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About 13 years ago, My business partner and I went over to Barcelona, Spain to look at a new scanning technology. We were thinking about becoming their North American distributor. Very cool place...The architecture was very cool, the Tapas we ate was very good, and in general just a fantastic place to visit.
 

During the visit, the owner of the company took us out one night to Barcelona Stadium to watch a soccer game. The cool part of this was that Lionel Messi, probably the greatest soccer player of that time, and maybe GOAT, was playing in his home town team stadium. The owner intentionally rode with us on the subway over to the stadium. That night they were playing Germany, and it was apparently an important game and tensions were a little high. There was a group of young Germans on the subway, singing a German song out loud that had the same tune of “Oh Susannah”. They were belting it out at about 75% max volume. The locals were just kind of grinning and rolling there eyes. I’ve since found out that the British hooligans were the worst of all the soccer fans for causing trouble. 
 

We got dropped off near the stadium and we all walked about the last 300 yards. There were probably 10 police paddy wagons sitting in front of the stadium as we walked by, ready for action. There was a definite sense of excitement in the air as we walked up to the “Nosebleed” seats. They announced that there were 100,000 people in attendance.

Words can’t describe the noise level when Messi was dribbling the ball around the opposing players. Personally, I’ve never been to sporting event that crazy, but in Europe, I guess this is the status quo. Quite an experience! So I guess there is one thing I can say....

There are not many people in the USA who can say they saw Messi play live in Barcelona stadium!!! For that I’m grateful!

"Honor is a man's gift to himself" Rob Roy McGregor

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About 13 years ago, My business partner and I went over to Barcelona, Spain to look at a new scanning technology. We were thinking about becoming their North American distributor. Very cool place...Th

Guess I could fill a page with memories from my Dad being a professional baseball player. Never was famous as the knuckleball he threw according to catchers like Tim McCarver and Bob Uecker was very d

After 14 days my mother in law left Saturday.  😁

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Several years ago on a stop over in London I tried to get tickets to a Premier League game and there were none to be found, without paying way too much money. Found tickets for a Championship team, Millwall Lions FC.  While trying to get directions to the stadium someone said are you sure you want to go there and the other guy said they will be OK but don't wear that camera outside your jacket. Our tickets were at will call and while standing in line several young guys came walking up with blood on there face and clothes. Once we got to our seats the other people around us made us feel welcome and wondered why we came from the US to South London to see the Lions. They screamed and cussed at their own players and no drinking was allowed in the stands. We noticed that a small section, end zone seats, had a 8 foot fence with razor wire around the top. I ask what this area was for, thinking maybe for prisoners or something, and was told it was where the visiting teams fan sat. About 10 minutes before the end of the match I noticed 4 large buses pull up and police officers started getting off. As we walked out they were everywhere and ended up breaking up several fights. Sure glad we bought a team jersey to wear and no one thought we were from the other side. It was a memory I won't forget.

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Some of my greatest sports memories came with the time to spend with my Dad. 

We were at the Pine tar bat game between the Yankees and the Royals. We watched George Brett knock a couple of fast balls into the foul side of the pole into the third tier bleaches before straightening one out which lead to the scuffle around home plate. I have never seen a bat disappear so quickly.

We were in Shea stadium for a couple of last games between the Jets and our Steelers team. It was the last game that the Jets ever played in that Stadium. Also it was the last game that Terry Bradshaw ever played. At the end of the game the mounted police surrounded the goal posts. The fans began to tear up the sod from the Jets logo at the 50 yd line and threw the clods at the police. They quickly left the post and the fans tore down the goal posts. They also tore up the stands and most everything else. I remember seeing a 40+ yr old man with his young son arguing with the security about wanting to the keep the seat that he had in this hands.

We once saw the Steelers and Chiefs play in Arrowhead on Thanksgiving weekend. Brutally cold. We had seats in the the nose bleed section and a couple from a season ticket holder that I worked with that were 7 rows up from the Steeler sideline. We would switch seats each quarter to let everyone get down close to the action.

Football Polamalu sideline.JPG

Football Aufderheides at Pitt_KC game.JPG

The most memorable game was the biggest one so far, Superbowl XLIII between the Steelers and Cardinals. Greatest sporting event that we have ever been to thus far. With my dad's passing, I don't ever see the repeat of that even with my own kids unfortunately. Hopefully my wife and I are able to make those lasting memories with our kids and now grandkids.

