This one's for Teh Ladies1:
It's quite nice to wake up in the morning wondering whether or not that really wonderful thing you believe happened , in the still-cloudy recesses of your not-quite-fully-awake brain, actually happened; only to shake off the sleep cobwebs and have your now fully-awake brain tell you, "Yes. You weren't just dreaming that. It did happen. It really did2."
And this morning, even though the Phillies are not having what anyone would call a good season, I awoke wondering, Did that walk-off win in the 10th really happen last night3? I assumed at first that it couldn't have, because by then I was telling myself that they had won an extra innings walk-off a few days before that against the Giants; and then, the next day, had won a walk-off against the Brewers, in which they scored 4 runs in the ninth; and then, the day after that, had scored six runs in the 8th to come back from a 6-1 deficit to beat the Brewers again.
I suspected this couldn't be true: Walk-off against the Giants, followed by walk-off against the Brewers; followed by 6-run 8th against the Brewers; followed by yet another come-from-behind extra-innings walk-off against the Brewers? Four of these in a row? Couldn't be.
Then my brain, which really by this point should have been fully awake but was talking like it was still punch-drunk with sleep, told me: And you were at that game where they scored the six runs in the 8th. Remember? Half the crowd walked out after Lee gave up that last two-run dinger making the score 6-1 Brewers, but you knew Ian would never let you leave till the last out4, so you sat there with Ian and Teh 'Sis-in-Law and turned your cap inside out, saying: "Rally cap time because the Phils are gonna have a rally now!" And you were half-kidding because you didn't think it could really happen.
But it did! And you know how at games where the home team is rallying there's always that one idiot there screaming his head off as though the only reason the team is scoring runs is because of his annoyingly loud voice and obnoxious behavior? Well, on the evening of July 24, 2012, YOU were that idiot! At least, you were that idiot for section 329.
Still don't believe me? my brain continued. Then just say something out loud and believe the croak.
And so I did. I spoke out loud, saying to myself: "Good morning, Glaven!" And there it was - the hoarse croak that betrayed the fact that I had been screaming CHOOOOOOOOOOOOCH!!!! two nights previously when Carlos Ruiz came up to bat in the 8th and hit that bases-clearing three-run double to tie the game; and here I was, two days later, and I still did not have my dulcet baritone pipes back yet. So it must have happened, right? Because I now clearly remembered - this was not just my foggy sleep-brain lying to me - high-fiving Ian and Teh 'S-i-L and, Hell, the dudes standing behind us in section 329 at the game when Pence hit that bloop single to drive in Chooch for the go-ahead (and, eventually, winning) run.
So that means the rest of it probably did, too. That means that last night, the Phils did score two in the 10th to win their 4th in a row in dramatic fashion.
No, the Phils are not having a good year.
But they're still a great team. Still our team.
Win or lose.
But don't lose, Phillies!
1 Because if you bothered to play it, you must've noticed that it starts with both the sight and sound of a great big cock.
So therefore I guess it's also for Cletus.
2 This a.m. uncertainty can work both ways, because sometimes you want your newly-awakened brain to tell you something didn't happen. Example: I quit smoking on February 12, 1989, so that's over 23 years ago. To this day, I still awake, with an alarming regularity, from dreams that I smoked a cigarette. Awake in a panic sometimes, in fact, because these dreams always seem very real to me. Then I come fully awake and can go, Whew! It was only a very realistic-seeming dream. Because I didn't smoke last night. I never crave cigarettes while I'm awake ... it has, after all, been 23 years. But at night, in my sleep, when my guard is down, I crave them, evidently. I have this cigarette dream roughly every 3 or 4 months and probably will continue to have it till the day I die.
3 Astute Reader (or, perhaps: Reader To Whom I Am Giving Too Much Credit For Astuteness (depending on whether or not you know when the Phils played yesterday)! I know you're saying, But didn't the Phils play at 1 in the afternoon yesterday? So what's all this "last night" crap?
Good on ya, Reader! The Phils did indeed play an afternoon game yesterday. But I had promised Ian that I would not follow it on the PC while I was at work; would wait till I got home to watch it with him on our DVR. And I for once kept my word. So yesterday's game, for me and Ian, ended at roughly 8:15 p.m. At which point I tried to call Teh 'Bro to celebrate (because when I tried to High Five Teh 'Bride, she acted as though I were coming at her with the express intent of beating her about the headal and chestal area, because to Teh 'Bride, the correct way to celebrate something is to jump up and down while flipping one's hands about randomly and emitting a high-pitched squeal that sounds like this: EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! (or so I assume from watching her interactions with her other chick friends)), but, the game having been over, for Teh 'Bro and the rest of world, for about 3-and-a-half hours, he and Teh S-i-L were out to dinner when I called. So my celebration cohort was limited to Ian, who cared, and Teh 'Bride, who didn't, which I could tell from her lack of jumps, random flippy hand and high-pitched EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!Is
4 In April of 2011, Doc Halladay had his worst outing of the 2011 season, giving up 7 runs to the Brewers. The Phils, in that game, scored a grand total of zero runs. They ended up losing that game 9-0. Ian and I were there for that game and did not leave until the final out, hoping, if not quite believing, that our Phils were capable of pulling it out in time4a. We were about the only ones left in the park. We stayed through a more than two hour rain delay later that season in a game the Phils played against the Diamondback. An hour into the delay, I was telling Ian, "This rain's not gonna stop. We should leave." "NOOOOOOOOO!" was his consistent answer. The game resumed and we got to move down right behind home for the last few inning because two thirds of the crowd (at least) had left by then. The Phils won.
So we stick it out. On July 24, 2012, the Phils made this starry-eyed belief in their comeback ability worth our while. Ian and I stayed and so did Teh 'Sis-in-Law, who regained some of the credibility she'd lost in Ian's eyes when she attended that game last year that ended up going 19 innings (the Phils won it with position player Wilson Valdez pitching because they'd run out of pitchers!) and left it after the 9th, when the score was still tied!
"We would have stayed till the end, right Dad?"
"Of course we would have, Ian."
4a That's what she said!