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America’s Pasttime

“Vince, it’s a beautiful day for America’s Pastime here at Money Bank Ballpark, and we have two teams struggling to stay above .500, dealing with the decimation of their respective rosters.”

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This photo doesn’t have anything to do with the story. We were at a game and took a few shots…I mean, photos.

“That’s right, Robin, a beautiful day. Of course, flags are flying at half-mast, this time for the recent shootings in Seattle, Albuquerque, Waltham, Haverford, and Kansas City.”

“That would be the Kansas City in Kansas, not Missouri.”

“Correct as always, Vince. Kansas City, Missouri was last spring if memory serves.”

“Right, and a particularly difficult time that was for the country.”

“But we move on, and on we move.”

“OK, the lineups have been handed in, and the boys choir of Carterdale is out to sing the anthem. And symbolically, there is a single gap in the first row of singers for the boy who was tragically  and senselessly gunned down while he walked to school yesterday morning, just a few blocks from the stadium.”

“Very moving scene here on the field. A reminder, the national anthem is brought to you by Hartford Ammunition and Arms Supply Company of Hartford, Connecticut.”

“And, Vince, the hometown Whackadoos have a couple of new faces – recent callups – as they take the field. In left, Jimmy Marksman, who hit an impressive .330 in single A ball, and at first, Walt Pellet, who was the player to be named later in the Snark deal.

“Robin, on the mound, we see the return of Randy Cartridge, the fireballer who last saw action at the end of last year before going on injured reserve.”

“Yeah, he’s got a dangerous sidearm delivery – no pun intended – and it’ll be interesting to see what his command will be like and if he has that famous temper of his under control.

“First batter he’ll face for the visiting Comanchos is Frank Glick, the shortstop.”

“All right. Here’s the pitch, and it’s high and tight and Glick doesn’t like it. He takes a step toward the mound, but changes his mind.”

“Yeah, good idea on his part. Cartridge is packing and he’s really quick on the draw. You don’t want to challenge him.”

“And Glick isn’t carrying, though he’s quite the shot. To me, that’s a real head scratcher.”

“You know, a growing handful of players don’t arm themselves  while batting saying that the gun and holster interfere with the swing. Anyway, no need for him to pack heat. First base coach Tommy Flintlock has him well-covered.”

“I’ll say, that’s looks like a semi-automatic rifle of some kind from here…and it’s trained right on Cartridge. Don’t think that isn’t in the back of the pitcher’s mind as he rears back and fires a pitch. Oh no! He’s plunked Glick right on the knee and Glick is hot. He’s tossed his bat and he’s running out to the mound. Cartridge has drawn his pistol though and you can see the laser dot aimed right at the Comancho logo on Glick’s kevlar lined batting helmet.”

“Even with the laser sighting, You wouldn’t want to make a mistake here and hit your own catcher.”

“No one  wants a repeat of what happened in Milwaukee !”

“Whoa! Someone’s taken a shot and it isn’t the pitcher. Is it Flintlock?”

“No, the first base coach throws up his arms and shrugs as if to say, ‘not me.‘ Everyone’s looking around and, Cartridge has gone down. The pitcher’s been hit, but who’s taken the shot?”

“Well, this is an open carry stadium. Could be a fan…judging by the bloodstain blooming on the downed pitcher’s back, it looks like it came from the Whackadoo bullpen, which is in the outfield behind the right field wall.”

“Now that doesn’t make any sense. Why would one of his own teammates shoot him? The Whacks are desperately short on pitchers and they really needed to get innings out of Cartridge.”

“All right. The trainers are out on the field now, covered by a security detail…”

“And I have to say those guys at Trank security do a marvelous job!”

“That they do, Vince. Indeed. OK, they’re taking Cartridge off the field and as soon as we know what’s going on, we’ll report back to you.”

“We’re going to break for commercial while the Whacks warm up a new pitcher. This pitching change brought to you by Guns on Wheels, dedicated to keeping elderly and shut-in Americans locked and loaded. An armed America is a safe America. Not affiliated with Meals on Wheels.

“–All right, folks, we’re back. Trank Security has the Whackadoo bullpen surrounded. Though a few shots have been fired, it’s been quiet for the last minute.”

“Vince, for folks in the stands listening to the game… As you know stadium policy limits gun sales to the third through sixth innings, but the Whacks have announced that sales will start in the bottom of the first as a safety precaution.”

“And there is a special on now, for every HappyTime gun and clip you buy, you get a free 24-ounce Schlitzerman Beer.”

“Now that’s convenience.”

“It sure is, Vince. It sure is. Nothing goes better together than HappyTime and Schlitzerman, the best gun/beer combo you’ll find at any ballpark.”

“Oh, Robin, the fans have started doing the wave and chanting, ‘drone strike, drone strike!'”

“And here they come Vince, a pair of quad copters with automatics mounted and the Jumbotron is showing the drones eye view. They’re swooping down now on the bullpen, and folks are scattering.”

“Robin, just listen to this crowd – they’re going nuts. It gives you goosebumps. This has been one heck of a first inning and we haven’t even had the first out. It promises to be one heck of a game.”

“Reminder, this drone strike brought to you by our friends at SkyBullets.com, meeting all your personal aerial defense needs. Remember, with a drone, you’re never alone.”