So I am SURE that there is a song title somewhere that I could use as a title for this post -- something about the conflict between beauty and exhaustion or magnificence and mundane. After the last several weeks, I'm just too exhausted to think.
We last left my blog with me defending Senator McCain's choice of Sarah Palin as his VP nominee. That support may have wavered after the Katie Couric interview, but I still support the GOP -- more so now since I don't get how it's somehow ok to say that one is still going to spend an additional fortune on new spending when the market freefalled last week and real middle class americans have either lost their savings or don't know if they're going to be able to get student loans for their kids for next year's college tuition -- remember, real middle class parents don't qualify for grants or even subsidized student loans; only less "wealthy" people get those types of aid. I am positively sickened by the lack of leadership by President Bush, both presidential candidates and a Congress that spends trillions of taxpayer dollars to give money for "children's wooden arrows" in a so-called rescue package that has no constitutional basis AND which fails to try an recoup the costs by getting the bonuses back from those who took them. Fiddling while Rome burns... that's where I am on the economic issues.
Instead of venting forever about that though, I want to turn a bit upbeat. DH and I celebrated our 20th anniversary on October 1st. Not only does he get kudos for putting up with me for 20 years, but he got me a GORGEOUS ring and we went to Niagara Falls for a long weekend. The majesty of those waterfalls and their awesome ability to change rock into a gorge astounded me. It's one thing to see pictures or videos -- QUITE another to see them up close and personal on the Maid of the Mist. We also went to this amazing conservatory where the Niagara Parks commission has created a rain forest type environment called the Butterfly Conservatory. THOUSANDS of butterflies, flying around, landing on you -- the experience was almost as mind-blowing for me as the Falls themselves. The weekend itself was crazy (I'm still recovering in many ways) because we went on a bus tour and it was HURRY, HURRY, HURRY the whole weekend. However... 9 hours each way on a bus...? Audiobooks on the iPod and the portable DVD player I had gotten for DH for anniversary...? I made a sock and a half for DH and am actually now within a few hours of finishing the second sock if only I could find five minutes to knit!!!!
Work has been miserable. I knew that this month was going to be high-intensity -- just a lot of deadlines all at once which happens sometimes but is still overwhelming -- but when I have already worked 30 hours in 2 days this week...? "Overwhelming" seems like a mild word. I also had to have this darn right knee drained again last week. It swelled up out of control for no reason on Tuesday night and my orthopod took one look and pulled out the big needle. Have to say that since the injury took place on July 18th, the knee thing is getting a LITTLE old at this point. DH is also taking two grad classes between now and the end of the month to get to his Master's plus Thirty (it's a teaching thing) by the end of March so he's out every Friday night and all day each Saturday and Sunday which leaves me on full time Mommy Duty but with other obligations and meetings and events that are sucking me dry emotionally and physically. Besides working full time, there isn't a single night this week where I don't have an evening commitment.
HOWEVER... speaking of commitments for this evening. Yes, I have a swim club board meeting. Yes, I am DVR'ing the debate. But tonight is ALL about the PHILLIES!!!!!!!!!!! I am known for talking about football -- let's not complain more in this post; the Eagles are KILLING me this year LOL -- but I have also been a Phils fan since the mid-70s. I remember so well the National League Championship series (plural) with the Dodgers in the late 1970s. I remember beating the Cardinals to make the World Series. I remember Tug McGraw throwing that final pitch in October of 1980 to beat the Kansas City Royals and the jubilance that WAS Philadelphia in the weeks and months that followed (then the Eagles made it TO the Super Bowl and beat Dallas to get there... 1980 was an AMAZING year). I was 16 at the time and remember every moment like it was yesterday.
I want that feeling again. I want to celebrate my wonderful region which has been denied a championship in any major sport since I was barely pregnant with my 24 year old daughter (76ers... 1983). After the Phillies made it to the World Series in 1993 and lost and then the strike came the next year, I just couldn't invest the time or emotion into watching every game as I had done in 1993. I had a law practice starting. I had three (then four, then five) kids. I went to a couple of games as late as 2000, but I only had so much sports emotion to give and, when forced to make a time choice, the Eagles have always been my first love. I took the position of "I am not following baseball" out of a sense of emotional protectionism. Of course, I have a son who lives, sleeps and eats sports so I always knew what was happening. Finally, last year, the Fightin' Phils won the NL East and I allowed myself to dream, once again, of that wonderful Fall of 1980 when I had two good knees, good friends and the Phils and the Eagles were kickin' ass and taking names. For a few brief days, I allowed myself to believe that I had a right to that feeling once more. Then the Phils got their butts whipped by the Rockies and the Eagles didn't make the playoffs -- I was SAD and swore to myself that I would be a fan, but that I would never again let myself BELIEVE.
But to be a Philly fan is to ALWAYS believe; to BE invincible, to know there is ALWAYS next year. Nationally, we are besmirched, belittled, laughed at and insulted. We're the people who threw snowballs at Santa Claus. When national commentators talk about our teams, we are almost ALWAYS placed 2nd to Dallas or the Cubs or anyone else who has a marginal claim at being better. We're the gang who doesn't shoot straight or the fans who are always the bridesmaids. Not believe????????????? Not in Philadelphia, my friends.
LET'S GO PHILLIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!