Formerly Felines for Anarchistic Green Democracies

A Bostonian at the University of Michigan.

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How bad is Keith Foulke really?
Harry Potter and the Boston Red Sox
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Sunday, October 31, 2004  
Today being Halloween, it seems only appropriate that the Patriots should put on the costume of a godawful football team for a day.

A minute digression. Lions lost today. It wasn't a horrible game, we had 3 interceptions against the Cowboys. But we also managed to kill ourselves with penalties. This proves that my trepidations about Bill Simmons picking the Lions to win this week were entirely justified. Go back to hating Joey Harrington, Bill. It's better for everyone.

I thought to myself, "Well, the Lions lost. It's OK, I'll watch the Patriots game this afternoon. Heck, it should be a good game, so I'll do one of those running diary things! Everyone will be entertained!"

It was... well. It wasn't pretty. I can only assume that someone, somewhere, is getting even with New England after the Red Sox won the World Series. Of course, I have to laugh a little bit, because one or two games lost by the Red Sox is hardly cause for the Nation to hang itself. Here we have one Patriots loss, and I want to break the TV. Sigh. We were spoiled, New England, we have to admit it. Regardless. The diary stands, in all its hideous madness. Read it if you dare.

9:29 First Quarter: I missed the opening field goal in the Pats/Steelers game, because CBS thought it was more important to show a bunch of commercials. Lovely. I could understand, maybe, if they found it necessary to show the last minute of the Colts/Chiefs game, but they cut away from that too. How does that make sense? We'll cut out the end of one game and the beginning of another, all so that you can see commercials for Jeeps.

8:29: The picture they have of Kevin Faulk makes it look his facial hair was scrubbed off with a brillo pad. He also appears to be grimacing. Maybe that's because he was just attacked with a brillo pad.

8:00: The punter had to step over to catch the ball, and then the punt couldn't be downed, so it's a touchback. The announcers call it a 'mishandle', but so far as I'm concerned a touchback is the norm, and if someone manages to down the ball just outside of the endzone it's a bonus. It's not a given thing that someone screws up. Does this make sense to anyone else? Although, on the replay, Dexter Reed actually could have had that. Oh well. It's still early.

7:28: OK, CBS, you can't count a win streak with a mix of college and professional games. The last team to beat Roethlisberergererer was Iowa. That's nice, but college ball and pro ball are very, very different critters. Just ask Ty Detmer.

5:30: Hey Plexiglass Burress, pass interference when your own team is on offense? Lovely. Don't talk about the rules being changed for the Patriots if you're going to pull stunts like that.

5:25: Oh god, Ty Law's down. He was limping towards the sideline and never quite got there. I feel sick. "Isn't that Harold?" "MMMMmmhmm. Daytime wireless calls were too expensive, so he went nocturnal." I feel like Harold there in the headlights. Ty Law. Please be OK.

3:47: Plexiglass goes waaaay down the field and Roethlisbergererererer hits him perfectly in his stride, Steelers touchdown. A perfectly executed toss. I hate to buy into this whole 'next Tom Brady' thing, but goddamn if that didn't look like a Tom Brady-esque play. Feel more sick. Maybe it's time to go back to the Maya homework?

3:42: The new Chrysler... thing is certainly an interesting design concept. It has a vaguely phallic look to it, although maybe that's just my imagination. Decidedly weird lines, in any event. I can't wait for the Detroit Auto Show. Maybe I'll just think about that for a while instead of watching the game.

3:31: Brady fumbles, he was hit while trying to throw the ball. That was unpleasant. Very, very unpleasant. CBS reminds us yet again that Corey Dillon is not in the game. Are they trying to say that we've become reliant on the run? Cripes. They might be right.

2:36: I don't want to lose to this Steelers team. Not after Plexiglass complaining that we don't play by the rules. I'm not sure what team I'd want us to lose to, but definitely not the Steelers. Where is our defense? Dunce Staley blasted up the lines. And they're back in the red zone. This is where you're good, guys. C'mon.

0:42: Tom Brady, on the sideline, is pissed. So am I. Burress just caught another touchdown. Bill Belichick is challenging it, but it looks good to me and the announcers. Crapsicles. Now I get to watch some poorly animated brown squares float through cities. What can Brown do for you? Not animate, evidently.

0:29: The Patriots have never been down by more than 3 in this win streak. They are now down by 11. Awesome. You know, I was one of the 'reasonable' people saying that it was totally cool for Curt Schilling to be wearing a Steelers hat a few days ago if he had grown up a Pittsburgh fan. If we lose this game I'm going to be irrationally angry at Schilling. I don't want to be, but there will be no help for it.

0:22: "You would not mispronunciate a word." God, thank you CBS announcers. I feel like I'm back with the unique aural stylings of Tim McCarver. And then the Steelers pick off Tom Brady and run it in for another touchdown. Yup. I'm going to go see if any washing machines are open.

14:56 Second Quarter: And the second quarter starts off with Brady getting sacked. I don't understand this. Why are they melting down? Did someone take compromising pictures involving our offensive line, an industrial-sized can of lard, and seven goats? Because, otherwise, this makes no sense to me.

12:00: Another first down for the Steelers on a rocket to Hines (playing in Heinz Stadium, yuk yuk yuk) Ward. I like how CBS has the two lines, one showing the line of scrimmage and one showing the first down mark. That's about all I like right now on the TV screen.

10:04: Roethlisbergererererer is pressured and sent running, but he still gets the ball off. It's not a first down, but it's a completion. I want to play Miami of Ohio again. I didn't fully appreciate the 43-10 drubbing we gave them earlier this year. We need to do it again so that I can feel properly vengeful.

9:22: Some guy who just got activated this morning carries the ball for us and gets it back to the line of scrimmage. Oh wait, he got one yard. Awesome. The horrible air brakes are back outside again.

7:51: Please, please, please do not leave FlappingGums Owens and the Eagles the only undefeated team in the NFL after today.

7:45: Brady overthrows David Givens, who was double-covered anyways. 3rd and 15. Next play he airs it out again, to Bethel Johnson, who is triple-covered. The ball, unsurprisingly, is picked off. By Ike Taylor, who I think is some sort of backup. You know what's sad? The Lions played better than this today. The Lions played a lot better than this today. And they lost too.

4:48: I'm sure something's going on in the game, but I just spent the past 3 minutes reading through everyone's away messages. I'd write down the interesting ones, except that there aren't any. Except for one by a young lady attending Skidmore College, in which she refers to her peers as 'Skiddies' with complete seriousness. This needs to be abolished. It's first and goal for the Steelers. The Busboy is in the game.

2:47: Roethlisbergereererer misses Riemersma in the endzone. Fun fact! Riemersma graduated from the good ol' University of Michigan. Right now this is failing to instill any great joy or pride in my heart. The Steelers are going to kick a field goal after the commercials. My hatred for the 'beep beep!' Nextel walkie-talkie phenomenon knows no bounds, so lets all thank CBS for running that particular commercial and getting me even more worked up than I was before.

2:00: The Patriots are down by 3 touchdowns. I keep reminding myself that the Red Sox were 3 games down and 3 outs away from complete elimination, but they came back to win it all. Michigan came back from two touchdowns and a field goal with only 8 minutes left in the whole game, while the Pats have two minutes and a whole half to work with here. I am not very good at comforting myself.

0:51: We’re finally in their red zone. And Brady zips one right past Christian Fauria, who looks like he kicked up a chunk of turf when he fell over. Ty Law also seems to have injured himself while sliding on the turf. Have the Steelers poured oil on the field? I’ll believe any explanation for this sorry performance right now.

0:42: David Givens catches a touchdown. OK. With the kick, that’ll make it 10-24, which is painful, but no longer insurmountable. This is valuable too, as it’ll be important to the team’s mental health going into halftime.

0:34: If the Steelers don’t score again, that is. That’s right boys, let him run the kickoff back to the 38. Go ahead. It’s not like you need to play defense right now or anything.

0:13: Roethlisbergerererrererr has set the Steelers record today for the most touchdown passes by a rookie with more than 13 letters in his name.

Halftime. I’m going to go muck around with light pollution photos for my longterm art lecture assignment. Jolly good. If Belichick doesn’t beat some sense into these kids at halftime we have no chance. My aversion to losing to this Steelers team is growing steadily by the minute. I’ll give CBS this: their musical selections are about 500 times better than FOX’s are.

Going into the second half, the Patriots have –1 yards rushing. I just want to throw that out there.

14:45 Third Quarter: Gosh, we’ve fumbled the ball. Steelers have it. I’ll take this moment to stare up at the ceiling and hope that the painful fluorescent light will burn out my corneas and spare me this horror.

14:38: The guy we have in for the injured Ty Law is Randall Gay. He’s getting his ass destroyed by the Steelers offense. There’s a tasteless joke in there somewhere. Busboy just got another Steeler touchdown, by the way. I’m not sure why I’m still watching this, but I feel like it’s something I can’t just give up on, no matter how horrible it is.

12:58: Bethel Johnson returns his 54,678th kickoff of the day. What did we do to deserve this? Is is because the Red Sox won? Is this some kind of cosmic imbalance trying to even itself out?

11:19: Three straight completions to Troy Brown. This is good, because we’re actually moving up the field, but we can’t keep going to him or the Steelers will just find a new way to suck the life out of our offense.

10:56: In high school, the CBS crew informs us, David Patten’s quarterback was Pokey Reese. Of the Boston Red Sox. I had no idea. Pokey’s so little, how in the world did he ever play football? I don’t quite know what to make of this, but I feel like it’s a little golden nugget of information in the giant slurry of mud that is this football game.

10:44: We’re within goal range, but we just wasted three downs trying to throw the ball into the endzone. Unsuccessfully, I might add. Vinatieri comes on to try for a field goal, which right now seems a bit like trying to bail out a sinking cruise ship with Corey Dillons’ protective cup.

