I feel lucky in a lot of areas. I feel lucky that I met Kim and I feel lucky to have such a great family. I feel lucky that Ma Dukes is the strongest Ma Dukes there is and I feel lucky that I was able to drive my Blazer for as long as I could without it bursting into flames. I feel lucky to be healthy, to not be shorter than I am, to not be bald or balding and I feel lucky I have a car that gets good gas mileage.
But this morning, what I feel most lucky about is that thankfully, I am not an Eagles fan.
Upon moving to Philly a little over five years ago, I took to the Phillies largely because of my love of baseball, tied to my love of getting enthusiastic about things and finally coupled with my desire to care about something I’d be watching nearly every night from April to October. It turns out that my timing was pretty good as the Phillies current rise to prominence coincided nearly perfectly with my relocation to Philly.
Of course that made Friday night especially painful as Future Wife and I sat at an Irish bar in our neighborhood, watching the once-Fightin’ Phils loses 1-0 to the Cardinals. It was a hard game to watch and tough to see a team with so much potential go down so easily. If they had shown a little fight and maybe at some point during the game, had even scratched at the idea of coming close to scoring a run, it would have made the loss a little easier to take. But nope, the Phillies just went out- not with a bang and frankly, not even a whimper. Saying that they went out with a whimper would be giving them too much credit. For the last three to four innings of the game, no one in the bar was saying very much except for “Yes, I’ll have another,” whenever the overworked barkeep came around. Man, I thought, if only the Phillies were working as hard as the bartenders in Philly were, things would be different.
When the game ended and all that we saw was Ryan “Anti-Clutch” Howard hobbling down the line before crumpling up in a heap, the bar was silent. I looked around and people were doing one of two things- staring blankly with their mouths dropped open or shaking their head and mumbling a few inaudible curse words. In regards to feeling lucky, I was at that moment, lucky to be a Red Sox fan. It had prepared me for moments like this.
That was Friday night. Saturday was the hangover and if it hadn’t been sunny and seventy degrees and had it be rainy, windy and from a weather perspective, just overwhelmingly depressing, the city wouldn’t have made it to Sunday. The big news in the city was Occupy Philly, followed by the big question in the city- what was Occupy Philly all about? Yeah, no one really had an answer for that one. But the weather was beautiful and like any decently earned hangover, it gradually went away and we were able to move on with our lives. At some point in the afternoon, news came out that Big Ry tore his Achilles and would be out until early June at the earliest. But by then, it was almost white noise. It was like finding out that the night before in a drunken stupor you had punched a baby dolphin in the face. At that point it didn’t matter- it was just more bad news.
Sunday was Eagles’ day in Philly- a chance at redemption, a chance at good news, a chance to put a smile on the face of a city that had been pouting for a day and a half. For Future Wife and me, it was mostly just a Sunday until 4:15- then it was time for the Patriots’ game- a game that was thankfully broadcasted nationally. We would not be affected in anyway by the Eagles’ game. Our allegiance to Philadelphia sports had run its course and had been shelved until next April. All we could do was put together a shopping list to have ready if the Birds lost so we’d be prepared for the looting.
Well the Eagles did lose. They lost again, for the fourth time in a row. After Boardwalk Empire (quickly becoming the best show on TV,) we briefly watched the local news and even the anchor sounded disgusted. They ran through a rundown of interviews with fans who all shared one common trait (and that doesn’t count “still looking hammered”) - these fans were pissed. They were pissed at Andy Reid, pissed at Vick and they were pissed at Eagles’ ownership. It’s a good thing today is a holiday, because I don’t think anyone in Philly would be going to work today anyway.
And more importantly, it’s a good thing I didn’t hitch my wagon to the Eagles like I did with the Phillies.
So today, amongst all the things I’m lucky for- not being an Eagles’ fan tops the list.