Results tagged ‘ Chicago ’

Brandon Phillips: Coolest Guy Ever (Part II)

When he’s not busy making jaw-dropping plays like this one, Brandon Phillips spends his free time being the most awesome dude on Earth. The Rockin’ Redlegs crew were fortunate enough to spend this past weekend with Brandon in Chicago. You can read Part I here or learn how it all happened here.

SATURDAY

When we awoke on Saturday morning, we still couldn’t believe where we were, what we were doing, or what events had transpired in the past 24 hours. We had seen the Redlegs win in one of the most historic baseball stadiums in the United States. We spent the evening eating and joking around with the All-Star, Gold Glove Second Baseman of the Cincinnati Reds. We interacted with players we once only dreamed of spotting at the grocery store. We were Brandon Phillips’ entourage, and that was only the first day. We began Saturday anew with tons of excitement running through our systems, speculating what kind of amazing experiences were in store for the rest of the weekend. We quickly got dressed and hopped on the train for Wrigley Field. It was cold, wet, and rainy, but the weather couldn’t dampen our spirits! When we got to the ballpark, we took our seats next to Joey Votto’s family, and watched the Redlegs unfortunately fall to the Cubs, but hey, it happens.

When the team returned to the hotel, we met up with Brandon who expressed his excitement to take us out to eat again. He made reservations for somewhere, but he wouldn’t tell us where he was taking us. We all went upstairs and freshened up and took off for our dinner at a mystery location. We arrived at the restaurant, called Japonais, which was easily the nicest restaurant any of us youngsters have ever been to. Conde Nast Traveler named Japonais one of the top 66 restaurants in the world, and it definitely deserves the distinction. Japonais was incredibly swank and we were definitely underdressed, but Brandon made us feel completely at ease and comfortable. We spent dinner eating some of the most astonishing culinary creations any of us have ever laid eyes on, but even though the restaurant was very upscale, we still joked around and acted crazy like we have been all weekend. Brandon took off his shirt to show us his tattoos, giving us a glance at The Chain. Brandon is one of the most humble people we’ve ever met, so it was no surprise that he concealed his all-diamond chain with a diamond-encrusted #4 Phillips jersey, but we almost died when he let us wear it.

One of our spectacular dishes at Japonais. You cook the meat on the rock!

Angie wearing The Chain.
After dinner, we took a Hummer limo to Walgreens (Brandon had to get some more milk) and then back to the hotel. We clowned around in the limo, with Brandon insulting my lack of skills at picking appropriate music for a Hummer limo ride. When we got back to the hotel, we spent some more tine in the lobby, singing and dancing. Mikey taught Brandon how to “Move Like Bernie” and we tried to convince him to make “Movin’ Like Bernie” one of his at-bat songs. Eventually, we parted ways – Brandon went up to his room so that Dusty didn’t have to come down to the lobby “in his drawers” to yell at all the players for them to get in bed. We went to the bar in the hotel, where we spotted Coco Cordero drinking his troubles away after his blown save. We actually went and hung out with Coco, who is a super cool guy and did not seem to be in terrible spirits after his pitching lost the game. He’s super nice and even showed us videos of his little son playing baseball. It was very cute and very fun. We drank with Coco until last call, when we all went up to bed, exhausted from such a fun day.
Clowns in the limo.
The RR girls in the hotel bar with Coco Cordero.
SUNDAY
On Sunday, we all packed up our things and knew that our fabulous weekend would soon be coming to a close. We met Brandon in the lobby before he left for the game, who told us to meet him after the game so we could all say goodbye. We went to Wrigley for the last time, becoming old pros at the Train-Will Call-Field Box routine. It was cold, but sunny, and we watched the Reds grab a 2-0 shutout victory in Johnny Cueto’s 2011 pitching debut. With sadness, we met Brandon after the game and said our thank yous and goodbyes, not wanting to believe that it was over. We expressed to Brandon that we’d like to host him at our house for dinner sometime and he joked, saying that he would come if Dad was cooking, but not if Mom was. We hugged him goodbye and, just like that, Brandon was on the bus to the airport and our weekend was over.
It was one of the coolest experiences any of us has ever had and the memories that we made with Brandon and the Reds will be with us forever. Brandon is truly a one-of-a-kind person and a class act and we are very lucky to have gotten to know him over this past weekend. Thanks to Brandon Phillips for giving the Rockin’ Redlegs crew and family something to remember forever. Oh, and GO REDS!

Brandon Phillips: Coolest Guy Ever (Part I)

The Rockin’ Redlegs crew returned last night from a three-day road trip in Chicago, Illinois as the guest of Brandon Phillips. It was truly an amazing weekend, and here’s how it all went down.

FRIDAY

We arrived in Chicago around 10 a.m. and checked into the hotel, which was the Westin across from the John Hancock building. We went up to our room and got showered and ready to head to Wrigley Field, during which time Brandon called to make sure that we needed five tickets to the game. We were all very excited to get out and see Chicago and we became even more enthusiastic after Brandon called because it meant that it was even more real. We arrived at Wrigley Field around 11:30 and it was unlike anything we had ever seen. This would be everyone’s first trip to Wrigley and we were excited to get inside the park and check everything out. I went to the Team Will Call window and our tickets weren’t there yet! The guy told us to come back in about 20 minutes, so we went to a bar near Wrigley that welcomed Reds fan. We had a drink to calm our nerves, and when we returned to the ballpark, our tickets were waiting so we went right inside.