10:35: We have another man down on the field. Oh, it’s Randall Gay. The guy who went in for Ty Law, who went down earlier in the game. I HEAR YOU GOD, BUT I STILL DON’T REGRET THE RED SOX WIN. DO YOUR WORST!

9:17: I just cast my vote in the CBS Sports Poll for best young running back in the NFL. I voted for Kevin Brown, because he’s on Detroit and I figure no one else will vote for him. Ah, yup, here are the results. Kevin Brown is in dead last, with a whopping 7.4% of the vote. Since 3749 people have voted so far, that’s 277.43 voting for the beleaguered Lion. This game is so painful that I’ve resorted to doing math. And wondering about the .43 of a person who voted. A mystery!

4:51: The Busboy just got a 9 yard run, his longest of the season. Richard Seymour was snapping at him after the play. We keep that up and we’re going to get penalized for it. Not that it would matter much at this point, but it’s the principle of the thing.

2:06: Steelers get another field goal, to put the game back at 3 touchdowns away. I don’t drink, but if I did, now would be a good time to start. What font are the Steelers using for their uniform numbers? It looks vaguely familiar, but I can’t quite place it. On a related note, who wants to put good money on the probability that I’m one of the only people watching this game who is actually interested in fonts and typefaces?

1:10: It’s 2nd down and 20. Tom Brady is actually getting a bit more protection this quarter and literally as I type that, swear to God and the Red Sox, the Steelers sack him. OK. I’m scared now.

0:22: You know what we haven’t heard much of today? The names of the Patriots defensemen. Where the hell is Tedy Bruschi? Have we heard from him even once today? What about Willie McGinest? The only thing I’ve heard about Richard Seymour is that he keeps jawing with Steelers in a vaguely threatening fashion. One has to wonder where these guys are today.

14:52 Fourth Quarter: Ah, they finally say Tedy Bruschi’s name. Of course, they say it in the context of running down Dunce Staley, who is ‘putting up the numbers’ today. I feel cheated here. I was looking forward to watching some good football after the Lions lost earlier this afternoon, but it turns out that that was the better game.

12:45: Roethlisbergererererer runs for a first down. “That kind of day for the Steelers,” the announcers say, admiringly. As well they should.

10:30: Ty Warren ‘decked’ Roethlisbergerererrer after the ball left. I think we got away with one there. Am I the only one thinking that maybe we can blame this loss on Theresa Heinz-Kerry? It's her bloody stadium. I’m getting bitter, I really am. I’m going to have to spend a good solid hour after this game looking at Red Sox victory parade photos if I want to recover my equanimity.

9:23: For the first time since the first quarter, the Patriots have positive rushing yardage.

8:02: You know, we don’t have to be undefeated to get to the playoffs. If the Jets win tomorrow night (they’re playing the Dolphins, so we’re working with this assumption) we’ll be tied with them at the top of our conference. I’m reaching here, people, help me out with this. Brady just got sacked again. 3rd and 12.

7:18: For once, a flag goes against the Steelers. We decline it, since we have the first down anyways. Awesome. We’re at the 25. Some oversized Steeler tackles Kevin Faulk on a run and just squats over him after the play like a wild boar over a newly discovered trove of edible roots. I use that particular metaphor because it is exactly that disgusting.

6:33: Brady’s pass complete to David Givens! Patriots touchdown! What a catch, he was scooting out the back of the endzone, but I guess he dragged his foot enough for it to count. The officials are taking their sweet time spotting the ball to give Cowherd a chance to challenge it, but he didn’t bother. His team’s still two touchdowns ahead, I suppose he doesn’t feel the need to waste a timeout on this.

6:27: Woah, shot of the Patriots sideline. Who has the frosted tips? He looked like Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Who the heck was that? I didn’t get a good look at the jersey. By the way, if we don’t get an interception or some other sort of defensive break, we have no chance in this game. Unfortunately, the Steelers like running the ball right now.

note: A little judicious research reveals that the frosty-haired Patriot is one Kevin Kasper. He has a fanpage devoted to him. And just when you thought this debacle couldn't get any more uncomfortable.

4:10: “Hey Jim, I heard you stopped over at a deli yesterday and you got a RoethlisBURGER! Har har har! and guess how much it costs? Seven dollars. Because that's his number! You know you’re doing well and you’re hot stuff when they start naming sandwiches and hamburgers after you.”

2:32: Next week we play the Rams, followed by the Bills, then the Chiefs, Ravens, and Browns. We can win some of those, maybe even all of them. This isn’t the end of the world.

2:15: I lied. The Busboy just ran for 30 yards. Tom Brady is sitting on the sideline looking upset. Clearly, someone needs to get hurt for this.

1:46: The Steelers are sitting on the ball and running out the clock. I hope the Eagles destroy the Steelers next week. No, I hope the Steelers beat up on the Eagles so no one is undefeated in the NFL. I hope both teams decimate the other with injuries so that they have to go to all their third string players for the rest of the year. Yes. That is the best scenario.

No no no Curt Schilling. This simultaneously makes me want to laugh and start sobbing uncontrollably. The funny part is the Kerry-supporting members of the Red Sox management saying that "when George W. Bush was owner of the Texas Rangers he voted against creation of the wild card. The Red Sox, of course, qualified for the playoffs through the wild card," and therefore if Bush had had his way the Sox would never have been in the World Series.

The part that makes me cry is Schilling making automated phone calls saying, "These past couple of weeks, Sox fans ... trusted me when it was my turn on the mound. Now you can trust me on this: President Bush is the right leader for our country.'' The calls are supposed to be used in the swing states New Hampshire, Maine, and Pennsylvania. NOT COOL CURT SCHILLING. NH and Maine are both Sox fans states! You can't abuse your status like that! That's not nice! It would be like Johnny Damon trying to influence Church policy or something!

I've had it. I need to finish this damn Maya work at some point tonight, and I should really go to sleep early. Good times. At least Michigan won yesterday. I'll have that to sustain me through the weekend.

edit: I promised, and I deliver. Here you may see my Maya snowman if you so desire. Good times. It wasn't so hard once I figured out the commands to move your point of view around, because it's all just stock polygonal forms that I manipulated. I guess tomorrow morning we learn coloring and texturing and such things and apply them to our snowmen. If we do more with them maybe I'll post the new versions eventually.

7:30 PM

Saturday, October 30, 2004  
I was not, obviously, at the Red Sox victory parade today. Initially I was pretty upset about this (I mean, who knows when or if this will ever happen again?), but it turns out that I had such an amazing and ridiculous day that I actually forgot all about the parade until I got home tonight. More on that shortly.

How amazing is that image? Not only do you have the joys of Kevin Millar and Doug Mientkiewicz, you get the added bonus of Manny Ramirez holding a sign. A truly delightful sign. I want to give Manny a hug for carrying it, even if he probably didn't make it. *wipes tear of joy from eye* That said, let us hope that this does not serve to energize the Yanks come April, as Sheffield's tasteless remarks did for us. At least this sign is just simple, good-natured taunting, as opposed to what Sheffield said, which was truly inflammatory.

In any event, that wasn't the highlight of my day. Day, afternoon, and evening.

Wait, you say. Isn't that Michigan Stadium? But I thought the game today was at 3:30 in the afternoon!

Ah, I reply. So it was, so it was. And it was Michigan/Michigan State, at Michigan, which everyone with two eyes and half a brain had picked Michigan to win. Alas, it was not meant to be so simple.

The first three quarters of the game were, to put it mildly, painful. We kept running Michael Hart, which is fine, really, he's very good, but you just can't run one guy all the time and expect the other team to not pick up on it. He had his third straight 200-yard game today, which is impressive, but still. We had something ridiculous like 15 passing yards going into halftime. Why weren't we throwing it? It's not as though we didn't have anyone to throw to, because we do. Braylon Edwards is great, and no one in the crowd could figure out why the heck we weren't going to him.

In the fourth quarter, it was just getting sad. People were leaving (although, since the stadium is so huge, it apparently looked like everyone was still there to the folks watching the game on TV). "Can we come back?" Leslie asked. "Well, we're down two touchdowns," I muttered. "So it's possible?" "Um. Yeah." "Is it probable?" "Um. No." We were contemplating departure ourselves. Hey, it was getting late, the sun was down, it was freezing cold and we were starving. Generously, as she's not really a football person, Leslie said, "Well, you know what, we'll wait for the 5 minute mark, and then we'll go." Thank. Goodness.

Because, you see, with around 6 and a half minutes left in the game, Michigan finally scored. Chad Henne aired one out to Braylon Edwards (finally!), who caught it on an amazing jump and barely pulled it in for a touchdown. The place erupted. Absolutely erupted. Seconds before the crowd had been dejected, grumbling, leaving. Suddenly everyone was leaping into the air, screaming at the tops of their lungs, high fiving everyone in sight, throwing ripped-up newspapers and programs into the air, where they made impressive clouds of reflective white as they drifted in front of the artificial lights. Two guys in full-body costumes, one a lobster and one a chicken, went crowd surfing all the way from the bottom of the stadium to near the top. A giant inflatable phallus with 'Fuck State!' painted cheerfully along its sides emerged from the crowd and was enthusiastically passed around half the stadium.

The band, elated, launched into a stirring rendition of 'Living on a Prayer', which the entire student section sang along to. It was quite startling to hear hoarse sorority girls and crazed football fans raising their voices together to wail, "Oh-o-o, we're halfway there! Oh-o-o, livin' on a prayer! Take my hand and we'll make it, I swear! Oh oh, livin' on a prayer!"

