Thoughts during what I hope are not the last three innings of the season. But if they are the last, this won’t feel like 84 or 89 or 98 or 03.
I’m 43 and all that means is that
Foul by 15 feet
I’m a little older which doesn’t mean I finally realize *it’s just a game.* I’ve always known that.
If tonight is the end of the season, or even if we go all the way, the end will mean the one thing I have learned the end of baseball season means: The end of summer.
Miguel’s birthday is tomorrow. On 10/22, 2006, we spent the night in the hospital with him in a bundle and Jennifer, his birth mom, recovering in a squeaky uncomfortable bed. So many stories live in that night.
Schwarber gets the walk. The Cubs desperately need a long ball.
But one of the stories is that Detroit was playing for their league.
Inning over. Cubs don’t score. We move to inning seven.
Michael is from Detroit. We considered Detroit as a name for our hypothetical son. A girl would have been Quetzal—a beautiful bird and an awesome scrabble word. It all happened so fast. We chose Miguel Burton Kilgore. Jennifer was surprised.
We found out that we had been picked by Jennifer and Robert as prospective birth parents when the baby was due in two weeks. Before we could meet, Jennifer went into labor.
Murphy just missed another home run but at least it was not a home run. Mets outhitting the Cubs 9-4. Just one of them things (ron) This inning belongs to Strop. The wind is still blowing out. Strop really needs a strike out here
Jennifer had wanted us to be there, but she went into labor early before we could meet. The social worker asked us to wait for the call. What the hell do you bring to a woman who is having a baby and may or may not want to ask another family to be his parents, and who may or may not want us to be those people.
Our garden was already asleep. I printed out pictures of flowers and secured them to pipe cleaners
Now the bags are loaded. Basio is going to the mound. Strop trying to keep the Cubs within five (why does ron say strope and pat strop—who is correct?)
We brought Jennifer a bouquet of photo flowers, printed on the high quality setting. It’s a long but amazing story, those next 48 hours.
I don’t remember what happened with Detroit. Michael probably does. But that night, in a small room, baseball was on, and Jennifer showed us how to feed and change Miguel. She explained the sludge and assured us that not all diapers would be like that. “It’s Ok, I didn’t know what I was doing with my first child either.”
Mets don’t score. They lead 6-1. Eddie Vetter for the stretch. “We want more baseball!!!”
Hey, he sounds good. Fuck, now I am going to start crying. Come back and win the game!!!! Because that circles to the point. The end of baseball means the end of summer.
One of the great things about having an October baby is that you get to cuddle him and swaddle him and keep him off cold floors and then hell yeah April comes and baseball is back and your baby has left the 4th trimester and wow—that first summer was amazing.
It is easy for me to say this because I was not pregnant in summer. I can’t imagine being pregnant, let alone in late summer.
Cubs with only 4 hits in the game. They’ve managed only 5 hits in each of their first three games.
(writers block while the cubs go quietly 1-2-3)
I don’t want to back space, because we can’t back space life. And while writing is not life and baseball is not life, we don’t backspace baseball so I won’t backspace this.
But I paused because I want to explain that I had no sadness, no hint of a sniffle, no anything that has a whiff of a no about not carrying a child. But how do you say that? That will have to do.
If the Cubs lose tonight, I will have no sadness except for the end of summer and also for the feelings of the players. For the past 8 months, I have enjoyed this team. I have dragged my radio around the house and garden during puttering times. When I left my radio in the rain, I bought another (returned because it could not grab 780am) and another (ditto) and finally went online and did a bunch of research and ordered something that can actually grab the station. WTF? I’m missing WGN and 720.
Access to the Cubs is one of the reasons I was a south side Cubs fan. Om the radio, on the teevee, latch key kid. Lee Smith, shadow line. Jodee, Jodee Davis! My favorite animal was the penguin after Ron Cey. I sent him a fan letter and got a “signed” photo back.
I wrote a cheesy book of poems the fall of Steve Garvey, illustrated with clippings I had kept under the bed. When I taught grade seven writing, I used to trot the collection out to encourage, uh, expression and lack of self-censorship.
Television showing fans with blank stares and confusion.
Easy for me to say, chin up. . .
Daniel Murphy has just hit a home run. Has just set a record. Mets have opened up a commanding 8-1 lead. I can’t believe it.
I don’t believe in much except for the amazing story of how Miguel came into our lives, but maybe this series was not meant to be about the Cubs. Maybe it was meant to be about Daniel Murphy.
And guess what, if we lose tonight, I will root for the Mets. Summer will be over, and I probably won’t watch (need to catch up on garden work), but my philosophy is that you keep the love in the family. I am happy for the White Sox unless they play us. Hands up for the Midwest over the coasts. And for the love of all things elegant, National League forever. Screw the Yankees, et al (except the White Sox)!
Soler has the leadoff double. Cubs have yet to have a big inning in this series.
Long home run for Kris Bryant. Cubs now trail by a score of 8-3.
(pee break and husband convo interlude)
Bottom of the ninth. Not feeling optimistic about the game. Less than five months until spring training.
I hope you get a standing ovation. I hope you take the field. Let the Mets have their moment, but not without yours.
Left handed pitcher, right handed batter.
Pat talking about all the great teams that did not make it this far.
2-2, inside to Montero.
Joe Maddon is in the first year of a five year agreement. A lot of tremendous young players.
Pat is using contorted math to imagine a win.
Fowler at the plate. Montero will not be held. Fowler trying to give it a good at bat, right up until the end. Soler on deck. High ball three. Dexter really battling, trying to keep the Cubs going. No one wants to be the last out. Fowler really grinding. Fouled away again.
Delayed fucking call. And the New York Mets win the National League Pennant. And it’s stupid, but I am crying. I know it’s just a game.