The RR crew at the Reds bar by Wrigley.

Me and Pops getting our tickets at Team Will Call.

The famous Wrigley Field sign.

When we entered the ballpark, we realized just how awesome our seats were. We were in the Field Box seats right behind home  plate where we watched the Redlegs grab a 5-4 win from the Cubs thanks to a 3-run homer by Jay Bruce and some incredible plays by our wonderful host. We drank Chicago’s own Old Style beer and sat snugly behind Nick Masset’s family and in front of Drew Stubbs’ family.

The view from our seats.

Our host getting ready for the game!

When the game was over, we hopped on the subway to head back to the hotel. Brandon called while we were on the subway and asked us what we wanted to eat. I said what I thought would be the most easily accepted meal choice for everyone, which was Italian, and he made reservations for us. We got up to the hotel room and everyone was showering and getting dressed when Brandon called again. He wanted us to come down to the lobby and meet all of his teammates, but everyone was in various stages of undress, so we missed that chance. He told us to meet him in the lobby at 7, so once we were all dressed (around 6:45) we headed down to the lobby and waited to meet Brandon. He came downstairs looking so totally fly, we stumbled through introductions, and hopped in a cab to Viaggio’s. During the cab ride, Brandon expressed his disappointment in me for not selecting Japanese food for our meal and I stated that I was not a fan of Japanese. When we got to the restaurant, the owners and workers at the restaurant all wanted to meet Brandon, and, as White Sox fans, bought him and us a drink because the Reds beat the Cubs. During dinner, we ate, took pictures, tweeted, told stories, and joked around. Brandon learned a lot about us, and we learned a lot about him and his teammates. After dinner, we sat there talking for a while until Brandon expressed his excitement to go to Walgreen’s to buy milk. The six of us hopped in a four-seat cab and took a very cramped ride to the nearest Walgreen’s. Once we got to Walgreen’s, we ended up acting crazy, clowning around in every aisle. Brandon got his milk drink and terrorized Walgreen’s customers, and we were off to the hotel again.

Me and Brandon “mad” at each other at dinner.

The whole gang at Viaggio’s.

Brandon and his milk at Walgreen’s.

Back at the hotel, we all hung out in the lobby, goofing off and taking advantage of free internet. We met some of Brandon’s teammates and goofed around, doing dances and singing Brandon’s “Money Money Yeah Yeah” song. Mikey got a picture with his favorite, Jonny Gomes, and Brandon and I got into a pillow fight. Let me tell you, it’s not easy trying to have a pillow fight with a Major League Baseball player – I lost.

Mikey and Jonny Gomes, otherwise known as the coolest picture ever.

Read Part II here!

A Dream Come True

Yesterday, I received the best news of my life. I (Tina) won Brandon Phillips’ Twitter contest. The prize? A trip to Chicago to see the Reds play the Cubs at Wrigley Field from May 6-8. So how’d it happen? Let me tell you.

I was in the kitchen pouring  some milk into a Cincinnati Reds glass, when Angie shouted from the other room to name some desserts. I didn’t really pay much attention until our mom and our brother, Mike, asked why she was so eager to have a list of desserts. She said that Brandon Phillips had tweeted his question for his contest, which was “What is my favorite dessert?” Being a big follower of @DatDudeBP, I knew that he was having his contest that night, but I didn’t think I would be able to ever guess what his favorite dessert might be, so I didn’t think much about it. However, I logged onto Twitter, went back about a month in his tweets, and scanned for any possible clues. I saw that someone had tweeted about giving him his favorite, Krispy Kreme donuts, so I tweeted him my guess, hoping it might be correct. I second-guessed myself, thinking that he probably considers those to be a breakfast food, but there I sat on Twitter, waiting for him to announce a winner. He tweeted that he had a winner, along with this photo:

But, he still hadn’t tweeted who the winner was! We sat there waiting for him to tweet the name of the winner, but I was having a difficult time loading Twitter. Then, I heard Angie gasp, saying “Tina! You won!” I was finally able to see the tweets, and found this: “Congrats to @thetinacis for winning the contest! Hope you have a great time in Chitown with me and the Reds! #ALLREADY” I flipped out. I was so excited. Then, I got a direct message from him congratulating me. I replied, thanking him and asking him for details. His response, “What’s your number so I can call?” I responded with my phone number, and about a minute later, I was on the phone with Brandon Phillips. And let me tell you, hearing his voice on the phone is about a million times better than hearing it on TV. We were on the phone for five minutes, talking about how everything was going to go down in Chicago. He told me that he was going to put me up in the same hotel the Reds are staying in, that he would leave tickets for me for each game, and that I could bring as many people as I wanted, so of course, I told him I was going to be bringing my family. He then said that he would be in touch further through Twitter, but basically all we had to do was to show up at the hotel and he would take care of the rest.

This is going to be an amazing opportunity, a fantastic time, great material for Rockin’ Redlegs, and best of all, one of the greatest experiences of my life. Thanks so much to #4, Brandon Phillips. Now, I just have to think about what we’re going to talk about when we’re out to dinner. Any suggestions?

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,047 other followers