Then we kicked an onside kick. Which we recovered. And we scored again, tying the game at 27 and sending the crowd into ridiculous paroxysms of joy. State got the ball back and went for a long field goal, which they missed. We were taking the game into overtime! This was exciting, as I'd never been to an overtime game at Michigan before. It was also unfortunate, because by now the sun was completely down and the ambient temperature, which had been around 70 F when the game started had dropped to around 35, with the windchill. Most everyone (myself included) was wearing some form of t-shirt, and this did not make for happy circulatory systems in fingers as the game progressed.

First overtime. We got the ball first, and managed to get a field goal. State took the ball, and got a field goal. Curses. Infinite curses. That meant we needed to go to a second overtime. By now I could not feel my feet or lower legs, and the gorillaish chest-thumping of the guy in front of us was starting to take on a worryingly desperate air.

Second overtime. They score. We score. 37-37. The numbness had spread to my hands and arms. Also, much hunger. Leslie was threatening to leave at 8:30 no matter what happened. As we shivered and shook through another ill-advised media timeout, she glared at her watch. "Did I say 8:30? I mean 8:10."

Third overtime. We got the ball first. And... Braylon's got the ball! Michigan touchdown! More eruptions of joy, more homemade confetti. Apparently there's some rule in college football that you have to go for the two point conversion after a touchdown if it's the third overtime (presumably to keep the game from going on into infinity), but I only found this out after the fact. At the time all us poor, frozen souls in the stands could see was that our boys were finally taking the initiative and going for two.

Henne reared back. The stadium, hushed by students frantically waving their arms, was as silent as I've ever heard it, to give our offense an easier time calling plays. Henne looked to the endzone. Who was open? Edwards? Where was he? Green helmets nudged their way towards Henne. The ball, released, shoveled through the air inelegantly, landing in the brawny forearms of Tim Massaquoi, who was planted firmly at the back of the endzone. Pandemonium. Complete and utter pandemonium.

The game, however, was not over. State now had their turn with the ball. As the crowd counted downs, our defense suddenly decided to show up, after having been absent for most of the game. An incomplete pass into the endzone was State's last play of the game, and Michigan won, 45-37, in triple overtime. The game ended around 8:15 pm, after having started at 3:30. That's nearly 5 hours, mind you. I'm still not at all sure how we survived.

We raced out of there as fast as our stiff legs could carry us, staggering out of the unlit tunnel (can you say 'safety hazard'?) into the area within the stadium gates. Jubilant Michigan fans in varying stages of exhaustion and varying levels of face-paintedness reared up out of the darkness, lurching towards their chosen exit point. Stunned State fans also made their way to the gates, although their pace was more one of plodding disbelief. After all, they had been up by two touchdowns and a field goal with 8 minutes left in the game.

We didn't really care. All we could think about was sitting down (you don't sit down at a Michigan game, you stand on the bleachers) somewhere warm, with warm food. "Pizza," my brain moaned. "You get me pizza, and I will love you forever." To the Union!

Since we had charged out of the stadium with such celerity, we managed to get to the Union before the big crowds arrived. Ah, blessed warmth. Blessed food. The win hadn't really sunk in yet. Indeed, it didn't really hit until I came back to the dorm and collapsed, completely done in, at my computer. I flicked on the TV to watch the Miami/UNC game (which UNC won in a crazy upset victory, by the by... no overtime though, the cowards), which brought Nate and his friend Alex in. Nate had left the game early when it looked like we were losing, then had seen a TV on his way back and had flipped out and run back to the stadium. The guards wouldn't let them back in, so he and his friends had gone around, jumped the fence (!) and made it back in time to see State miss the long field goal that sent us into overtime. As he said, "It was like God was telling me to get my black ass back in there. I never woulda forgiven myself if I'd missed that."

His friend Alex claimed that if Michigan had lost this game he was going to seriously consider transferring to USC, but now he would stay at Michigan. Madness. He then proceeded to pass out on my bed for about 45 minutes, until Nate came wandering back in and poked at him to make him get up. By this point I was on the phone with my dad about the Michigan game and how wild it had been (my family had had dinner reservations at a local restaurant, which they had pushed back a number of times because the game just kept going on and on). I still can't quite believe that we won.

Oh, I did promise that I was going to take my camera to this one, and so I did. Michigan/Michigan State Game, Oct. 30, 2004. This was one for the history books, kids, and I was there. I've got the photos to prove it.

Tomorrow it's Lions and Pats. Both should be good games, although who knows? The Lions seem to be intent on showing everyone that you can never predict how they're going to do from one week to the next, and the Pats are going up against a team whose quarterback is being called 'the next Tom Brady'. I refuse to speculate. We'll just have to see. The Dolphins have the Monday Night Football slot, which is cool, but they're playing the Jets, which is not cool. Just because the Jets are no longer undefeated does not mean that they will lie down and let a very shaky Dolphins offense run over them, especially in New York. But again, one never knows.

Oh, and Mark Bellhorn on the cover of Sports Illustrated? How amazing is that? Of all the Red Sox to get put on there, how excited do you think Bellhorn is that he made it? I feel... vindicated. When does this come out for general purchase? Anyone know?

In other Sox notes, Bill Mueller's option was picked up, so he'll be back next year for sure. Excellent. Another year of eye candy at third base. And Curt Schilling, although he still backs Bush, will not actually be campaigning with him, and admits that he was wrong to have made that statement publically (see Boston Dirt Dogs... you have to scroll down a bit). Hrmph. Whatever.

Oh, in art lecture on Thursday, the night after the Red Sox won the Series, Joe came in and congratulated me for my team's win. This sparked a baseball discussion. Of sorts.

Carla: "So, how many points do you get if you hit the ball?"
Me: "Err. It depends how many people are on base. You get one for every person who goes over home plate."
Carla: "So every time you hit the ball you get a point?"
Me: "Ah. No. If the other team catches it in the air you don't get anything. If the ball goes out of the park you go around all the bases and get a point."
Carla: "But if you touch three bases, don't you get three points?"

At this point I turned to helplessly to Littany, who was sitting on my other side. "How do I even begin to explain this?" I asked, desperately. She dissolved into laughter. See, this is why I sometimes have issues with the art school.

That's about all. Football tomorrow, if I feel up to it. Maybe I'll even post a bit of my Maya homework, if it seems worth posting. And Halloween? Who knows. G'night, kids.

edit: A final note-- the attendance at tonight's Michigan game was 111,609. This doesn't set the record (we did that last year at the Michigan/Ohio State game, with 112,118), but it was indeed the largest number of people watching a football game anywhere in the world today. Score.

edit again, because I can't seem to leave this thing alone and just go to sleep already: Bill Simmons finally picks the Lions to win their game in his NFL predictions for this week. Since he's consistently picked us to lose in games that we go on to win, does this mean that we won't win tomorrow? Is he finally coming around on his inexplicable dislike of Joey Harrington? Interestingly, he has us ranked as 'Improbably Lurking' at number 9 in his Power Poll, above all sorts of other teams (23 of them, in fact). I'm nervous. He's been so steadfast in his dislike of us that this sudden tinge of favor has me running for the hills.

Of course, he doesn't seem to be hurting the Patriots any. Just thought I'd mention it.

Also, Nomar quietly returns to Boston on the day before the parade. They're giving him a full World Series share. Hm. I'm not sure what to think about this one. On the one hand, he played for us for so long, and was such a face of the franchise. On the other hand, he went out whining and creating friction in the clubhouse.

I guess since we won it all I can set aside any lingering bitterness and make my peace with the Still-Living Ghost of Nomar. Heck, if the Sox can do it, so can I.

11:28 PM

Friday, October 29, 2004  
There is a huge sign on my door that says 1918-2004, World Champions. It's got the entire Red Sox lineup named on it, and a bad drawing of Johnny Damon. I think I did it last night, but I don't really have any memory of this. People are writing 'Congratulations Boston, and congratulations *insert real name here*!' As though it's as much my victory as it is the team's. Thanks to everyone who left me a note, cornered me in the halls, high-fived me in the street and hugged me in class. I know that most of you have viewed my reactions this season with a certain degree of, ah, amusement (or, as my CFC professor said to me just this afternoon: 'Get a life!'), but you've mostly been very good about this all, and I sincerely appreciate it.

Oh man. "Just bring me back, gimme less work, gimme more money, and we'll be good." That's Jason Taylor of the Miami Dolphins, dressed up and acting like Ricky Williams for Halloween. Wow. No way Ricky Williams is ever playing in Miami again. Jason Taylor, you are absolutely amazing. And ESPN is amazing for showing us that. Thank you, Sportscenter.

Hmph. However, don't think I'm letting you off the hook for not taking Gameday to Michigan for the Michigan/Michigan State football game this weekend. Sure, foist Cold Pizza off on us. I don't care if there's some kind of showdown in Oklahoma, you people should be in Ann Arbor. This is just lame. Right. Turning off the TV now, there's only so many times you can watch the same ads without starting to go mad.

This is my desktop image right now. Hoo yes.

I think this World Series starting to sink in. A little bit. Only a little bit. I'm still trying to wrap my brain around it. We won. We won. The team of perpetual bad luck, perpetual bad managing, perpetual losses, has finally won. Red Sox Nation is in a state of elated shock, so far as I can tell from my somewhat distant outpost, and so they should be. To those of you out there who are saying that Sox fans secretly harbor masochistic yearnings to support a losing team, and that RSN will lose all of its character and everything that makes it great because we've finally won, I have one thing to say: You People are Morons.

We're going to like the team less because they won? Don't be ridiculous. If anything, the fanbase will expand, because all sorts of casual fans and bandwagon fans will be leaping aboard. Whether or not this is necessarily a good thing remains to be seen (Bill Simmons, as usual, sums this up perfectly: 'Fox shows Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore wearing Red Sox sweatshirts and clapping excitedly. I wish I was actually driving the Red Sox Bandwagon right now, just so I could screech to a halt, whirl around, point to them and scream, "Get off! RIGHT NOW! I mean it! Get off! Move it! Gather your things and GET OFF!"'), but to say that hanging a World Series banner up at Fenway will somehow lessen the fans is just a ridiculous statement. I feel like I'm overusing the word 'ridiculous', but I'm too tired to go hunting through a thesaurus right now.

