshima Carp (pronounced car-pooh, which cracked me up all night).  They are one of the most fun teams to go see because they have a special chant and clap for each player that they sing every time the go up to bat and several chants that happen at other times throughout the game.  I'm going to try and insert video for the first time.  Fingers crossed.

The excitement of the crowd made baseball so much more interesting that it is in the states.  There is a section that is called "performance seating" it is up high and contains several trumpet players, drummers, people with large flags and it is the section of the crowd in which everyone knows the chant and the motions that go with it.  There is even a crowd director that conducts the crowd the same way that someone would conduct an orchestra.
Every one has these mini plastic bats that the clap together for noise and also use as part of the chanting.  Most people also wore team jerseys and colors.  Jeff and I had on red shirts so we felt like we fit in a little better.

The best part is in the 7th inning everyone blows up these huge red (slightly phallic looking) balloons.  Some people sitting near Jeff and I gave us balloons so we were not left out.  The balloons have a special plastic nozzle on the end where you blow them up that makes it easier to blow up and I think it helps them fly better. There is then a song and you wave your balloon back and forth and then you let the balloons go.

You can see the total enthusiasm that the crowd participated in the song.

It was a surprisingly short game, it was only about 2.5 hours long.  The carp won the game 4 to 3 and everyone left happy.

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