I sit in my room on Sunday morning wondering if it all could have been different. Maybe if I hadn’t jinxed myself by praising Mother Nature for the glorious weather of the Saturdays previous. Maybe if I recycled properly every time. Maybe if I drove one of those electric cars. I probably use too much water when I brush my teeth. It’s possible I curse too much. It all goes around. Circular.
I guess it was too perfect: Pedro going for the Red Sox against the Indians on a Saturday afternoon at Fenway. I’ve never been to this sanctuary of baseball history. It was to be a glorious day at the old ballpark. I planned to write a meditative, heartfelt column about the healing qualities of a day with the national pastime.
Instead it rained all day, as it had for the last week. We had to give it a shot, though. Six hours of driving in fog and rain on Route 2. For a while, we followed a school bus that was BEING TOWED. Find me a slower-moving vehicle that is allowed on major roads. My CD player broke for part of the drive, but the radio picked us up.
Largely, however, we found salvation in the form of a large, kind man named Herb who runs Hungry Herb’s in Medford. In his trademark communicatory style, he greeted us as “six nice gentlemen” and called us “the good team.” Our fearless leader, Andrew Conley, the man who brought us into this magical world of steak tips and chicken tips, gave us the lowdown on what to try. And we did. And we took years off our collective lives. It was a beautiful sight.
By drowning our sorrows in bacon cheddar cheese fries, we staved off the disappointment we knew was not far away. All except Isaac “The” Dietzel, who staunchly believed that the game would be played despite the animals falling from the sky, and further expressed his feelings that something better would happen sometime in the future if Saturday’s game was to be called. Circular. Glancing over the autographed pictures of athletes, musicians, and politicians who had frequented Herb’s, I couldn’t help but think that this was to be the highlight of my day.
Holding on to a tiny piece of faith, stuffed to the brim, searching for a parking spot mere blocks away from Fenway and wondering if Burger King would really tow our car, we heard on the radio that the game had been officially postponed. None of us was surprised, but it still hurt. Limping back to Williamstown to pathetically check Matchmaker (that’s another column altogether), we were looking for solace, something positive and real that could be taken from traveling to the game that never happened.
Herb gave it to us as we left his restaurant. The man himself paused from singing oldies songs and left us with this: ”Hope you get to see Pedro…but if not tip some back and chase some babes. Either way you win.”
Couldn’t have said it better myself. It all goes around for Herb, the eternal optimist.