The team will not be the same next year. It will not be the same group of lovable idiots that we all discussed and watched and downloaded pictures of all season. The contracts are up for Pedro, Lowe, Varitek, and Cabrera. Feel free to inform me if I'm missing someone there. Will we keep at least one of them? Probably. I can't imagine us getting rid of Varitek if it's at all possible to keep him... he's our captain, for cats' sake, and in many ways he was the heart of the team. Cabby... there's apparently some kid in the minors who we're expecting to pan out in a couple of years, so if Cabrera asks for too long a contract he might be gone, but I have to believe that they'll try to keep him otherwise. As for Pedro and Lowe, I have no idea. It all depends on how much they ask. If Pedro is capable of valuing himself properly, we might keep him, but I have my doubts about this. Lowe is completely up in the air. He won the three clinching games in these three postseason series, which is simply amazing. But he was also less-than-sterling in the regular season. How does one even approach resigning a guy like that? Again, I think it'll depend on what he's asking for. If he asks for too much he'll probably find another team to take him on.

However, a lot of the team will be back. They'll still be the same guys, the same free-and-easy kind of club that we all loved to watch the Yankees hate this year. If anyone thinks that people won't follow them with the same passion because they finally gave us what we've been collectively yearning for for 86 years, they're out of their minds. Essentially this entire rant says, "Jim Rome (and all others who subscribe this this same philosophy), your ideas are charmingly flawed and simply show that you are not a member of Red Sox Nation. We'll thank you to take your weird vocal emphasises and your ill-conceived opinions elsewhere."

Oh, and for those who haven't heard, we play the Yankees in our home season opener come April. That's right. The New York Yankees get to sit in Fenway and watch while we raise the 2004 World Series banner. If the thought of that doesn't warm your heart but good, you haven't got a heart. Or you're a Yankees fan, which is much the same thing.

Curt Schilling... man. I mean, you know I love you for what you did for us. I love the way you handle the media and the fans. I'd defend you to the death against those sad people who call you an attention-mongerer. It makes me steam, the way that some people are trying to ruin one of the best and most courageous performances in baseball history by insinuating that your ankle wasn't really as hurt as it was, even going so far as to claim that the blood on your sock was fake (I'd put in a couple of links to the articles, but I really don't want anything to do with them, even linking).

The whole uber-Christian thing freaked me out a little, but I was perfectly willing to overlook it, because you're Curt Schilling! You came to this team and gave it your all, mentally, emotionally, and physically. If you want to lay it all on God, that's fine, it's your choice. [A side note-- if Schilling is that religious, what on earth does he think of the whole Johnny-Damon-as-Jesus thing? How has this not been addressed before?]

But Curt. Come on. This sort of thing? I don't know what to say. How disappointing. You're a great ballplayer, and you did great things for us this year, but it's going to take me a while to get over that (probably by trying to forget that it ever happened).

Tomorrow I have to wake up early to do laundry, since I seem to have left it a bit long. I have a grand total of zero clean pairs of pants left. I think that's a pretty good sign that I need to do laundry. After bio Pam is picking me up and we're going to go check out a few houses for possibly accomodations for next year. Then it will be work all Friday night (what excitement!), the Michigan/Michigan State game on Saturday (actual, non-sarcastic excitement!), and football TV watching on Sunday (Lions/Cowboys at 1, Pats/Steelers at 4:15, if it's on). Oh, and Halloween, which could mean anything from sedate caramel apple-making in the dorm with Carla to roaming State Street in the wee hours. We'll see.

As usual, if you want actual good writing about the Sox, you're going to have to go to Bill Simmons. If you want a blog that's actually on top of this, you're going to have to go to Surviving Grady, Cursed to First, or someone else listed over on the side. Good times all around.

We close with Manny Ramirez's quote from last night, when asked if he believes in curses:

"I don't believe in curse, I believe you make your own destination."

Thank you, Manny. Thank you.

2:09 AM

Thursday, October 28, 2004  

Photo via

And in the end, what will we remember?

Johnny Damon, in the first at-bat of the game, sending a ball soaring through the air, through the stands, and straight into history?

Pedro Martinez in the dugout, dancing to his own private internal music, rotating his arms furiously when his teammates rounded the bases, wrapping people up in enormous hugs as they came down the steps?

Derek Lowe forcing pop fly-out after pop fly-out, his occasional wild pitch soothed away by a mound visit from Varitek?

Trot Nixon peering up at the sky from underneath a rosin-whitened hat, glove coming up to snatch the ball out of midair?

Yabier Molina and Manny Ramirez exchanging pointed words that, had they come from a Yankee mouth, would probably have resulted in a brawl?

Bill Mueller snagging a rocketing line drive out of the air, only to straighten up and promptly blow an enormous, pink bubble?

Seeing video of Jason Varitek as a little kid in the Little League World Championships?

Mark Bellhorn getting intentionally walked?

The guy you're watching the game with suddenly learning that Albert Pujols' last name is pronounced 'Poo holes', thusly causing him to dissolve into helpless laughter for a worryingly long time?

Reloading the game thread on the message board you're half watching, to be greeted by the sight of the Gabe Kapler photo that one of the members has posted?

Keith Foulke milking the last out for all it was worth, cradling the ball after he fielded it and seeming to drift, unsubstantial, towards first?

Doug Mientkiewicz catching the final out toss from Foulke, foot planted on the plate, then leaping upwards as though springs were attached to his shoes?

Bronson Arroyo hurling his lanky frame to the top of the victory pile, hat flying off in the melee, revealing his cornrows to all who care to look?

The light of a hundred cameras glinting, white-gold, off the frosted tips of Kevin Millar's hair?

Curtis Leskanic doing snow angels on the grass of the infield?

Mike Timlin, surrounded by a thick nimbus of media as he hauls the World Series trophy onto the field?

Orlando Cabrera hoisting the trophy into the air, wearing a bright yellow Columbia tshirt?

David Ortiz, balancing the trophy on his head, telling the fans that this is for them, while winking at the camera?

Dave Roberts waving the trophy in the air, screaming, perched incongruously on the broad shoulders of Mike Timlin, while the announcers talk about 'the little guy getting some time with the hardware'?

Curt Schilling hugging the ESPN guy at the end of the interview, as the interviewer says, "I love you"?

Theo Epstein, soaked with champagne, pulling the trophy close to his chest and declaring that 'We can all die happy'?

Terry Francona crying?

Jason Varitek falling to his knees as the enormity of the moment strikes him, Kevin Millar leaning down to hug him?

Yes, this is what we'll remember.

I was screaming and sobbing on Brad's shoulder, emitting strangled gasps about 'history', 'lifetime', and 'love', while he tried to keep me from falling over and kept repeating, in a marvelling tone of voice, "You're shaking. You're actually shaking." I was clinging, partially insensible, to Nate, who held up 4 fingers so that Brad could take a picture. I was sitting down on the bed, blurrily watching the postgame show, while Jun patted my back and proudly displayed his Manny (MVP!) tshirt.

So. Where were you? Where were you when the Red Sox dispelled the Yankees, the Curse, the bitterness, and the baggage? Take this night and wrap it up in tinfoil. Store it away. Keep it fresh and shining and safe. It's something to remember.

4:53 AM

Wednesday, October 27, 2004  
What can I say? It's Wednesday. By this time tomorrow night (early morning), the Red Sox may have gone 3-1 in the World Series.

Or (dare I say it? everyone else already has) they could have won it all.

Pedro Martinez pitched his first World Series game today. He got us one vital step closer to hanging up a brand new sign alongside that one.

Pedro today pitched a gem. Not a good game, not a tolerable game, not a keeping-them-down-until-we-can-stretch-in-our-bullpen kind of game. A real, honest-to-gosh, old school Pedro kind of game. The kind where he rocked a little in the first inning, then warmed up, settled down and completely destroyed the opposing batters. The kind where he looked dominant throughout.

There was no weak falter at the end to ruin our memory of him tonight. Francona took him out for the 8th, letting Timlin and Foulke finish the job, and Red Sox Nation should be forever grateful for this. If this is the last game Pedro ever plays in a Boston uniform, I don't want to remember him going off the field shaking his head, Cardinals dancing on the turf behind him. I want to remember him going out like he did tonight, pointing towards the sky, head raised in... reverence for the moment? Thanks for the opportunity to be there? Momentary spiritual peace? Overwhelming joy? It doesn't matter. What matters is that it happened tonight, and when Pedro left the mound he left all the 'Who's your daddy?' chants and all the Yankee-lost runs that hadn't been exorcised by the ALCS win out there behind him.

I had class last night from 7:30 to 9, but it's on North campus, which means that the actual times, accounting for transit, are closer to 7-9:30. All afternoon, in the scant few moments I had between lab, and lunch, and afternoon class, I had been checking the weather and every baseball site I could think of. It looked as though a rain delay was a certainty, maybe even a rain-out. By the time 6:55 rolled around, I was in an agony of indecision. Go to class? Skip class? I'm the sort of person who, for whatever unfathomable reason, never skips class unless I'm dying a slow and painful death, but I was perfectly and cheerfully willing to skip for a Red Sox World Series game. But if I skipped class and the game didn't even happen, or didn't start until I would have gotten home anyways... well. 'Consuming guilt' is one way of describing the likely reaction, although there are probably more colorful turns of phrase that one could use.

