The baseball field, Turgenev once wrote, is a sacred bonding ground for fathers and sons. And what's bonding if it's not daring your son to sprint across the infield of a minor league ballpark? Visiting him in juvi, maybe.
That's where a 14-year-old boy from Fort Mill, S.C. spent his weekend, which started so innocently and pleasurably — so patriotically — at a Charlotte Knights game, of all places. The stadium was packed with fans awaiting fireworks and clutching their newly-acquired beach bags when the teenager's father, as many do, decided to live vicariously through his offspring.
He acknowledged joking with his son about what it would be like to run onto the field. The family was sitting behind home plate, about 10 rows up.
"I said, ‘Boy, if you do, you'd be the man,'" Richards said. "It wasn't like we went to the rail and helped him over or anything."
So the boy became the man, ever the chip off the old block. He jumped the dugout, scampered shirtless across the infield all the way to the wall in center field, where he jumped and slapped the 400-foot sign. (Act like a juvenile delinquent today!)
Not that there's anything wrong with that — except, you know, everything. The boy and his old man were arrested, and the latter was released on bond the next day. The kid will remain in juvenile detention — wasn't he now a man? — for trespassing until the next Family Court, when he will continue to do exactly as advised.
Teen jailed for sprint across diamond [Charlotte Observer]