On Saturday we met some friends in Prospect Park for a summer picnic, some frisbee throwing, and the eventual ice cream cone nearby. It was a beautiful day for such a gathering, and the park was full of other like-minded souls happily enjoying the lovely weather. As we began to pack up our gear, a voice called. “Andy? Andy SF?”. I looked towards the voice, and not really understanding the “SF” suffix to my name (my last name is not SF!), I mumbled something on the lines of “no, INSERT REAL LAST NAME HERE”, as if someone actually thought my last name was “SF”. Now, YF and I have run this site for almost 8 years, and during the run of conversation here there’s no chance I don’t know what “SF” means. But out in Prospect Park and a little sun-addled, I really didn’t know what was going on.
That is, until I saw the person and he introduced himself as “Nick, Nick from the blog”. Nick (that’s Nick-YF to most of you) had also been lounging about nearby, perhaps no more than 25 feet away. Now Nick, as many of you know, is based in Jakarta. Indonesia. In town for a mere couple of weeks, he had met some friends in Prospect Park at almost exactly the same time we were getting ready to head out from our spot on the grass. Nick had recognized me from Facebook, and that’s all it took. It was a great end to a great Saturday – Nick was in town when Jeter hit his 3000th, and I was in Prospect Park when Nick happened to be visiting the exact same spot, all the way from the South Pacific. Those not from New York should realize that Prospect Park is big. As in 585 acres big. And I rarely go to Prospect Park – this was the second picnic I have been to in 15 years, and my other visits to the Park have typically involved the Zoo or the soccer fields. But on this day it might as well have been the corner barber store (though I would have been getting a shine or a shave, I am the bald guy on the left). It was amazing, after all these years of virtual interaction, to finally stand in the same space, talk baseball, catch up on life, to meet someone with whom I have had a friendship based simply on a shared love for our national pastime. It was a great day, and I am thankful to have met Nick, who is certainly as nice and enjoyable a person as he is in all of his posts.