For the next four to seven games, and the agonizing hours of wait between them, everything I touch will be an omen. I’ll search for clues in sleep and speech and spend every conscious moment mentally bending the spoon in favor of the Cardinals. I mean, they beat Kershaw twice to get here. How hard could this really be?
It won’t be easy. They never are. Every mental permutation comes out the same shade of blurred, indecipherable mess that runs down the walls and won’t stick. Earth has spun on it’s axis a few thousand times since, players and coaches have come and gone, other Championships were grasped, yet I still can’t keep 2004 from running its dirty nails down the center of my spine. I’ll fixate until the wound is patched.
I seethe at that four game sweep of the top Cardinal lineup of my lifetime. For as capable as my brain is of craving the majestic, it anchors in reality. And all I have to touch and feel going into this is the disaster of 2004. I remember beards. It’s deja vu all over again.
But through waves of gut-wrenching doubt, I remember that nothing is the same. There’s nothing to be gleaned from that series. Though, I could warp the minds of the despondent Cardinal faithful huddling out of Busch that night if I traveled back and explained 2006, 20011, and Matheny managing Yadier and how Carp felled a rib to birth Wacha. I’d be the most welcome prophet. I’d kick Jimmy Fallon square in the throat.
Here’s to hoping the Cardinal kiddos of 2013 are too talented and/or dumb to realize what’s at stake – most of them weren’t born in 2004 anyway. Here’s to the return Allen Craig. Here’s to the 2013 National League Champion St. Louis Cardinals. Here’s to France, the moon whose magic rays move the tides of the world*.
*I was looking for a powerful toast to cap this one off and that’s what Google gave me. Go Cards. Cards in 3.