It rained in Virginia this week. That kind of overflowing, cold, pouring rain that makes you stop saying, “Well, we need the rain,” because, not like this. And, now there’s mud on my pants and I have to change. That sort of rain.
So, when I grabbed the basket of massage linens and began to tote them into our basement early Wednesday morning, where the washer and dryer and friendly skinks, lizards, and wolf spiders live, I was especially careful.
Because our basement is a cellar that you enter from outside, pulling up wooden dormer doors, and going down cement steps.
If it’s raining, the steps get wet.
Did I mention that I was very careful?
Sometimes you fall anyway.
Really, that’s exactly what I did.
(Except, I wasn’t wearing catcher’s gear and there was no foul ball. So not exactly “exactly”.)
I could still be lying there in a puddle of my own carefulness. Instead, I’m just banged up.
(Caleb was fine, too, by the way.)
When you fall, it plays out in slow motion. So, in those milliseconds of disaster I saw my career crumbling into a heap of broken bones.
Actually, this is what I saw when I fell.
Wait, no … THIS is what I saw when I fell.
I’m told I could have killed myself, but really, I was just trying not to break my arm.
Once I landed on the cement – my left elbow and low back took the worst of it, for those of you who are injury-curious – and determined I was not dead, I wrote a poem.
You might remember this poem from earlier this season when the Orioles were having a bad spell.
It’s a pretty good poem.
It’s also versatile. Just change the “s” to an “f” and you have a brand new poem which celebrates rain and cement steps and nearly, but not quite, killing oneself.
Please feel free to use it whenever you need it.
I took photos of my bruises for you. They are ugly, but not quite ugly enough. I’m looking for pity here, not another lecture about how one needs to be careful when cement steps are covered in rain. The photos are more like, “Really? I thought it would have been a lot worse than that.” You’d be disappointed. They don’t help my case at all. So, nevermind.
But, my very bad, but unbroken, morning, got very, very badder as the Baltimore Orioles were swept out of the playoffs that afternoon by the pesky Kansas City Royals.
The cement steps couldn’t break my bones.
But, baseball broke my heart.
(I’ve been waiting all week to write that for you.)
Let’s cover a few post-season and World Series topics …
#1) The Kansas City Royals won, fair and square. Congratulations! You swept two of the best teams in baseball to make your way to your first World Series since 1985. That’s pretty awesome.
Whining by Orioles fans who think it’s unfair that there’s a wild card team even in the mix, because wild cards often reflect currently “hot” teams, rather than “consistently consistent” teams, were unusually quiet when the Orioles were the wild card team in 2012.
The Royals will be tough to beat … but …
#2) Go Giants.
Because, they’re almost a home team for Virginia and Orioles fans.
Big Hero of Game 5 Michael Morse? Former Oriole (and former National).
Bigger Hero of Game 5, Travis Ishikawa? Former Oriole (by way of the AAA Norfolk, Virginia Tides).
(That home run call? That’s Giants radio broadcaster, Jon Miller – beloved, former Orioles broadcaster.)
Giants reliable, reliever Javier Lopez? Grew up in Fairfax, Virginia; played for the University of Virginia.
The Richmond Flying Squirrels (Giants AA team), and just an hour down the road from here, has included Brandon Belt, Brandon Crawford, Matt Duffy, Joe Panik, and Ryan Vogelsong (rehab, 2013).
And, Giants Manager Bruce Bochy? He played for the AAA Tides when they were in Tidewater, Virginia (and a Mets farm club) back in 1981-1982.
It’s not my preferred orange and black, but it will have to do.
#3) And, anyway, those ill-mannered Royals are dead to me.
Oh, one last thing …
After the Orioles loss, Casey Karp – Mariners fan, cat person, and author of the especially fine Koi Scribblings blog (really, check it out) – arranged for me to drown my baseball sorrows in ice cream.
I had plenty to choose from.
But, who can choose just one?
When one deserves two?
I’m feeling better already.
Thank you, Casey.
The Orioles will win the World Series in 2015.