Johnny and Ginger Go to Camden

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I had planned to get to Camden early on Sunday, so that I could paint the town red in a day and take part in the ol’ waterfront trifecta. You see, the good people of Camden were letting bloggers go to the Aquarium, the Battleship, and the ballpark for free over the past weekend, and since I wear so many hats (quizmaster, blogger, baker, etc.) I figured I should take part. But I was unable to get out of bed before noon, probably the aftereffects of “Baker’s hangover”. Or possibly the effects of “PBR hangover”. Anyway, that’s irrelevant. I called the lovely Ginger to see if she wanted to go to the city across the river. She said sure, so we hopped in the Crown Victoria and headed to “The City That Never Reads”. Ouch! That was a cheap shot. In my defense, I was raised to make fun of Jersey every chance I got.

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We started at the Adventure Aquarium. Now, as most of you know, I have a little experience with marine animals, having served as a dolphin trainer in Hawaii for a fewyears (please feel free to pass along this little nugget of info to all of your attractive female friends). But I had never been to the Adventure Aquarium. So I was excited, but I also realized that we had to hurry through. The baseball game started at 1:30 (or so I thought), and would be over by 4:30, and the battleship closed at 5, so we had a lot to do in a short amount of time. We rushed through the exhibits, which were visually stunning. I was impressed by several of the brightly colored animals they had there, many of which I had never seen before. But we didn’t have time to learn. We only had time for…Spongebob Squarepants! Yep, the aquarium has a 4-D adventure which is a Spongebob cartoon, and there we received a warm reception from an employee named Karess (see, I told you I’d put you in my blog if you hooked us up!). Now, having existed for the first 31 years of my life on only three dimensions, I was a little worried. Were there things on the fourth dimension my simple mind couldn’t comprehend? Would I…meet God? Alas, no. The 4-D thing was a lot of fun, but I emerged spiritually intact. The movie was a blast, and I only had one minor complaint: The chairs in the 4-D adventure jerked you around throughout the adventure, causing the man next to me to proclaim, dryly, “Wow, the fourth dimension is a lot like driving in Center City.”
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After emerging from our 4-D adventure, we headed outdoors to see the penguins and the seals. There, we snapped a couple of photos and then got moving. There simply wasn’t time to get to know the seals or ask questions. We had to decide whether to go to the Battleship or the ballpark. There was a light rain falling, so we decided to head to the Battleship. By the time we got there it was raining pretty hard.

Now, I didn’t know much about the USS New Jersey, and now was not the time to learn. We still had a baseball game to get to. So we flew through the ship. Ginger would bark, “Slow down, I’m trying to read these placards.” To which I would angrily reply, “We don’t have time to read! Just absorb things visually as you run past them, and then read about the ship online!” I’m pretty sure we set a new record for “fastest self guided ship tour ever”. All in all, though, the ship was pretty cool. The most interesting thing wasn’t the ship’s firepower, but the amount of personal space that each soldier had to himself, which was essentially none. Plus my granddad (the one who taught me at age 8 that drinking straws were “for women”, effectively ending my straw-drinking days) served on board a battleship in the Pacific, so it gave me a better grasp of how he lived.
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Well, it was off to the ballpark, where we saw, uh, seagulls in the parking lot. Yeah, it seems that the game had started at 1:00, not 1:30, as I had assumed, so it was long over by the time we got there. No problem. I had worked for the Sharks a few years ago, so I’ve been to like 75 of their games, and I can tell you this: It is a great place to watch a game. And if you go, ask for seats in section X. That will give you a great skyline view of the city in the background as you watch the game. All in all, it was a great day in Camden. The Aquarium is awesome, and I definitely plan on returning. The battleship was really interesting as well, and will probably be even more so after I do more research on it.

Well, the adventure was essentially over…at least that phase. Tune back in tommorrow, when I discuss my Sunday night trip to legendary Tacconelli’s Pizza. Was it as good as advertised? Better than Tony’s? Find out tommorrow!