Waffling horribly, I resorted to the internet version of pacing: frantically flipping between the Sons of Sam Horn game thread and the Surviving Grady Message Board game thread, trying to glean any hint about the weather with which to advise myself. It was Amy, a poster on there, who voiced what some part of my brain was saying all along:

"My fellow college student: I don't know how important this class is. And I'm the same type of anal "it costs too much for my ass to not be in class" type of student. Which means you probably don't accidentally sleep late, you don't bug off when you just don't feel like going, etc. Even if they don't start on time, even if they lose tonight, it's still history. We've not been here since you and I were in diapers. Thus, I say stay home....This isn't a show. This is the World Series. Take a night off."

Clearly, I owe her, and everyone else over there who helped convince me to stick around, a Very Large Dollop of Thanks. I would never have forgiven myself if I had missed that game. For you see, by a stroke of the same unlikely and unprecedented luck that has surrounded us for much of this postseason, the clouds parted, the field drained*, and the game began right on time.

All the things we had worried about... Manny in the field, Millar out of the lineup, Ortiz at first, Pedro wielding a bat... washed away like worries from years ago. You could look back at them and see why they had concerned you, sort of, but you now view them with a bemused sort of tolerance: That's what worried me? Someone, somewhere has got to be kidding me, right? Our biggest gaffe in the field came when Trot Nixon went down on his back as he ran for the warning track, and that was the fault of the field conditions. Manny, unlikey as it seems, threw a man out at the plate. Ortiz, unlikely as it seems, gunned a routine out that had been flicked at him by Bellhorn to third after the runner (pitcher Jeff Suppan), confusing the third base coach's cries of 'Go! Go!' for 'No! No!', checked his dash for home. With meaningful hits coming out of Manny, Mueller, and Nixon, Millar's absence wasn't particularly noticeable. Pedro, after striking out at the plate, returned to the dugout all smiles, slapping high fives with his teammates, amused in a little-kid way at the whole scenario, and not in the least put off his pitching because of a failure to get on base.

I can't really say what's been going on with the Cardinals. I don't quite know what I expected out of this series, inasmuch as I had any expectations, but 3-0 going into Game 4 with Derek Lowe pitching was not up there. We knew, logically, that the Cardinals pitching rotation did not look all that wonderful, especially when matched with American League batting, but I don't think that anyone can account for the behavior (or, perhaps, nonbehavior) of the Cards' bats. Last night you can chalk it up to Pedro, but in a more general sense I can see no logical explanation for why their famous, hit-producing lineup should have suddenly decided to take pause.

Only a couple of hours left until Game Time. Some things to hold you until then, or after then, or whenever they are needed.

The Curt Schilling interview with Boston Dirt Dogs. Quality stuff, if a little heavy on the God stuff for the less avidly Christian of us out there. Highlight? Curt lambasting some select members of the media. Quote: "...People with so little skill in their profession that they need to speculate, make up, fabricate, to write something interesting enough to be printed. What makes them bad people? I am sure I cannot nail the exact reason, but I know some."

The 'Win it for...' thread on Sons of Sam Horn. You may or may not have heard of this. A poster on SoSH started a thread, naming people that he wanted to Red Sox to win this thing for, starting off with "...Johnny Pesky, who deserves to wear a Red Sox uniform in the dugout during the 2004 World Series." and finishing it with "Most of all, win it for James Lawrence Kelly, 1913-1986. This one's for you, Daddy. You always told me that loyalty and perseverance go hand in hand. Thanks for sharing the best part of you with me." The thread has accrued a ridiculous number of posts, some heart-warming, some tear-inducing, some smile-making. Read it. It's worth it.

Some quotes from last night's Surviving Grady game thread:

Relaying pregame TV coverage that the out of town folk weren't getting: "millar was doing an interview and behind him in the hallway comes d.lowe and he made this noise like a small animal in great pain. and then millar made it back at him as if they were conversing in some private language. it sounded like a primate house in there for a minute."--Beth

"this strike zone is making me want to put a taquito in my eye." --Amy

After McCarver called Pedro 'wily as a wolverine' for unknown, McCarver-ish reasons: "I was going to comment, but I googled it, and they are, apparently, quite wily." --Steve

Referring to Jason Varitek (see end of previous blog): "i believe i just chanted "rip your pants" to my roomate and TV" --javaquarius

"I can't compete with Billy [Mueller]'s ass, I'm afraid." --Steve

"I have been saying this for months. Foulke is hot. I don't know why he is, but he is." --Annette

Some things unrelated to baseball:

Yesterday in lab we were looking at musculature, which meant that I had to skin part of my shark. This is a lot harder than one would think (although, in reality, I have no idea how others think of skinning sharks, in terms of difficulty). It's actually, now that I think back on it, quite disgusting, although it wasn't at the time. The disgusting bit was trying to eat lunch afterwards, and going to my next class with the ambrosial scent of formalin still lingering in my nostrils.

Digital started today. My professor (or teacher, really... he's too young to be a proper professor, I think) took us down to one of the shops to see the laser cutter and the 3D printer, which we'll be using later in the class to actually make the models we'll create on Maya. Maya, for those who don't know, is the industry standard in 3D modelling and 3D animation. It retails for around $2000, and you have to pay to renew your license every year. We got it for $200, with a freely renewing license. I have to give the University enthusiastic props for getting us that deal.

I'm kind of excited for the class, as it promises to at the very least give me a minimal grounding in yet another high-powered program. Now if only someone would give me a few serious lessons in Final Cut Pro...

7:30. I'm going to go turn on ESPN or something and gnaw at myself until the game starts. One more win. It doesn't matter if we get it today, or in Game 7, so long as we get it. And I know full well that you can't count this thing over until the last out of the game has been called, for better or for worse.

But didn't last night feel good?

*When I say 'the field drained', I mean 'the field drained, except for the outfield and the warning track where Trot Nixon went down in a spray of water and mud, causing my heart to leap out of my throat and spatter distractingly on the computer screen, and causing a volley of verbal abuse to be hurled meaningfully at the St. Louis grounds crew, the scurvy lot of 'em.'

7:31 PM

Tuesday, October 26, 2004  
Oh man, I'm a bad person! I forgot the song!

Forward down the field!
A charging team that will not yield!
When the Blue and Silver wave,
Stand and cheer the brave,
Rah! Rah! Rah

Go hard, win the game!
With honor you will keep your fame!
Down the field and gain
A Lions Victory!

That's for the Lions win this weekend. Can't believe I nearly forgot about it. Coach Steve Mariucchi, when asked if he's changed their away routine (since they've now started winning), said, "Yeah, we changed the routine. We put out angel hair pasta, maybe that helped." Amazing. I need to watch the local news more often.

Today was exciting, in that painful 'Holy cats Pedro is pitching tomorrow' kind of way. We had our last drawing class bright and early. I actually managed to stay awake for the entire three hours, despite the two hours of sleep I had gotten the night before. I'm still sort of blinking in shock at the fact that I finished my final pieces. The teacher had cookies for us, which was awfully nice of her.

Bio was also fine, although I'm pretty sure I fell asleep at some point. Prosanta hissed at me from the back of the room before lecture started until I turned around to glare at him. He's a bitter, bitter Mets fan who had been ragging on me about the Sox last week, so when I leaned over the back of my seat it was to give him as good-natured a dirty look as I am capable of giving. To his credit, he was pretty sheepish. "So, er. How 'bout those Sox?" There were a few pointed barbs exchanged about team payrolls, although I did give him credit for Al Leiter. I really need to stop picking fights with my GSI. I'm relatively sure it's not good policy to taunt people who are going to be grading you.

I fell asleep sometime around 5:30, and was completely disoriented when Pam called at 6:30 so we could get off campus and go out to dinner. Then she was nice and took me to Meijer, where I once again probably got everything except what I actually needed. Grocery lists... bah. We met up with Beth and Leslie back at my dorm, and it was like a little slice of last year, which was surprisingly fun. We're all planning to get a house or an apartment together next year, so we worked up a little list of places with 4 bedrooms, reasonable rent, and relatively convenient locations. Thank cats I'm doing this with all of them, because I have no illusions about my ability to do this sort of thing. I would be entirely helpless, and there would be a lot of hand-wringing involved.

Then I watched Monday night football, which was a refreshing game that I had absolutely no emotional investment in, except for a mild inclination in the direction of the Bengals. I think it was mostly due to the awesome tiger they had painted at midfield. Felines representing, and all that. I loaded in Maya (a 3D rendering and animation program), as my digital class starts on Wednesday. I opened it up and tried to see if I could do anything on my own. Answer: most emphatically not. 'Tis a scary, scary program. I'll wait for the instruction.

Tomorrow we play by National League rules, and I plan to be a gibbering wreck by 8. I'll have to ask people in my afternoon art class to take notes for me or something (not that there's ever anything to actually take notes on, but one never knows), as I will not be in evening lecture. Don't give me that look. The Sox haven't been in a World Series since 1986, I think that's slightly more important than a lecture 3/4 of the grade regularly skips anyways.

Parts of campus lost power during the last game, so Beth came over here to watch it. Even if most of Ann Arbor goes out, the dorms usually have power, because they're on independent generators. The University figures, quite rightly, that the chaos of powerless dorms would be much, much more expensive to deal with than the price of a few generators. I've no idea why the power was out, though, since there wasn't any inclement weather that I knew of.

I should probably sleep now. Sleeeeeep. Such a rare, shining gem. Tomorrow in lab we peel the skin off of our sharks and cats and poke at the muscles. Urgh. I don't mind it so much while I'm doing it, but I can never eat lunch afterwards, because everything smells of formalin. Delightful. I'm off to clear the 500 Maya manuals off of my bed, so that I may take their place. Good eve, all.

Wow, look at how I restricted myself to things not related to baseball. I feel your relief, dear reader, coming in palpable waves through the computer. It won't last, so savor it while you can.

