Thursday, June 15, 2006

So Many Ways To Be Annihilated



Volcanoes. Tsunamis. Space aliens. Global warming. Thermonuclear war. Rain delays sure are fun.

Before the next disaster at the ballpark tonight, somehow I landed on the Sci-Fi channel for a heaping dose of apocalypse. “The Day After,” an eschatological classic from 1983, started about an hour before tonight’s telecast, and I have to admit, I was tempted to skip the game and wax nostalgic about the good old Cold War’s last days.

What an interesting time! Ronnie Reagan was rattling his old bones and sword at the crumbling Evil Empire. Anita Bryant was pitching orange juice and condemning gay people to hell. Jerry Falwell was in his heyday, sent to Earth as in a fairytale to straighten the rest of us heathens out. The nuclear arsenal was cocked and ready to go. And the Phillies made it to the World Series for the second time in four years.

Then the game started midway through the movie and all hell broke loose with as much immediacy as Mutually Assured Destruction – except in this case, only one side got bombed. Brett Myers, The Man Who Would Be Ace, melted down as quickly as you can say “Three Mile Island,” and the Mets were up 6-0. Chollie pulled our once and future king after 2 2/3 innings. Myers’ ERA in his last two starts is 17.46.

At that point, I asked myself what would be a better use of my masochistic time: Agonize with Jason Robards over the nuclear winter and mentally help him pick his radiation scabs or continue to flog myself with the cat o’ nine tails Comcast was providing courtesy of Team Vomit? The rain delay made that decision for me.

I have to say the movie gave me some irradiated food for thought. Here it was, 1983, and the characters’ hometown team, the Kansas City Royals, had yet to win a World Series. Even the nuked Philly fans could say they saw the Fightins’ win one before they croaked their untimely death back then. At least that’s what I thought the first time I saw the flick – that and how easy it would be to fuck all the surviving women possible, considering we were all going to die anyway and nobody would be scared off by Falwell anymore. Yee-hah!

The movie ended, and the rain delay continued for an hour, so I watched the next feature, “Countdown to Doomsday.” Suffice it to say Matt Lauer was the host of the alleged documentary detailing all the various ways humanity can be annihilated. Of course, there was always death by mediocre baseball, and for that, I thankfully clicked back to the game and gainfully accepted the rest of tonight’s punishment, a 9-3 shellacking at the hands of the hated Mutts, fully resplendent in their mastery of Team Schizo at their second home in Philly.

The usual suspects emerged. Suffering flashbacks from his previous seasons of immaturity, Myers stormed off the mound repeatedly after disagreeing with the nitpicking umpire’s calls on balls and strikes. His agitation had to be egged along by the geometrically-increasing incompetence of Dingdong David Bell in the field, who racked up another run-scoring error tonight. And then there was our beloved Gold-Gloved rightfielder, the legendary Corky Abreu, who misplayed two more balls over his head, an ongoing deficiency his apologists write off as a mere annoyance, considering his potent offensive skills. Ironically, he was charged with his first error tonight; it seems he’s committed a dozen or more, and no doubt has benefited from charitable scoring. His glove, if golden, is a cake of cement.

And so it goes for the bumbling Phils, a ragtag bunch of nouveau rich n’er-do-wells who can rest assured that while Doomsday may not come courtesy of the Soviet Union, it’s more likely to happen when they are shipped to an underfunded, hopelessly lost baseball outpost like Kansas City, where those vacant missile silos can be rented as domiciles and make for impenetrable protection against hostile fans.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a season it's turning out to be, eh? First place seems further over the horizon than the sun at midnight in Philly. And who but the fucking Mets is holding it. Damn, I'd rather see Atlanta go for a 15th straight division title but it's looking less and less likely. Do you remember that 13 game run the Phillies had this year? Do ya? Seems like a long time ago and another team doing it. What a bunch of losers we have for a baseball team.

15/6/06 1:38 AM  

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