As we might have mentioned once or twice, we were at Busch Stadium to watch our beloved St. Louis Cardinals win their 10th World Series on Friday night. It is obviously a rare and lovely thing for anyone to have the opportunity to watch their team clinch a championship, and we were blessed by the experience.
Because all bloggers live in their parents' basements and just type in their underwear all day because they can't get a real media job, we took our mom and dad to the game; our father was 18 when the Cardinals won in 1967 and (gulp) 33 in 1982, so it was a rather intense experience for him and Mom as well. It was also cold; extremely cold; we actually found ourselves screaming at players to mush rather than run.
But it was something, obviously, that won't be forgotten, even after this series has long faded. (And judging by the ratings, and the general sluggish nature of the games, won't take long.) So here's our report from the front lines, being at Busch for the clinching of the World Championship. We'll be done after this; it's pretty much all left that we have to say.
Typically, we showed up outside Busch about four hours before gametime and parked our Chevy Cobalt, the road cannon of destruction, and ended up next to a van with a picture of Derek Jeter on it. Honestly, this World Series would have been so much better if it had the Yankees in it? Don't you agree? What's baseball without the Yankees? Derek Jeter is, after all, the face of baseball.
The Cardinals might have won the World Series, but, without question, they will always finish in last place in fan signs. Honestly, Cardinals fans come up with the dopiest goddamned signs. They're all made by the same people — we don't know who they are, and, frankly, we don't want to — and they're easily identifiable by that odd font we don't remember seeing anyplace else. We'd feel so much better if they just held up signs that said, "GO CARDS!" The most clever one was "LEAVE IT TO WEAVER." That was the most clever one.
While drinking at frat house enclave Paddy-O's before the game, we came across this gentleman, wearing only a pair of shorts and painted entirely in red. Falling back on one of our favorites jokes, we asked him if he had a skin condition. He answered in an oddly literal way: "Actually, yeah, I can't stay out in the sun too long or I peel real bad." We nodded, confused, and said we were referring to the fact that he was, you know, entirely red. "Oh, yeah, that too, man, yeah, ha ha ... GO CARDS!" Out of conversation, we just yelled the same thing back at him.
We had hoped the rainout of two days beforehand had scared Billy Ray Cyrus off his duties as singer of the national anthem, but, alas, 'twas not to be. Here's something you might not know about Billy Ray Cyrus: He cannot sing. We're not fans of country music, but we at least acknowledge some giants of the genre. Cyrus is proof that you can just toss a twang in here or there, and, for some people, that's enough. Honky Tonk Badonkadonk!
It is to the credit of Cardinals fans in our section that Cyrus was booed. We wouldn't call it "lustily booed," but it was too cold for anything involving lust. Oh, and we were with our parents.
If we might get sporty for a moment ... it's a good thing the Cardinals took care of this series early, because everyoen's been awfully quiet about just how much Albert Pujols struggled in this series. He had two opportunities to put Game 5 away and failed in both spots. If they had lost, he'd start getting those "Bonds-postseason-choker" labels that are always unfair but not really. It's telling that Pujols is probably the best player in baseball, and the leader of the team that won the World Series, and afterwards everyone was talking about David Eckstein, Adam Wainwright and Scott Rolen. We think this might stick in his mind a bit through the offseason, because that's just what Pujols does.
Anyway, long story short: Everything went perfect for the Cardinals all game — though if we ever see Chris Duncan in the outfield again, we're going to personally take his left hand off with a welding torch — and then Adam Wainwright struck out Brandon Inge in the top of the ninth inning to win the World Series. This caused people to go rather nuts.
It's extremely difficult to take pictures of fireworks, particularly when you're screaming at the top of your lungs and pouring beer on your own head. Trust us.
It's an odd thing to stay in the stands when your team wins the World Series at home, because after everyone's done jumping on top of each other and bonding homoerotically, they clear everything out, drive a truck on the field, set up a podium and hand the microphone to Bud Selig. During this whole time, you're yelling as loud as you can, and yelling is an activity that requires considerable effort. By the time Bud Selig starts talking, it can be difficult to hang on to one's enthusiasm. It's almost as if, we dunno, that guy has a special ability to suck the life out of things.
Fortunately, you can always leave the stands, run out on the concourse and do a public imitation of a blowup doll.
And then we took to the streets, where, sadly, no cars were burning. There were just a few brave souls climbing up the Stan Musial statue, and some guy who vowed to do a pushup for everyone one of the Cardinals' wins this season. (There weren't that many, mercifully.) We did try to drink that big bottle of Jager, though.
Look, even Eckstein came outside for the party!
The party went on pretty much all night; when we finally made it back to a computer to do the Holy Freaking Crap post, it was 5 a.m. CT. (We love that photo of Eckstein more than anything, by the way, not least of which because of the picture of Jayson Stark in the background, quietly computing which World Series MVPs of the last 25 years have been under six feet tall and slugging tequila directly after the clinching game.) The rest of the weekend was pretty much the same. The Cardinals won the World Series, and we were there, and everything else, we were just zonked and checked out from. We're sorry we can't give you more here; we just don't believe it happened, and we're not gonna question it ... we're just going to bathe in it and never forget it. And — we promise — we're gonna stop talking about it now.