By Marc Campos

Mustard Belt, Foul Ball, Good Read

It's funny. Last night's news had a round-up of Fourth of July activities that were held throughout the country - fireworks displays, parades, concerts, baseball games, and picnics. Oh, did I mention the hot dog eating contest at Coney Island was also covered.

Commentary picked the winner. Takeru Kobayashi of Japan won his sixth straight title, by shoving down 53 dogs in 12 minutes. California's Joey Chestnut made it close by eating 52. Kobayashi gets to hang on to the Mustard Belt, even though the hot dogs that are served during the competition only include bun and wiener - no mustard.

Yesterday was Dollar Hot Dog Day at the yard. Commentary could only handle three during nine innings.

Speaking of the yard, the foul ball I hate to confront is the one that is hit way high and on its way down it kind of dances. Well, on Monday night, I was at the game with One Of My Best Friends. The 'Stros were batting and an Astro hit one of those way high dreaded foul balls. I followed it up and saw that it was coming down straight toward us. Out of the corner of my eye I could see Cubbie right fielder Jacque Jones heading in our direction hoping to catch the ball. Instinctively I pulled off my lid and let the ball land inside of it. It swirled around and zipped out and hit my seat but I was still able to pick it up and give it to One Of My Best Friends - her first foul ball. I was told they replayed my act a couple of times on the tube.

Now how many of you took my advice and read out loud The Declaration of Independence yesterday. It was in yesterday's Chron. Did you notice that about half of the document is about all the wrongs that were being perpetrated on the colonies? It's a good read.

July 5, 2006, 9:00AM

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