1:56 AM

Monday, October 25, 2004  

Like a scene out of Captain Planet, the Red Sox outfielders raise their gloves as one as they walk off the field at the end of tonight's (last night's, according to the clock, but since when have college students ever counted days by midnights?) victory over the Cardinals. I imagine them shouting out, "Kapler! Muscle Power! Damon! Hair Power! Nixon! Mysterious White Hat Power! Red Sox Outfielders-- GO!" And then maybe there's a 'schZOOM' noise, and a flash of red light, and something cartoonishly impressive happens, but you know.

We won two at home. We won two games of the Freaking World Series. I really can't say much about this, because, personally speaking, I'm still getting over the fact that we came from 3 down to the Yankees and won it all. How did we do that? We were three outs away from being completely eliminated. And now we've won 6 games in a row in the postseason. It defies all logic and reason. Never have I been happier that we have a team of 'idiots', because you know that if they had been thinking about how many games they were down, they never would be where they are right now.

Also, if someone can explain to me how we can make 8 errors in two games and still win both of them, I would very much like to know. Manny needs to get his act together. I thought two errors on one guy last night was painful, but tonight Billy Mueller somehow managed to make 3 all on his own, which I think ties the record for most errors by one player in a playoffs game. Ouch, Mueller, ouch. He hit reasonably well, though, and we did win, but this is something that needs to be addressed if we want to have a chance in St. Louis.

I am exceedingly nervous about the upcoming games. I am not at all looking forward to watching our pitchers flail around with a bat at the plate, and I am even less likely to enjoy the sight of David Ortiz at first base. Urgh. It's making me vaguely ill just to think about it. The fact that we could have Doug Mientkiewicz at first (SO. FREAKING. GOOD.) and we're getting to see Ortiz in there (SO. UNLIKELY. TO MAKE. ANY GOOD PLAYS.) is truly upsetting. I realize that we really can't afford to lose Ortiz's mammoth bat, especially on the road, but that doesn't make it any easier to stomach.

I also have no idea what we're going to do with Millar, who usually plays first base... are we sticking him on the bench? Or are we putting him in the outfield? Because seeing Millar rolling around in the dirt after missing a ball is painful enough at first, and I imagine it would be substantially worse to see him lumbering around in the outfield. Don't get me wrong, I love Millar, he's a funny guy and this team wouldn't have half it's personality if he wasn't around, but that just makes his misdemeanors on defense that much more agonizing to watch.

Schilling, however... ah, Schilling. Will we ever stop loving this guy? Bleeding through his sock again, although this time it looked like it was a bit less blood. Hah, as though that makes a difference. He had cleverly figured that someone would be zooming in on his ankle at least a few times during the game, so he had written on his shoe 'K ALS', a reference to the charity he supports, which is trying to research/aid those afflicted by Lou Gehrig's disease (also known as ALS). During the postgame interviews he admitted that he had not thought he would be able to pitch when he got up during the morning, and that a nerve had been caught up with the stitches (!!), but when he got to the park he and the doctors dealt with it, and he was able to go out there tonight. He went 6 innings, one run, which wasn't earned.

*doffs cap*

Last night's heroes: Mark Bellhorn and Keith Foulke. Tonight's heroes: Curt Schilling and Orlando Cabrera. Maybe throw Foulke in there again. I honestly have no idea how Foulke is still pitching like he is... accurately, with strike-a-licious results, and night after night after night. I'd doff my cap again, but I already took it off. We're up 2-0 in the World Series. Someone pinch me, I'm dreaming. I actually might be at this point, I just finished a huge drawing with markers, and room is certainly filled with enough fumes to induce hallucinations.

Oh, yeah, and in case you didn't notice, a little something else happened this weekend. A little something called 'football'. A little something called 'every single one of the Feline Anarchist's teams won this weekend'.

The first image on the left there is Willie McGinest and Richard Seymour making a tackle on a Jet in today's 13-7 Patriots victory. This means that the Pats have now won 21 in a row, and finally have the official NFL record for most wins in a row (the NFL only recognizes regular season wins, and the 21 is including postseason wins). The Patriots, going into this game were 5-0. The Jets, going into this game, were 5-0. New York was slavering for a Jets win, as they viewed this game as potential payback for the Red Sox commanding defeat of the Yankees. Let us all take a moment of silence, in honor of the now dead past glories of New York.


Thank you, that was lovely. I wasn't sure if the Pats game was going to be on here, but to my delight it was. I went out to dinner with Leslie at halftime, sadly resigned to missing the rest of the game in favor of real food and Leslie's company. We ended up going to Good Time Charlie's, and, joy of joys, they had TVs! They were all showing the Packers/Cowboys game, but I asked a waiter if he could switch the TV nearest to me to the Pats game, and he obligingly did. Leslie was very nice about restricting herself to amused shakes of the head when I made suppressed squeals of glee during the game. The food was pretty good too.

The second image from the left is Sam Madison and Sammy Knight leaping about in joy, a sight not often seen this season. The Dolphins today beat the Rams, 31-14. Yes, you heard right. A Dolphins victory. This game was not on here, so I don't really have anything to say about it, except that I switched into my Miami Dolphins sweatshirt once I'd heard in a moment of pure glee. I may wear the Marino jersey tomorrow, simply because I finally can do so without feeling like a complete and utter loser.

The third image is Reggie Swinton, doing a backflip (!). You may or may not recall Braylon Edwards doing a backflip a couple of games ago when the Wolverines won. Is this a Michigan victory signal or something? Never have I seen such a state for victorious football backflips. The Lions beat the Giants 28-13. Once again, our defense showed up big. Very big. The much-vaunted Kurt Warner was rendered largely harmless. Tiki Barber gave us a few (OK, quite a few) scares, but in the end it didn't matter. Because, as opposed to last Sunday, Joey Harrington gave us a solid performance. We scored early, and that might have been our saving grace, but the game looked pretty good all around to me.

The last picture? That, my friends, is Michael Hart. Michigan beat a very tough Purdue team at Purdue on Saturday, 16-14, leaving us undefeated in the Big 10. Michael Hart rushed for over 200 yards. This is the second game in a row that he's rushed for over 200 yards. He's a little guy, at only 5'9 (at least, that's what the roster says. I think he might be shorter than that). Guess what else he is? I'll give you a hint: our starting quarterback, Chad Henne, also is one.

That's right. They're both true freshmen.

If that doesn't give you shivers, I don't know what will. Barring injuries, these guys are going to be around the entire time I'm here. We have some mighty fine football to look forward to here in Ann Arbor.

Anyhow, it's now nearly 3 am, and I have to be out of the dorm by 8 tomorrow. I still have some drawing homework to finish up. So I will depart, shaking with glee. Every. Single. One. Of my. Teams. Won. Every. Single. Game. That they played. This. Weekend. Happy? You have no idea.

edit: A couple of things I can't believe I forgot to mention. And yes, for those who are wondering, I am indeed awake, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready to go to drawing in a few minutes, on almost exactly two hours' sleep. Ah ha! Ha ha ha ha ha college you rock.

Let us be honest here-- who among us did not squeal in childish glee (or not so childish; I'm looking at you, ladies) when Jason Varitek made a particularly enthusiastic slide onto base and split the back of his pants open, and then proceeded to play the rest of the game with the same pants on. Mon capitaine, did you not notice a gentle breeze 'round your backbits? I know it's been said before, but I love Varitek. I love this team.

And hey, I know a lot of the readers of this thing are either Patriots fans or Lions fans (or even, god forbid, Dolphins fans). What will you all do with yourselves now that you've all started winnings (and Dolphins, I'm using the phrase loosely here)? If you're on the lookout for a team that is sure to guarantee plenty of heart attacks, why not set your sights on the Jacksonville Jaguars? The last 4 games that they've won have all been won by points gotten within the last 45 seconds of the game. Holy cats. I'm not sure how this is something that you can consistently do, but the Jags are apparently doing it. Insane.

That was all, I must now run to drawing, as it's nearly 8 in the am. *staggers off*

2:55 AM

Saturday, October 23, 2004  
It is officially Saturday.

Game 1 of the World Series is TONIGHT.

I just spent the past four or five hours watching ESPN, doodling crappy uniform designs for the new Washington team (formerly the Expos), and cruising around SoSH.

Tomorrow I need to do homework during the day (drawing finals, arrrgh! I need to load Maya somehow, arrgh!), watch the Michigan game at 3:30, and maybe do laundry. And vacuum. Definitely, definitely vacuum.

I have to remember to sleep. I have to remember to eat. I have to remember that fingernails do not count as meals.

I have to do all of this knowing full well that Tim Wakefield is pitching tonight, and Mirabelli will be catching, which is good, because lord knows Varitek was having trouble catching Wake's knuckleballs and we can't afford that tonight, but it's bad, because Mirabelli can catch but he's not nearly as sure a bat or as fast a runner as Varitek is, nor is he a team leader like Tek, and the Cardinals hitters are scary, and they can field the ball like woah, and and and. Man. I really need to vacuum.

I suppose I should go clear the stuff off my bed and sleep, or at least make a vague pretense of sleeping. I'm reasonably certain that I took an unintentional nap sometime around 4 or 5 pm today, which would partially explain why I am so twitchingly awake right now. Of course, the whole 'World Series' thing isn't helping matters. At all.

Oh, and in case anyone in the vast reaches of the Internet cares, here are the designs I worked up for the Washington team. Let me explain. As I see it, the team ought to be named the Senators. That's what they were back when DC originally had a baseball team, and I see no reason why the name shouldn't be reinstated. They've got to have classic jerseys, none of this bizarre 'tank top style' thing. They can't have garish colors or weird, stylized critter logos. Those things work OK in Florida or California, but not for a team playing out of Washington.

At least, that's how I see it.

Washington Senators home uniform.

