Yesterday I had some car problems. I was backing out of a parking spot and just smashed the fuck into a tree. When it happened I was hoping that it was just one of those glass-breaking sound effects on the radio station I was listening too. I knew it wasn't when I glanced in my rear-view mirror and I saw what looked to be a tree assfucking the back of my SUV. Two of my back windows shattered - Glass EVERYWHERE. But you know what?
I had a smile on my face while I cut up my hands clearing glass from my backseats. I had a smile on my face while I drove around with duct taped garbage bags covering the huge holes that I created. I had a smile on my face while I wrote a $400 check to the autoshop where I got the windows replaced.
I know its very unblogg-like, but I need to share with you how happy I am that the Houston Astros are in the World Series. My love for that team and its success has me beaming. An angry panther could leap at me and attack my face and I wouldn't be upset ("You are one silly cat!"). And its because one thought is running through my head: My God do I love the Houston Astros.
And I always have. I remember being 5 years old and listening to night games on this old dial radio that my dad would leave on in my room. I'd fall asleep praying for Terry Puhl and Kevin Bass to mount a 7th inning rally. I remember my face getting red when someone at school would say "Last-ros lost again last night". I remember wearing a sweater in 103 degree heat, wiring a pair of headphones up my sleeve so I could listen to an Astros day game during Algebra class. (For nerds who actually paid attention in class: It looks like you're resting your head on your hand when really you just slipped in an earpiece).
In the last United States presidential election I even voted for an Astros back-up catcher. Let Tony Do More in 2004! Honest to God, I did. If that doesn't make me diehard I don't know what will.
Being an Astros fan has never been sexy. It's been mean, ugly, and heartbreaking. It's 2nd place. It's being swept in the playoffs. It's watching a mistake that turns into a disaster that turns into a pocket of sadness that sits right below your heart. It's leaving the stadium and walking to your car with your lips tightly pressed together and your head down.
But those memories are (thankfully) being replaced.
Replaced with being on the right side of an 18-inning classic. Fist pumps and high fives instead of wide eyes and a quiet locker room. Watching Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte, two Texas boys, pitch their hearts out for this great city. Refusing to fold after a homerun that still hasn't landed. Tearing up when Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell embraced after the final out. Warriors like Brad Ausmus, Roy Oswalt, Dan Wheeler, and Chad Qualls covered in champaigne.
It's all so perfect because they deserve it. The city deserves it. And not to be selfish, but I deserve it.
Part of the happiness is that I've experienced this post-season with my family. We've been lucky enough to go to a Roy-O W, the incredible 18-inning game, and the game where Pujols put our dreams on hold for two days. It's especially fun to experience this with my dad, who's the only guy I know who loves baseball more than I do. We're making memories that I will never forget.
I know Chicago has suffered too. Maybe even more than us. Hell, the last time they won a championship 'Oregon Trail' wasn't a computer game. It was a dirt road to fuckin Oregon. (Start out as a banker. Stop for 3 days if Sally gets bit by a rattlesnake. Don't trade wagon parts for sets of clothes.)
But this is ours. I don't know how I know. But I do. I guess I just feel like smiling. And I have this feeling that I will be for a long time.