im not usually a nervous man. but i was nervous for a few innings last night at Dodger Stadium.
sitting next the the razor sharp nicole cifani in the second row of the upper deck we had a perfect view of the cubs taking a 1-0 lead through 4 innings. i hadnt really eaten all day (bc nerves) and had only drank about 16 ounces of my 20 ounce beer so i thought it would be a good idea to put something in my stomach.
i also think the irresistible aroma of garlic fries were getting to her as well.
plus i wanted to meet up with todd and bob downing’s nephew who had bought my extra tickets higher up in the stands.
and as we were walking along the promenade past very long lines for refreshments the dodgers started rallying.
it got very loud. dodger fans hadn’t seen their team win a world series in 28 years. they werent there to crown the cubs. and in this city of champions usually their wishes come true.
as we waited to pay the dodgers tied the game up. walking around was usually what i did to help the Cubs get hits but alas it was now working for the home team? F word!
so i mixed things up a bit. Todd looked despondent and the peppy young Downing could probably use some newer friends near him so i suggested that nicole and i sit with them up behind the foul pole in left.
mama mia was that a rougher, different crowd from where we originally were. big, tough, fat mexican dudes, drunk from lots of things stood up and chanted for their team. some would eventually get escorted out by well-staffed security and LAPD. we saw tattooed latinas warned by security to take it easy on the profanity. we saw a huge but quiet hispanic gentleman pointed at by a grim faced guard who said, “GET DOWN HERE NOW!” he obliged and never returned to his seat.
there were a few Cub fans around us who cheered at a respectful level because lets face it, if there was going to be a fight it was going to happen in this far, high corner of the park. and lo, around the 7th inning, when things looked dire for the Dodgers who were making unforced errors and giving up walks and hits and homers to the young buck Cubs, a giant latino man with a white tshirt rushed towards another while trying to be separated by a well intentioned girlfriend or wife. angry looks exchanged but not blows. as kids with Yasiel Puig tshirts watched, fascinated. as Dodger fans seemed to be taking it out on themselves.
so disappointed. all of them. as this very well might be the last time they see their team.
not Ice Cube in the box seats, not Vin Scully who made a guest appearance in the press box, and not their heroes on the field could turn their scowls upsidedown.
by the 8th i wasnt nervous any more. the Cubs had extended their lead to 6 runs, every time there was a close play the replay went against the home team. and the fans slowly made their way to the exits.
and then, it was done. the Cubs had come back from the deficit with two resounding back to back wins at Chavez Ravine and the plane ride back to Chicago would certainly be livlier for the Cubs than the Dodgers. Now the teams face off on Saturday with the Dodgers putting their ace, Clayton Kershaw on the mound and the Cubs will counter with the MLB ERA leader, the mysterious and unassuming Kyle Hendricks for Game Six. It’ll be do or die for the Dodgers.
And a trip to the World Series if the Cubs can pull it off.
After a nite cap at Little Joy followed by some grub at Tacos Arizas, Nicole and I said good night but not before she invited me to her church on Sunday.
but i wanted to tell her, ive been at church all week.
and it was good.