I’ll be honest, I haven’t been as into this Phillies team as I have been in the past. They’re just so dominant, and had the division on lockdown for so long, that their games became merely a coronation for a division title starting in, oh, around May. Yeah, I still keep an eye on them every game, but let’s face it: in September of 2008, we hung on every single Phillies pitch, then listened to the Mets game so we could hang on their every single pitch. This September, we kept checking our watches to see how many more days until October began.
But now, finally, we can return to that mad, mad part of our brain where reason flies out the window and subsequently we find out greatest happiness. We can go back to screaming at our televisions and hugging strangers and disregarding what medical literature says about too much alcohol consumption. We can try to explain why Charlie put Pence in the 3-hole to a cabdriver from West Africa who could really care less, but is too polite to say so. We can turn our hat backwards when the count goes to 3-2 because the last time we did that Howard got a hit, though if he strikes out this time it’s because we should have never put that damn hat on backwards again. We’ll put reason on the backburner and believe in the type of voodoo that no sane person in a civilized country should possibly believe in and second guess Charlie and then when his hunch pays off apologize for screaming at him, although he doesn’t know that we exist. We’ll explain to our wives that we would never leave them for Cliff Lee, but that if he offered to elope with us we would be foolish if we didn’t at least consider it. It’s playoff baseball, and instead of hiding our mental madness from our friends and family, we have an excuse to bask in it. We are in Philadelphia. It is 2011. Roy Halladay is on the hill. The beer is cold. Life is good.