First SP78 Photo – Game #563 – 6/23/92

The very first photo taken of an SP78 Replay game, on June 23rd, 1992…nearly 12 years after I started my season. My friend Steve P and I had taken a trip to San Luis Obispo, a small college town on the central coast of California, and I’d brought the game along in case we had a chance to play. The teams I’d chosen to bring were the Reds and Padres, and the game was a May 26th contest won by the Reds in 11 innings, a nighttime match-up played on a small table in our room at the Motel 6 in SLO.

It was the only SP78 game played during our trip, and this was the only photo taken of the game. What’s strange is, Steve didn’t take part in the festivities, either as an opposing manager or as a spectator; you can’t tell from the photo, but he’s fast asleep in the other bed, to the right of the camera frame; I have no idea why he chose not to play.

And that annoying white triangle on the left side of the photo? That’s the edge of the television, where my camera was perched, high up on an adjacent wall. In the days before digital cameras and their small viewscreens, I had to trust what I saw through the viewfinder; thus, I ended up with a photo that wasn’t quite as unobstructed as I’d hoped. And since I was shooting with film, I didn’t have the option to take thousands of photos on a media card, so I only took this one shot, and hoped the image would come out okay.

Now, I have a digital camera and a cell phone for my SP78 picture-taking needs, but back in 1992, it was an Olympus camera with Fuji film that was responsible for the photo above, capturing me in my 29-year-old prime, leading my favorite team to victory while wearing a Cubs cap and enjoying an ice-cold can of vending machine Pepsi.

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