It's been very long since I updated this blog at the end of last year. I've been quite busy, and my both work and private schedule are deeply affected by the political football in the central government. This is inevitable for public sector consultants in this time of a year in Japan. lol
Anyhow, this week has been fairly peaceful, and I went to watch a baseball game last night. It was a friendly charity match between Japan and Taiwan for the earthquake victims. Despite my addiction to baseball back in Seattle, it was my first game ever to go watch in Japan!
For being charity game, the players obviously don't play hard to avoid injury risk. So, the game itself was not so great, but I found lots of uniqueness in a ballpark in Japan. Some of them could be just individual differences between Tokyo Dome and Safeco Field in Seattle, so correct me if wrong.
First and foremost, all the food vendors were pretty girls, unlike a bunch of old dudes selling pricey stuff in the US. It was quite amazing to see these pretty girls carrying such a heavy basket of drinks, and they serve as they sit on their knees not to block the view. It must be quite painful, but they kept smiling for the whole time. I think this is an effective sales tactics, and although I am not a drinker and never bought a beer from a vendor in American ballparks, it made me feel like buying one!
Second, the ballpark was structurally very different, for having turf instead of grass in an enclosed dome. Ok, this is not a country or cultural difference, but many of the Japanese ballparks have this structure, so let me not this. Although I hadn't had a good impression on a dome stadium, I actually liked it because it is not only weatherproof but also comfort the crowd. The drawback is of course that the structure and turf are a sort of eyesore. But to be honest, I went to watch so many games at Safeco Field which I had to wear jacket even on a summer night, so it was comforting to be in a dome.
Now the bad part of a ballpark in Japan. Overall, the food and beverage are reasonably priced, but the food was horrible. This was totally odd to me because meals are generally much better in Japan. The ballparks also didn't have a good efforts on entertainment. There was no music to tell people the status of the game, no entry song for batters, no little games like the "Hat Trick" in Safeco Field, and no singing like "Take Out to the Ball Game." The game went on basically very quietly, with occasional cheers, claps, and sighs. Maybe because it was a charity game, but I think the ballpark can do better in entertaining people. I will go watch another game at the end of March, a Mariners game against Oakland A's (Yes, it is a MLB game in Japan), but I will try to go watch a regular baseball game in Japan to see if I can be a fan of it.
The next update shouldn't be too far!