This post-Louisville entry centers on one particular moment of my visit, and explains why I missed the first four minutes of the game on Saturday.
I took my fancy camera to the ‘Ville. I got a few decent pictures with it, but each time we made a pit stop, I questioned whether I should leave it with the truck or keep lugging it around.
It became problematic when we toured the Louisville Slugger factory and museum. Photography is not allowed when you’re inside the factory. We joined our tour group late and as we were catching up, we passed a guy who was shamelessly snapping pics of everything with his phone. The tour guide said, “Please, sir, in the back, photography is not allowed inside the factory.” Everyone looked to the back of the group, saw me with my camera hanging around my neck, and assumed the guide was talking to me. When he had to repeat himself three times I started getting some pointed looks. But homeboy was now taking videos with his phone. I put my camera back in the bag to make sure folks knew I was a rule-follower.
Later in the day, I took some good-natured ribbing from some friends.
“What’s the deal with the real camera?” one asked.
“I’m getting old and needed a hobby, and it’s cheaper than a sports car.”
That seemed to work.
Anyway, perhaps you see where this is headed.
To enter the KFC Yum! Center, you have to walk through metal detectors and have your bags searched. A security person looked at my bag and informed me that cameras of that size/type were not allowed inside. I was about one beer short of saying “Are you fucking kidding me?” to her face. Instead I said “Are you serious?” She had zero sympathy for my plight. In fact, she seemed annoyed that a guest to her town wouldn’t be fully versed in all the rules of the venue.
So, with about five minutes to tip off, I pushed my way back out through the crowd waiting to get in and ran 10 blocks to throw the camera in my vehicle, then ran back to the arena. It was warm, I was wearing jeans and a jacket, and I was both pissed and nervous about the game. I was sweating quite a bit by the time I got back and gained entry. I was also wearing boots, not the ideal footwear for making a jaunt through city streets. I still have blisters and shinsplints.
In retrospect, I probably should have checked the rules on what you’re allowed to take in before we left the truck for the last time. I know some other stadiums don’t allow certain kinds of cameras in, but I wasn’t even thinking about that at the time.
And, yes, I did consider trying a different door, or not telling them there was a camera in my bag. But I also figured that would just delay the inevitable and I should get to my truck and back as quickly as possible.
I finally walked in just as the game hit the first TV timeout. Then I went to the wrong side of my section and had to wait until the second TV timeout to work my way around to my seat. It was a terrible start to the game. And, obviously, I am to blame for KU’s loss because of my struggles.
Feel free to file this under Stupid Things Happen To Stupid People.