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Sultans of swat

You get a shiver in the dark
It’s been raining in the park but meantime
South of the river you stop and you hold everything.

So here’s what I said last year at this time. Kinda sucks to use up all the best words early; but I burn with a fierce bright joy in this moment, realizing that I was right, so very right, simply off by a year in the one small detail that matters most of all.

I think they will win tomorrow. I think Pedro will find the hard core of anger at his center that he uses to pitch his very best games. I think Roger will falter in the final game of his career, as perverse payback for 1986. I think the heart of the Red Sox batting order — a heart which is, make no mistake, nine men large — has remembered how to bat. I think we’ll see a classic, and I think that when the dust clears the Red Sox will stand in the midst of the enemy, victorious.

But if the worst happens, I know that I will still be telling stories of this season decades from now. The year I came back to Boston, the Red Sox wrote a story to remember. I thank them.

What arrogance! To assume the story would only last a year. We were young then, and callow.

And a crowd of young boys they’re fooling around in the corner
Drunk and dressed in their best brown baggies and their platform soles

It’s odd. Somehow it seems as though the Yankees and the Red Sox should meet next year in the World Series. It feels wrong that this is impossible. The next few days, this coming week? I find myself incapable of understanding it. Eighteen years ago, I was sitting in a hotel room in London watching the BBC recap show. They’d go an hour, showing only the most important clips from the game. It was game six. There were twenty minutes left in the hour. I kept telling myself that the last ten minutes would be the celebration after the victory.

And Harry doesn’t mind if he doesn’t make the scene
He’s got a daytime job, he’s doing alright
He can play honky tonk just like anything
Saving it up for Friday night

I don’t know how to react to seeing the Red Sox in the World Series. I have no earthly idea. But I know how to celebrate what they’ve just done.

And then the man he steps right up to the microphone
And says at last just as the time bell rings
“Thank you, good night, now it’s time to go home,”
And he makes it fast with one more thing
“We are the Sultans —
“We are the Sultans of Swing.”

One Comment

  1. The best part about last night’s game: Seeing the Yankees suffer a throat-crushing defeat. Yes, I’m a lifetime Royals fan, a Mariners fan since I moved up to the Northwest, and a Red Sox fan for more than 20 years (ever since pulling out a Wade Boggs r…

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