Seven for Seven

October 27, 2008

Yes, today may be the day that the Phils finally blow the tinfoil hats off the silly curse promoters. But before we revel in the potential fulfillment of our sports dreams, the weekend just past deserves some celebration all its own.

I started out this weekend hoping for a nearly impossible run–seven for seven from my favorite teams. And this is how it went:

  • After just enough of a break to let Flyers fans get home, Penn State beat Ohio State in the Horseshoe in Columbus for the first time in 30 years, keeping hopes of a championship run alive.
  • Overlapping the PSU game by only a little, because of the rain, the Phils won an exciting game 3 of the World Series over the Tampa Bay Rays, setting off fireworks at 1:47am.
  • Sunday started with a stunning Liverpool win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, where Chelsea hadn’t lost in 86 matches. This moved the Reds into first place in the Premiership and legitimizes their league championship hopes. I realize this doesn’t fit an amazing Philadelphia sports weekend. But you’ll note this is MY amazing sports weekend. Sadly, the game was not even available PPV. So of all the events of the weekend, I didn’t get to see this one.
  • Then the Eagles beat Atlanta making it hard for Eagles tailgaters to follow instructions and leave immediately after the game, so the parking lots would be ready for Phillies fans.

If you’re anything like me, you are exhausted and happy and looking forward to losing your mind tonight. It couldn’t happen to a more fiercely loyal, frustratingly pessimistic fanbase. None of that curse stuff today. None of the woe is me stuff. No complaining about perceived weaknesses. This is the day to take down the walls around your heart and let it beat for the Phillies. Love them right to a historic victory. Enjoy the ride!


Last Minute Tickets a Bargain

October 9, 2008

Even when I still had Phillies Season Tickets, the purchase of post-season seats included minor annoyances. I’ll never understand charging season ticket holders a fee for buying their season tickets, or for buying post-season tickets. Incorporate the cost of doing business in the ticket, for heaven’s sake.

But now that I have not even a Six-Pack plan, I had decided that the post-season was out of reach. I’d seen the ticket prices on Stub Hub and knew I couldn’t afford to go.

Today, I was jonesing big time for tickets for tonight’s game between the Phillies and the Dodgers. A post season without me? I couldn’t imagine it. But I went to Stub Hub again, to remind myself that the tickets were beyond me. What did I see but a set of three tickets behind the plate in the Hall of Fame Club at an unbelievably low price. I called the agency, asked them if the seller would consider selling a single (leaving them with a very easy-to-sell pair). They called the seller. He said yes. And I’m going to the Phillies game tonight. Read the rest of this entry »

Phix the Phils

September 18, 2005

It was announced this week that former Channel 6 WPVI sportscaster Scott Palmer had been brought on board by the Phillies to help the organization with its image. After giving Mr. Palmer a few days to settle in, I can’t help but offer some observations from the cheap seats.

The Phillies current woes don’t start with the years and years of losing. The Phils had lost for years before the ’93 team. And in that year of blue snow, the team was lovingly, whole-heartedly embraced. No, the Phillies image problems are rooted in three main issues–the Bowa regime, a failure of the corporate communications process within the Phillies organization at all levels, and a structural change in the home crowd created by the design of the seating and pricing at the new ballbark. Read the rest of this entry »

Fire Larry

October 3, 2004

Would another manager, a fiery, relaxed guy, who could actually manage the National League game and manage a bullpen, have been able to save the Phillies season?

  Read the rest of this entry »

Game 6

October 14, 2003

You’ll read a lot today about fans and foul balls and interference. You’ll read about pressure and performance. You’ll read about curses and goats and black cats. But none of those things are behind the crushing loss the Chicago Cubs suffered last night at the hands of the Florida Marlins.


The real reason the Cubs lost is karma–simple, unadulterated, never-over-til-it’s-over karma. The Cubs downfall for 2003 began not with a goat and a curse in 1945 or with a black cat or with a fan interfering with what would have been the second out of the eighth inning. No. It all began with one Bernie Mac and the premature celebration. Read the rest of this entry »

Freedom of Speech

April 13, 2003

The other day, after hearing that the Baseball Hall of Fame had cancelled the anniversary celebration for Bull Durham, a movie about baseball and hyperhormonal humans of both genders, I wrote the following email to Hall President Dale Petroskey. Mr. Petroskey had determined that Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins, two of the films stars who planned to attend the celebration, had, by their vocal opposition to war in Iraq, endangered the troops. He decided that the Hall couldn’t risk the possibility that Sarandon and Robbins might use the weekend to speak out.“I am appalled at your knee jerk cancellation of the Bull Durham celebration. Although I do not always agree with the opinions of those who live very public lives, I am always offended when those in positions of economic or political power attempt to bully them into silence. Your use of the Hall of Fame as an instrument of your own political beliefs is completely unacceptable and smells, no STINKS of the bitter odor of McCarthyism. You should be ashamed Mr. Petroskey. And the Hall of Fame should have the courage to act immediately to remove you from an office in which you apparently cannot serve without using it as a platform for your own personal political agenda. Lifelong baseball fan and proud aunt of an airman serving in the Iraq TOO “ 

A Charmed Day

March 27, 2003

I have a charm bracelet of sports memories. Each charm is an unforgettable moment I’ve witnessed first hand. There are silver charms–trips to different ballparks and arenas, near no-hitters, milestone hits, regular season games that lasted long into the morning (one of which ended with an inside the park home run long after last call). But the gold charms, they are the supposedly once-in-a-lifetime moments–a cycle, a triple play, a nearly perfect no-hitter.

All of these are on my bracelet. Each is a gift. And today, I added a 24k charm.

Read the rest of this entry »

For Me in 2003

December 31, 2002

If the world were organized for my happiness, these things will happen in 2003. Read the rest of this entry »


November 7, 2000

I’ve been moved to read more and more about cocaine addiction by the continuing trials and tribulations of Darryl Strawberry. I’m having a hard time finding a recidivism rate. The more I look, the more it seems likely that the rate is around 100%. The drug agencies don’t want to advertise this, because they want addicts to try to get off. But the attempt is apparently the success. Strawberry’s aftercare folks aren’t lying when they say, “We expect this.” They do. And they expect it over and over. The point seems to be not that they try to prevent relapse, but that they control the depth of the relapse and the speed of return to attempted recovery.

I guess I’m coming to the conclusion that blaming an addict for relapse is like blaming a cancer survivor for a return of their disease.  Read the rest of this entry »