Football Brian and Dad at Game.jpg

Football Lombardi Lift 2009 Champs.jpg

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My dad was not a sports fan, but my aunt, who was a widow and childless and who raised me almost as much as my mom did, was a big sports fan.  She would take me to St. Louis sporting events, which was a big deal in the early 1960s when we lived 60 miles away.  The first one I remember seeing was the NBA St. Louis Hawks against the Cincinnati Royals...Bob Pettit and Clyde Lovellet for the Hawks against Oscar Robertson and Jack Twyman for the Royals.  We were in the nosebleed section and I could barely see the players, partly because back then I was already near-sighted but had never been to an eye doctor, but I remember that game.  Twyman was a specialist from deep, and had a very high-arcing shot, and I remember him hitting several long bombs.  Pettit was a beast with a deadly short jump shot.  I think the Royals won.

Aunt Evelyn also took me to several Cardinals games, but she was more of a basketball fan than a baseball one.  My most (almost) memorable Cardinal game, though, was one where I went with one of my childhood friends and his family.  Stan Musial was sitting on 2,999 hits, and we had the chance of seeing him hit his 3,000th...but he went hitless.

She was probably the main person that turned me on to basketball.  An athletic woman herself, she had a deadly set shot, and would play with me on the goal my dad set up in the driveway, teaching me to dribble and shoot.  She never missed one of my Little League games (my mom and dad seldom watched me play).  I remember one life lesson she taught me...we had a good team and usually won, and one game we won because the pitcher on the opposing team walked in the winning run.  The kid was crying as he walked off the field, and I told Aunt Evelyn, "Look at that sissy crying."  She said, "Don't be like that.  You haven't ever failed at anything yet."  I thought, well, I'm not a pitcher so that'll never happen to me, but I said, "well, if I ever fail I won't bawl like that kid."

A few games later, I came up to the plate, bottom of the last inning, two outs, bases loaded, we're one run behind.  I worked the count to 3 and 2...and struck out swinging at a ball that was about eye level.  The other guys on the team were screaming, "Why did you swing?  It was too high!"  I walked off the field and toward my aunt, crying my eyes out.

All she said was, "See?"

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My first time at a Major League Baseball game was at Crosley field in Cincinnati.  I was around 10 years old at the time, a baseball fan, used to listen to the Reds games on my transistor radio (remember those?), and just seeing the size of the stadium, the crowd, the lights (it was a night game), it was quite an experience for a 10 year old.

I went down the the railing by the Reds dugout, joined the other 30 or so kids there yelling for autographs, I got Johnny Bench and I think it was Gary Nolan's autographs on the game program.  Kept that program for years, but unfortunately they were in pencil and they faded away to nothing.

We were living in Dayton Ohio at the time and coincidentally that was when the Dayton Flyers made it to the finals in the NCAA tourney only to be crushed by UCLA where Lew Alcindor was playing at the time.  Used to listen to those games on my radio too.  

Another Dayton sports memory is sitting cross legged in front of the black and white TV and watching Bart Starr sneak in for the TD in the "Ice Bowl".

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10 hours ago, Johnsfolly said:

We were at the Pine tar bat game between the Yankees and the Royals. We watched George Brett knock a couple of fast balls into the foul side of the pole into the third tier bleaches before straightening one out which lead to the scuffle around home plate. I have never seen a bat disappear so quickly.

That made me curious as to what happened to that bat, and I found out it now resides in Cooperstown.  Ever been there?  I haven't and I plan to go there one of these days.

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12 minutes ago, Quillback said:

That made me curious as to what happened to that bat, and I found out it now resides in Cooperstown.  Ever been there?  I haven't and I plan to go there one of these days.

I haven't been there nor NFL HOF. One trip we looked at going to NFL HOF but ended up in Cleveland at Rock HOF instead.

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24 minutes ago, Johnsfolly said:

I haven't been there nor NFL HOF. One trip we looked at going to NFL HOF but ended up in Cleveland at Rock HOF instead.

I have been to the Rock HOF myself, was stuck there for a weekend on a business trip,  can't say I was enthused by the Rock HOF.  

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