Senators away uniform.

Senators logo.

Where in the world did that logo handwriting come from? That is so unlike my handwriting that it's scary. I have no idea how that came out of a pen attached to my hand.

*Wanders off to bed, shaking head in vague mystification*

2:34 AM

Friday, October 22, 2004  
OK, unreasoning glee over. I am still, of course, obscenely happy about this ALCS win. I did not see one single Yankees hat around campus today, and usually I see at least 25 by mid-afternoon. I had 'Go Sox!' yelled at me by perfect strangers. In an utterly bizarre move, as we sat in art lecture tonight waiting for the midterm tests to be passed out, the professor announced, "I see we have a Red Sox fan in the room. If Boston wins it all, maybe it's a sign for other Massachusetts things." Um. What? My entire row leaned forward in a comical fashion and hissed, "What's he talking about?" It took me a minute, but then I realized that he meant that if the Sox win the Series, it might be a sign that Kerry will win the presidency. Weird. I realize that I was sitting in the middle of the room, and I realize that I had a bright red Red Sox jersey on, but I still fail to see why the professor (to whom I have never personally spoken) brought it up in such a fashion.


I read the New York papers online, and they were like tiny little kittens put in front of a mirror for the first time. They had no idea what they were seeing, and it scared them, so they reacted by hissing and spitting and trying to puff up to make themselves look bigger, but in the end it did no good, because what scared them so much was nothing more than the reflection of their very own ugly mugs. I hope you enjoy this, New York. I hope you like seeing how it feels when you think you have the best team in the world, with the best players in the world, and they absolutely collapse on you.

So far as I can tell, from my limited readings on the subject, every Yankee player and every Yankee administrative member is up for evisceration by New York, with the exception of Derek Jeter. I suppose this makes sense in a way. The Yankees have a lot of marquis players, what with Jeter, A-Rod, Sheffield, Lofton, and Matsui-- but of those, only Jeter has been around for the long haul.

One of the big problems, inasmuch as the Yankee writers have acknowledged it, seems to be that this is not a team. It's just a bunch of overpaid guys being forced to play ball together. Now, if there's one thing that Boston most emphatically is, it's a cohesive team. But here's the thing: the Yankees are complaining that they're not a team because they have all these out-of-towners, all these new guys coming in this year.

Take a moment to think about that.

Then take a moment to consider David Ortiz, a pretty new addition to our team, roped in by Theo right along with a little closer called Keith Foulke. I dunno, I tend to think that even if you hadn't been following baseball all that closely you just might have heard of these guys. Just a smidgen? It might just be my imagination, but I think the clubhouse likes them just fine.

Or maybe you've heard of a couple of ballplayers by the names of Doug Mientkiewicz and Orlando Cabrera? These are the guys we got this summer as our end of the infamously brave deal that rode Nomar out of town, just in case you've forgotten. Maybe you've noticed little Cabby hitting, oh, a ball or two this season. Maybe making the occasional play for us. Maybe you've seen him partying with Pokey, or leaping up to hug pretty much any Sox player. Mientkie? Oh, you know, I'm pretty sure he's been doing a thing or two over there at first. Maybe you've noticed (as I have) that he always seems to be first in the celebratory pile when we win. Oh, and lest you forget how very new he is on this team, he was traded during a series against his Minnesota Twins this summer. One day he was playing against us. The next day he showed up at the same park and was playing for us.

Oh, and there's that other guy. A gentleman by the name of Curt Schilling. Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm relatively certain that he wasn't on this team last year. Gosh, another newcomer? And has he been jelling with this team? Wow, I dunno, this is a tough one. I'm just not sure the rest of the team likes having Schilling there. I'm not sure if Boston likes having him around, what with all the interacting he does with the fans and suchlike.

The point, of course, after I get that particular brand of sarcasm out of my system, is that I'm failing to see why trucking in a load of new blood should automatically make a dissonant team. We did it, and we're the most consonant (is that the antonym of dissonant? I'd look it up, but I'm too lazy) team in baseball right now. The Yankees did it, and it seems to have turned them into a mess of oil-and-water proportions. Why should this be? Is it some function of management? Do the Red Sox pick people they think will play well and will play well with others, while the Yankees only care about playing well alone? Is it a function of the team attitudes? Does Boston's free-and-easy style create a natural environment for bonding, while the Yankees' mantra of 'We are Professional, You Will Get a Crew Cut' stifles that sort of thing?

Is it just a matter of good luck versus bad luck?

I don't want to think that it comes down to luck. There are too many signs that say otherwise. The Sox pick up players who are good, but they tend to avoid the high-strung high rollers. OK, maybe Pedro's a bit... dramatic. But he's been around for a while, he's grandfathered in. Sure, we picked up a big gun this year in Schilling. But we knew from the beginning that Schilling wasn't pissy or stuck up. I guess there was no way to truly predict how he'd react to the players and how they'd react to him, but I think even someone as thick-skulled as a Michigan State fan could have told you that getting a star like Schilling is completely different from getting a 'star' like A-Rod. They were both big-name, big-money, high-profile pick ups, and there the similarity ends.

I mean, really, can you imagine A-Rod playing with a tendon flobbering around in his ankle? Because I can't. I can easily imagine him pulling a Nomar and whining endlessly about it, playing sub-par ball until he essentially forced himself to be traded, at which time his injury would suddenly not be as bad as he had been making it out to be. Then the team he had left would suddenly get better. Schilling stitched up his ankle, reached into a resevoir of heart and courage that the rest of us simply don't have, and pitched. Who would you rather have on your team? That's not luck, except in the sense that it's a damn good bit of luck that A-Rod ended up passing us by.

I'd like to think that the Red Sox management cares about different things than the Yankees management does. I like to think that we care about the team and the Yankees care about... cripes, I don't know. Stats? Themselves? I'm sorry, it's hard for me to think of terms like 'Yankees management' and 'emotions generally perceived as being associated with the heart, such as caring' in close company.

Enough of that, I'm just going to start running in speculative circles with this thing. It all comes down to the fact that we won, and they lost, and that's enough to make my week. Or at least until Saturday, when Game 1 of the World Series happens.

Speaking of which, I watched Game 7 of the NLCS tonight. You just know that if the Astros had won it, everyone would be talking Clemens and C*rse, so in that sense it's a bit of a relief. However. The Cards looked good tonight. Very good. Edmonds scares me. Rolen scares me. Pujols scares me. They can play small-ball. We haven't been to the World Series since 1986. They haven't been since 1987. I'm going to try to stave all this nervous energy off for at least a couple of days, until the game Saturday night. I want to ride this ALCS high for as long as I possibly can.

So, what did we learn in this startlingly and delightfully victorious series?

We learned that you can buy a player, but you can't buy a player with heart.

We learned that there truly are few things more beautiful than making 55,000 people from New York shut up.

We learned that you really are only as good as the sum of your parts.

We learned that A-Rod is a whiny little cheater, that Gary Sheffield is a trash-talking steroid abuser who can't even back up his own classlessly voiced claims, that Mariano Rivera is not untouchable, that if Kevin Brown melts down once he's probably going to melt down again.

We learned that you can never count Derek Lowe out of the season, that you can never count Johnny Damon out of the season, that you can never count Mark Bellhorn out of the season, that you can never count the Red Sox out of a game, and that you can never count the Red Sox out of a series, even if they have all the weight of history saying that they can't come back.

We learned that David Ortiz is a hero with a bat as big as his smile.

We learned the Curt Schilling is a hero with the power to make grown men cry and the power to strike a Nation silent if they weren't so busy singing his praises to anyone who will listen and many who would really rather not (as the now-earsore Michigan art school can attest to).

We learned what it's like to have that tantalizing taste of utter victory. We learned what it's like to beat the Yankees. We learned what it's like to win the ALCS against our hated rivals.

And it's a good feeling. I'd like to learn what it is to win the World Series, to erase the '1918' chant from the baseball lexicon, to truly put an end to this monstrous thing called the C*rse.

I hope all you Yankee fans are learning from your loss. Take a moment to reflect upon your situation. Wallow in the feeling. Now you know what it's like to be 1/200th of a Red Sox fan. Don't give us 'woe', don't give us 'we never should have lost'. You are not guaranteed a spot in the World Series just because you are the Yankees. Winning is not your god-given birthright. Welcome to the real baseball world, Yankees fans. I'd tell you to choke on it, but it seems as though you already did.

1:28 AM

Thursday, October 21, 2004  

No, you know what? Lemme just do this now. I. Love. This. Team.

Bronson Arroyo: Everyone's been saying you've got balls the size of Saturn. I refuse to speculate on this, but you were great for us in the regular season, and you kicked butt in an inning here or there when we needed you now. You wear your cornrows with a bizarre sort of pride, and you're standing tall among the veterans and holding your own. Dude. Thank you.

Mark Bellhorn: Do I even need to say it? You slumped like an invertebrate, tantalizing us with thoughts that you were done for the season. Then you go and get some dinky hits that revive us a little. Then you hit a three-run homer in what was the most important game of the season at that point. Then you ring one off the pole tonight, and crack something that looked suspiciously like a smile when you got back to the bench. Dude. Thank you.

This doesn't really need a caption, does it?

Orlando Cabrera: You crazy little man. It seemed like a trillion balls were hit your way tonight, and you just made play after play after play. It was beautiful to see. I don't think there's anyone in Boston right now who would want Nomar over you. You have a special dance with Pokey, you are one of us. Welcome to the Boston Red Sox, hope you enjoy the ride! Dude. Thank you.

Johnny Damon: Um. Yeah. Shut down by Yankee pitching for the whole frikking series? Did it matter? You're Johnny Damon! The Mountain Man! Jesus in the Outfield! 'Sexy Beast', according to my RA, with whom I so rarely agree about baseball. I guess you were saving it all for Game 7. Grand slam... then a home run. Dude. Thank you.

