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March 30, 1998
"Jen from Wichita... I mean SAN MATEO"

As every Giants fan knows, the home opener is April 7 against the Houston Astros. Game time, 1:05pm. I have been lucky to have been at a lot of home openers during my life time. I have gotten to see openers from Little League, to college, to the minors and the majors. I try to attend at least three openers every season. However, this season, I think will be the most memorable than all of them put together.

To most of you, this is going to sound redundant, it might even be boring to read it again for the millionth time, but to those of you who don't know me that well, haven't talked to me in Room 18 over the past month, this home opener will be my first at the 'Stick. For those of you who don't know me, also let me tell you, this first game of the year for our boys at home, will be my first time ever seeing the Giants live. For those of you thinking, this game is just another baseball game to me, you are sadly mistaken, I am so excited about this one.

I can't think of a better way to open my baseball season than at Candlestick Park. I really can't. I mean, how much more could I ask for? I get to see my Giants, live, for the first time. It will be at the home opener. It will be at the 'Stick, right off the Bay, a place where I have so many memories, and I haven't even been there, yet.

Can any of you remember your first ballgame? Can you remember your first opener? The ceremony before the game, how grand it seemed. The players, even though its just a "baseball game", how much more excitement they seemed to have with each pitch thrown, each ball hit, and every play that was made. The smells of the concessions, how that special scent fills the air, every game, but on Opening Day, how that smell was always a bit better than usual. Finally, watching the fans with all their excitement, how they cheered for the boys, how they were all bright eyed. Those feelings, I get every opener, and no matter if my team wins or loses, how I always go home with a smile on my face, because of that beauty, that I have struggled so long in the long, gray winter months, has finally entered back into my life.

I love this game, I love this team, and I love this city. I can't wait for this day to finally arrive. I really can't. Every time I think of it, I get so giddy. I am like a kid, going to their first ballgame. I am, and in many ways, this will be my first. But, isn't that why the fans keep coming back to the yard, season after season, day after day, to feel like that kid that was lost inside them so long ago?