Thursday, October 30, 2008

I am a happy boy

Okay, so maybe I've been distracted for the past 18 years by the Atlanta Braves, but it's tough when you're a kid and you move south to one of the sorriest baseball cities in America only to have the team turn it completely around the following year and win 14 straight division titles. I never gave up on the Phils, though. You can never really give up on the team that your Dad listened to on that ancient dusty, paint-spattered radio while varnishing Ikea shelves over the sawhorses in the garage or sitting in his threadbare and duct-taped old red recliner on the back porch while the lightning bugs flashed on the other side of the screen. The same lightning bugs you were at that very moment chasing around with a faux-wooden bat that came from Texaco promotional bat night at Veteran's Stadium. I remember being confused and amazed upon hearing a play called on that radio involving a Phillies player in the '80s named Michael Jackson. When you're a kid you just accept some things and I just thought that not only could the guy do the moonwalk, but now he could apparently pitch, too. Some people just get a little more than the rest of us.

I called my grandmother, who watches every Phillies game, last night because that's what you do when your team wins one, you call somebody. She reminded me that I have my grandfather's replica championship ring that they gave out to the fans after their 1980 title. Every sports team's fans have their own version of monumental suck, and it's notable that, until last night, the Phils had been around for 126 years and had earned exactly one championship. Over that span they've lost more games than any other professional sports franchise, a record they will probably always hold.

I only wish I could be in Philadelphia for the celebration. In the city that used to have a jail and a judge on duty in the stadium on football game days and, in two separate incidents, famously booed Santa Claus and threw snow balls at him, you gotta know they can let their emotions swing to the high end with just as much intensity.

And today they're on top.

So tomorrow I can finally put on a clean shirt. I reserve my superstitions for baseball only, and I only have one Phillies tee, so I've been wearing it since Sunday. It obviously worked.

8 comments:

nancypearlwannabe said...

Congrats, Phillies! If the Red Sox didn't win it, I was just happy not to have to hear any cowbells in the Philadelphia stadium.

Courtney said...

Yay Phils! We've got to go to a game at the Vet if we ever make it back to Philadelphia.

I didn't know you had your grandfather's ring. I want to see it when I get home.

Mickey said...

Sorry, Courtney- they tore the Vet down several years ago, and good riddance.

Anonymous said...

be careful where you park your band wagon, you dont want to get a boot on it. then you wouldnt be able to ride it around town and tell people you grew up in philly and even though you lived down here 86% of your life, you never gave up on your team. go you. nice mickey philly by the way, im guessing he rides shot gun on the band wagon.

hightower

Mickey said...

That's just mean, dude.

Aaron said...

Yeah, congrats to the Phils. As NPW said, once Tampa beat the Red Sox, I was a huge Phillies Phan.

The Modern Gal said...

While I openly admitted I was supporting the team formerly known as the Devil Rays, I certainly have no problem with the Phillies winning all. I did take issue with all the sportscasters combining the droughts of all three Philadelphia teams to make it sound like there had been like 100-some-odd years in Philadelphia without any championship. No, there were like 20 something. Sheesh. Sports reporters.

Julie said...

I no longer follow baseball now that dad doesn't turn the tv channel over to TBS.