Somewhere along the way, my hopefulness turned to sadness,
Somewhere along the way, my sadness turned to bitterness,
Somewhere along the way, my bitterness turned to anger,
Somewhere along the way, my anger turned to vengeance.
-Julian Casablancas, "Out of the Blue"
Starting a blog post with a song lyric (starting anything but a song with lyrics) is fucking lame. Having established that, this bummer of a baseball season is perfectly summed up in the first four lines of that song, so I guess I'll just have to live with myself.
I've been a Met fan my whole life, and I'll say I have twenty years of conscious memory about my team. I can say without a shadow of a doubt, no season was nearly as painful as the one that just ended in probably the worst fashion I could have imagined short of Johan Santana being fed into a wood chipper in some kind of kidnapping scheme gone awry.
Yankees/Phillies. It seemed more and more inevitable as the season went on, especially once the Giants and their playoff perfect rotation fell out of the race in the middle of September. Then the Rockies, Twins, Dodgers and Angels proved completely inconsequential competition and I had a doomsday scenario on my hands. For awhile I told myself I could ignore the World Series, except that, oh, I live in fucking New York City, so yeah, good luck with that. Then I earnestly hoped for something like a meteor or another great flood to prevent a champion from ever being crowned. As a back up plan, I swallowed my pride, decided a Phillies win was better than living in the middle of a two week Yankee victory buzz and followed along with my hands over my eyes as the doomsday scenario to end all doomsday scenarios slowly unfolded.
I watched tonight on my lunch break, reasoning that I'd hear about the game from people at my job even if I completely skipped it. It was a mistake though, because the game went from being a distraction to being a burden. It should never be a burden, sports, even when they totally suck. Still, the utter hopelessness of the situation dredged up a bunch of other shit and made the rest of my time at work a living Hell.
People had worse days than me today I know. My friend got her bike stolen and her car blew up, and some people don't have cars or homes or blogs. Even with that serenity prayer kind of philosophizing, I felt plenty bad as I walked through the (fortunately) quiet streets of Bushwick carrying an actual burden in my flat tire having bike, I told myself that no one felt worse than me. The Yankees won spectacularly, the Mets flamed out early and never stopped embarrassing themselves. Whatever joy I had gotten out of baseball was pretty far gone and I was still in thrall to it like some kind of worthless junkie,
When I wake up in the morning I'll feel a little better. I've got a day off and I can avoid collectible Daily News covers and twenty pages of special coverage stuffed in the middle of the Post. I'll get my bike fixed, do my laundry, get clean. Then I'll see if the Rangers are playing, because it's hockey season.
As for the possibility of congratulations:
I'm a bitter person and can't stand losing. Sports, politics, job hunts, love, writing projects; I don't handle these things very well when they go badly. I don't think I pretend to though and therefore, I'm not going to do the right thing, the mature thing and congratulate the Yankees and their fans. They can rot, as can the Phillies and their fans. The great part about not actually playing the game is that you don't need to be a good sport about it.