Alan Embree: Seeing you up there on that mound at the end of the Game 7, the gum or whatever it is bulging out your cheek and making you look for all the world like an anthropomorphic chipmunk... man. You know what? It made me feel good. In my mind I was saying, "Oh, look, it's Embree. We'll be alright now." That's how big you've been lately out of our 'pen (note my mind selectively forgetting that 19-8 game). Dude. Thank you.

Keith Foulke: Wow. You closed one game. Then... you closed another. And another. You just kept going, kept pitching, night after night. When you got that last, torturous out in Game 6, I think I died and was reborn. In a totally non-Jesus kind of way, that's Johnny's department. I just realized that could be a newspaper headline: Jesus Reborn, with a picture of Damon hitting the grand slam. Bets on whether the Herald uses it or not? Ah, this is about Foulke. You stuck it to 'em, buddy, and I can't believe you pitched as many balls as you did. Dude. Thank you.

Gabe Kapler: I know you haven't been playing a lot this series, but that is immaterial. You've been pretty good when you were in, you're swallowing your pride in place of team pride. This is what makes a great Red Sox player. You've also been unanimously declared the Hottest Jewish Sports Figure Ever, if that's something you'd like to contemplate. Dude. Thank you.

Curtis Leskanic: I admit, I had Doubts. But you ultimately put those to rest, pitching your probably quite tired heart out a couple of games ago, slogging through those long games and those extra innings with solid pitching that we would not have won without. You've fully embraced the hair and the beard of the modern-day Red Sox, and it warms my heart, it does. Dude. Thank you.

Derek Lowe: Holy shit. I'm supposed to be able to say something brief for Lowe? You FUCKING ROCKED. You know you're probably not going to be here next year (although now we kind of want you, heh), you know you weren't even supposed to be the starter in any game this series. You didn't care. You pitched a solid game before this to get us here, and you pitched a spectacular game tonight. Adversity leapt early and you buckled down to keep the Yanks down. You did what no one ever thought you would or could do. Dude. Thank you.

Watching Game 4 with the crew from Tufts. We saw Derek Lowe throw his first gusty game of the series, and what a game it was.

Pedro Martinez: The year certainly would have been a lot duller without you around, huh? Midgets, jheri curls, giving the Yankees a new and ultimately futile chant... ups and downs in your record following the ups and downs of your pitching arm. If this does indeed turn out to be your last season in Boston... well, we'll miss you. A lot. We're glad to have had you this year. Dude. Thank you.

Ramiro Mendoza: You were brought onto the playoffs roster because someone had a premonition that we'd need more pitching, and boy are we glad you ended up on there. If we'd had one less pitcher this series, we might not have won it. You may not have been the most sterling pitcher out there, and I may indeed have lambasted you mere entries ago, but tonight the world is beautiful and you were the extra arm that got us time to warm or rest the other arms that we needed to use. Dude. Thank you.

Doug Mientkiewicz: Doug, you are so frelling good in the field, it takes my breath away. I am inutterably glad that you did end up getting playing time in this series. I know you like to play, and I know you're used to playing, so seeing your graceful willingness to sit on the bench, seeing your selflessness and your intense desire to just see this team win, even when you didn't start the year with the Sox... we cannot thank you enough. Dude. Thank you.

Kevin Millar: You madly haired man, what would this team have been without you? Who would have rallied the troops? Who would run around hugging everyone within reach? Who would bring the Amish shovel beard back into style? Who would embrace and coddle and nurture this team's collective personality, bringing to light a style of play and cranial attire that has truly captured the essence of the team? Who would have dared to frost their tips? Dude. Thank you.

Doug Mirabelli: You are a freaking good catcher. This needs to be said. It's not everyone who can catch a knuckler. Any other team in Major League Baseball would love to have you. Even though you don't get top billing or constant playing time, you're on the Red Sox. We always know we can go to you if we have to. You have no idea how comforting that thought is to fans. Dude. Thank you.

Bill Mueller: How do you consistently put in such solid hitting? It seems like we can always count on you to get us a hit when we need it. They didn't name you a batting champ for nothing. And your play at third is so consistently good that we've almost started taking those laser throws across the infield for granted. Also, you're wicked hot. Just so you know. Dude. Thank you.

Mike Myers: Has there ever been such a bizarre pitcher for the Sox? And I mean that fondly. The fact that you make it possible for us to pitch situationally is still something I'm trying to wrap my brain around. I mean.. situational pitching? That's so weird for the Sox. And you make it all possible, with that crazy delivery of yours that always makes my eyes bulge. Dude. Thank you.

Trot Nixon: Thank the heavens for you in right field. Yeah. You've made numerous killer grabs in this series and before, diving all over the place and generally driving the collective heart rate of Red Sox Nation through the roof. I don't understand how you get all the white stuff on your hat, but if you keep fielding like you have been it could be cocaine for all I care. Keep up the hitting, too. Dude. Thank you.

David Ortiz: Um, yeah. Yeah, do I really have to say it? You are the Yankees' Daddy. You are our Big Papi. This team and this fanbase has nothing but respect and awe for you. You are amazing. Game after game after game after game, you keep us breathing and hoping and winning. Congrats on the MVP, I can't and won't say that you're the only one who deserved it on this team, but you TOTALLY deserved it in and of yourself. You fucking rock. Dude. Thank you.

This goes here because Ryan, my RA (the guy all the way on the right), is our big reverse mojo man. He comes in, bashes the Sox, gets us all riled up, and then the Sox make a beautiful play, usually a la Ortiz. This is right after we won the ALCS tonight. I am just a little bit crazed. Bobby is sweaty but it does not matter, because we won! And Ashley is only a sort-of fan, but no one can ignore these sorts of game.

Manny Ramirez: Man, Manny, where have you been these series? A dink hit here and there, a botched run or fielding play... ah, you know I'm just kidding. You're Manny. You're our Manny. There is not a chance in heaven or hell or morning studio classes (worse than hell, often) that we would have gotten to the postseason without your sturdy bat in the regular season. We simply would not be here without you. Dude. Thank you.

Pokey Reese: Pokey! Pokey! Pokey! You know the crowd loves you, and you know that the crowd are the fans. Need we say more? You totally stepped it up for us this year, coming in to play exactly when we needed you to do so. You caper about with Cabby, you leap acrobatically at 2nd, you get the fans a-chanting. Dude. Thank you.

Dave Roberts: I know I've said this a million times in here, but... I love watching you run. You are just so freaking fast and so good at stealing, and this is so very something that the Sox have not been able to do in the past and I'm just generally in awe. You come in when we need you, you do exactly what we need you to do, you twist and turn and race down the baselines and score us the runs when we desperately need the runs. Dude. Thank you.

Curt Schilling: Heh. Yeah. You. You just... you pitched. With your ankle literally stitched together to stabilize it, suffering what must be immense pain and risking your entire future career to get this team to a Game 7. You had 7 innings with one run and not one single walk. You... you... you beautiful pitching radio host bashing fan website following huge hearted man. We love you. More than words can accurately convey. Dude. Thank you.

Mike Timlin: Man, how much have you pitched recently? A whole frikking lot, I'd say. All those long games, all those innings... innings upon innings, games following right on the heels of previous games... and you were just one great big heart in our bullpen, giving us what we needed to get these things won. Seeing you wildly cheer on your teammates from the bullpen was a lovely moment. Dude. Thank you.

Jason Varitek: Please please please come back next year. You are a great catcher. You are an amazingly clutch batter. You have all that power to get the ball way out, and even if you don't you have the unexpected but immense speed to hustle the bases. You are the proud owner of one of the few unequivocably hot facial hair constructions on this team (Mueller has another one). You beat up A-Rod. Tek. You beat up A-Rod. Dude. Thank you.

Tim Wakefield: You've been on this team how long? 10 years? You have seen this team through thick and thin, you have pitched your heart out for us again and again over the long years. You provide us with a scary wildcard of a pitcher in our lineup, and when you're on watching that knuckler dance all over the plate is truly a beautiful sight. I hope we win it this year so you can finally be rewarded for all the blood, sweat, tears, and years that you've given to this team, this city, these fans. Dude. Thank you.

Everyone else on the team who's not currently on the playoffs roster... especially Youkilis, who was on it for the ALDS and was removed for the ALCS so that we could put on an extra pitcher: you guys also rock. We wouldn't be here without any of you. Enjoy the Series, because I certainly hope I'll be able to!

And I know it's not nearly as exciting as all the mass rioting going on in Boston right now, but here are the hardcore Boston fans who've been dealing with me all season thus far, amusing themselves by watching my madness and occasionally partaking of it themselves. I love the world right now, and I love my little enclave of Red Sox Nation version Midwest especially.

Me and Jun. He's not from Boston but he's a die-hard fan, and he knows all about the team and baseball in general, so it's great watching games with him. WE HAVE JUST WON THE ALCS so we're maybe a bit excited here. Maybe.

Brad, Beth, me, and George. Gingerly reassuring me when I was sobbing my sorry little heart out, carefully talking me down when I made as though I was going to rip my own head off, humoring me and dealing with my screaming and hugs when we finally won this thing. I LOVE YOU ALL. I LOVE THE WORLD. THE WORLD IS A LOVELY PLACE TODAY.

Yeah, I've got a midterm tomorrow. Guess I should go to sleep, but this needed to be done. It is not every day that the Feline Anarchist is filled with an all-consuming love. Today is that day. Today the Boston Red Sox beat the New York Yankees in Game 7 of the ALCS in Yankee Stadium. The score was 10-3. History was made, dreams were fulfilled, heroes were made, and legends were born. We're going to the World Series, I can wax lyrical if I wish.

And on that happy, happy note, I bid you all good night.

1:17 AM

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