Anyone who knows me, knows I'm quite the conversationalist.
I don't consider myself a talker — while some wish I had a mute button — just someone who enjoys the subtlety of conversation.
But believe me when I say I am at a loss of words after meeting Randy Maris, Roger Maris' son, at the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame inductions last week. There is nothing I can really say to justify meeting the son of my hero. I'm still in slight shock as I sit here writing.
It was going to happen. I certainly wasn't going to drive all the way down to Springfield and not at the very least shake his hand. However, it turned out to be better than I expected. Meeting Randy Maris, was memorable and the time I got to spend chatting with him will be something I will never, ever forget.
I arrived early to get settled in, get my camera set up, check out the facility. It was clear I couldn't wait to meet Randy Maris, I was going on and on how Roger is my hero and how getting the chance to meet his son was going to be quite the honor.
Leaving the media room, off to my right, there he was coming in through the glass lobby doors. It was a quick glance, but I just kept on walking. I didn't want to run up to the man like a '50s teenager seeing Elvis Presley on the street.
I took a couple pictures of the banquet hall to see how pictures looked with and without flash and headed back to that same media room where the press conference was going to be held. Just as I was coming in, one of the Hall of Fame coordinator was coming out.
"Dominic, Maris is here," he said
I let out a huge breath and made my way in.
The man chuckled, however, I felt jolt of energy pass through me. Like a brief strike of lightning. My nerves have never done that to me before.
Within a matter a seconds standing before me was a blue-eyed, middle aged man with a friendly face.
He extended his hand.
"Hi, I'm Randy Maris."
"Hello, I'm Dominic Genetti. It's such a honor to meet you."
From there on we just talked baseball, his dad — of course.
Randy Maris is such a nice man. He's very kind, cordial and has one of the most welcoming personalities you'll ever encounter.
I can't find the words to really describe what it was like to stand there and chat with him. It didn't really hit me till I left Springfield everything actually happened. The shock of unbelieveability and amazement certainly took its time, and a little bit of it hasn't worn off.
Page 2 of 2 - I met my hero's son and I couldn't be prouder.