Saturday, June 02, 2012

The Joy of the Unknown Achievement

I didn't even plan on turning on the TV last night. When we got back from a meal at Bonnie's, one of my favorite Brooklyn haunts, I fiddled around in my room and considered dropping the needle on an old Graham Parker album. Oh, I'm so happy I didn't.

It's 12 hours later and I'm still emotional about Johan Santana throwing the first no hitter in Mets history. I was out of the apartment at 6:15 to get the papers, and picking up all four of them gave me goosebumps.  I watched the SNY Fast Forward and started choking up in the bottom of the ninth. I haven't had a baseball game I've watched on TV pack such a positive emotional wallop as this one in a long time. I've never teared up watching a Mets game before--and if my girlfriend hadn't been here, I might have cried like a little kid.

There's been so much negativity surrounding the Mets for such a long time that it honestly feels like a weight has been lifted off my fandom. It's tougher being a fan of teams like the Pirates and Royals, but they don't have the added specter of (except for a few years in the 80s) of being the second rate team in their own town. Add in some collapses, bad executive decisions and owners that were close to a crook and it's no wonder I honestly thought about not watching any games this year. A cooler, saner head prevailed and this year's team won me over (save the f-ing bullpen) weeks ago. So to have this happen to such a likable team makes it an even mightier event.

A few minutes after the last out I thought about a few people:

--How my friend and fellow Mets and Red Sox fan Erik and I watched in horror as the Red Sox collapsed in 2003, and how fitting it was that he was the first person I got a text from.

--How I couldn't wait to see how Greg Prince and Jason Fry at Faith and Fear in Flushing would document it. Those two have had a direct impact in my fandom growing since 2005.

--How amazing it is for Mets fans to be able to have two amazing fans-turned-broadcasters in Queens natives Gary Cohen and Howie Rose as our play-by-play announcers. Both were at their best tonight.

--How the old Magnetic Field crew (William, Lee, Abigail, Jen and Matt) had to be on cloud nine.

--And how unfair it was that Bob Murphy couldn't have been here to see them win the damn game.

What a magical night. It's a cliche, but I'll never forget it as long as I live.

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