Can’t Watch…Must Watch…Can’t Watch

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(This little dude is feeling my pain)

I did not watch this one. I couldn’t do it. After what they put me through on Sunday, I needed to take a small break from all things Red Sox just to, I don’t know, clear my head. Remember that there are other, more important things in life. Get a grip. Plus, there was football on.

I got home from work and went promptly to the laundromat since the small mountain of dirty clothes in my room was threatening to spill over onto the bed and suffocate me in my sleep.

“Gonna do laundry,” I said to myself, “Gonna come home, eat dinner. Not watch the game.”

“Are you watching the game tonight?” Colleen asked me.

“Football,” I said, “There’s football on at nine.”

“You’re not watching the Red Sox?”

“Can’t do it tonight,” I replied, “I kind of scared myself with how mad I was at them yesterday. I think I need a break.”

Colleen eyed me warily as she has learned to do in a remarkably short time. “Probably not a bad idea.”

I went to the laundromat. Marianne and I did laundry. I happened to look up at the clock at 7ish.

“Game time,” I said, “Not that I’m watching.”

“Me either,” Marianne shrugged, “Can’t do it tonight after yesterday.”

“Exactly.”

I went home. I sat down to do some work. I turned on the ESPN Monday Night Football pregame show and saw there’d been some sort of kerfuffle, of “donneybrook” if you’re Stuart Scott between the Falcons and the Eagles resulting in Jeremiah Trotter and Kevin Mathis being ejected from the game. At one point, both teams converged at mid-field, separated by a line of referees and began jumping up and down. It was eerily reminiscent of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” video. I was waiting for the ref to throw down a silver glove.

“The hell?” I wondered aloud.

Furious emails began to fly between Mer in Texas (and representative Philly fan), Sam in Michigan and Beth and myself here in Massachusetts as the new season of Four Chicks Talk Football kicked off. We all began to worry about Mer. Especially when, during the first quarter, Michael Vick showboated himself into the endzone to give Atlanta a 7-0 lead. “I think I just saw a mushroom cloud from Texas,” Beth wrote.

I may also have checked the Sox score. You know, once. But I did not watch!

Football kept happening and the emails kept flying. Colleen, who has Warrick Dunn on her fantasy team walked past, “What’s the score?” she asked me.

“Up 5-0 in the 7th,” I said.

She looked at me strangely.

“Oh,” I said sheepishly, “14-0 Atlanta. I’m not watching the Sox game.”

“Uh huh, sure you’re not.”

And really, I wasn’t. Good thing too. I may have checked the score again, you know, maybe, sometime during the 8th inning and squinted when the little Gameday box said 5-5. I may also have screamed, “Fuck!” causing Colleen to cower in her room in fear.

I may then have signed on to IM and demanded that Annette tell me that Keith Foulke did not just blow a 5-0 8th inning lead. “That was only 2/5 Foulke’s fault,” Annette told me. “The rest of the blame rests squarely on the shoulders of Mike ‘It’s not MY ERA’ Timlin.”

I may have screamed “Fuck!” again. Maybe.

At that point, I really did refuse to check the score again. I refused to flip channels lest the Sox end up on the business end of a walkoff. My coffee table cowered in fear.

“This one’s going to extras!” Annette said.

“Oy,” I responded.

All the while, I kept watching football. Annette and I discussed Mer’s likely mental state and commiserated as we have been there before ourselves. Shortly before midnight, I read, “DAVID ORTIZZZZZZZZ!”

“Home run?” I asked, not daring to hope.

“YES!” Annette told me.

“Who’s pitching? Still Papelbon?”

“YES!” Annette said, “And he has been nails. Nails, I tell you!”

A few minutes later, he nailed it down, so to speak.

“WE WIN!”

“Thank Christ,” I said, “I really, really don’t think I could have taken an extra inning loss.”

“Papelbon gets his first major league win! Three innings! One baserunner! No hits! NO HITS! And Ortiz!”

“How there is not a solid gold statue of that man in Government Center, I’ll never know,” I said.

“There will be,” Annette responded, “And it will be twenty feet tall. And somehow, that won’t seem tall enough.”

“Gotta be fifty at least,” I said, “Damn, David Ortiz. Just…damn.”

So tonight, I might watch the game. You know, maybe. If I don’t have anything else to do.

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