The Dirty Hot Dog Man
Fenway Park is one of those mythic places in baseball, a place I dreamed of going since I was a little girl prostrated on the floor of the den watching baseball games with my Dad. He and I watched baseball. And, we played baseball. And, we talked baseball non-stop during the season. Reaching this bastion of baseball-dom was a fantasy come true for this baseball fan.
I landed in my seat in Fenway – all twelve inches of my cheapie in center field – and found I couldn’t have my ‘ode to my Dad’ moment. No overjoyed tears or unmitigated glee at finally reaching a milestone I craved since I was seven.
Blame it on the Dirty Hot Dog Man.
The Dirty Hot Dog Man did not show me his weenie. Oh no. He kept walking up and down our aisle trying to sell hot dogs out of a heated case he carried on his head. At first, I was impressed by the stadium vendors who carried everything on their heads: Cokes and waters and even individual portions of New England clam chowder.
Then, the Dirty Hot Dog Man showed up, and I vowed to never eat again in a public stadium setting. In one hand, he carried a wad of cash. You know, paper money? That thing that scientists say is filthy-dirty?
He used the other hand to whip out a bun and insert a hot dog, making a big deal of keeping the dirty wad of cashola away from the food. When somebody paid him, though, he used both hands to flip through all the cash and give change, rendering all his careful assembly pointless. I mean, if he sold 500 hot dogs, think about how many times he touched that polluted fistful of cash.
Dirty Hot Dog Man, you cured me of my desire to ever consume another hot dog at a ball game. Anywhere. Ever. Though, I must confess, if my Dad had been there, he would’ve had two.
Too Much is Just Enough: Washing Your Freaking Hands