It's a weird Opening Day. The minor leagues have already opened. There have been three other Opening Days, which probably means I can stop capitalizing it. And here come the Giants, opening on a … Friday night? What is this nonsense? I blame Arizona for not having the same holidays and daylight saving time and normal people.
It's a different kind of feeling, too. The last Opening Day was too. My attempt to capture what previous Opening Days felt like:
Hope. The eternal hope that comes with the new spring. This might be it; this might be the year that everything falls into place. The odds are long. The road daunting. But can you smell the freshly cut grass? Can you hear the infield chatter, the buzz of the crowd, the vendors hawking their wares? The simple truth is that every team is 0-0. Every team is just a few months away from winning the World Series. This is the National Pastime. This is our soul's pastime.
woooooooooo uunggggh oh yeah whooooo hooooooo
/fist bump /chest bump
whoooooaarrrrgh yeah buddy toss me one of those this is the best team every ALL THE WAY ALL THE WAY
/cracks open beer
wuzzzzzup cody ross yeah yeah yeah
/snorts line made from chopped-up thong and beard trimmings
oh man this is the best day of my liiiiiife OPENING DAY
I don't know about you, but I wasn't sure how I was going to react to 2011. Would the same passion be there? It felt like the release was an inextricable part of the 2010 magic. In every single season of San Francisco baseball, the season ended on a sour note. Either the Giants didn't even make the playoffs, or something awful happened in the playoffs. And then … release. Rapture. Closure.
Closure? As in, that championship itch was scratched forever? Didn't seem plausible, but then that was the point. I had no idea how the season would feel. Had no idea if there was going to be a sunny, "we'll always have 2010!" sheen over the season, even if I tried to shoo it away.
Conclusion: Man, how it sucked to watch other teams in the playoffs. Boy, how jealous I was to watch the Cardinals and their Game 6 magic. Lo, how I want the Giants to get back. Together. To get back together. To the playoffs, in case that wasn't clear. I want to get back to the playoffs together with the Giants. Yeah. Just came up with that. Thinking I should make that the tagline of the site.
The mystery was solved. I could go for a Giants championship every year. It would always be awesome. Every year would feel just as good. And as the Cubs and Indians of the world glowered at us, resentful of the yearly dominance shown by our chosen team, we'd laugh, spittle flying from our mouths. The spittle would be championship spittle. I'd probably feel that they should be honored to be showered with such golden, trophy-scented spittle. They should catch some in their hats, just to get some idea of what it's like. And then I'd ignore them to focus on the Giants winning every championship for the rest of baseball.
I could dig that.
Opening Day used to be about what-ifs. Last year was about the what now. This year is about the gimme more. We've developed a taste for it. Intoxicating. Addicting. I will cut you and everybody you love for another one.
But we're getting too far ahead of ourselves. The season might be over in June, or it might be over in October. But in a few hours, Buster Posey will catch Tim Lincecum in a base-ball game. Anything can happen after that. Someone walked around this place and sprayed an aerosol can of hope everywhere. Turns out that this Opening Day isn't much different than most of the other ones over the past 56 years. Just a little greedier, and that's just fine with me.