I was once in the finals of an intramural basketball league, playing against my roommate in the championship game, and I remember distinctly how knotted and gnarled my stomach was the night before. How I couldn't sleep very well. How I woke up the next morning and had such anticipation, I could feel the juices in my stomach gurgling and I couldn't eat much of anything. I couldn't even speak to my roommate. I got to the court two hours early and just tried to get myself in the zone. All day, I couldn't focus my thoughts on anything else except the game. How I would perform. How it would play out. How it would end.
That's how I feel today. Honestly, sometimes I don't know how these players do it.
It's sickening how breathless I am awaiting the start time of the Dodgers' 2009 NLDS, a scant five hours away. I'll be there, of course, but I can't stop thinking about this game. Maybe it's the pitching matchup, or the fact that everyone seems to be against us in the press, or the worries that I have about going in with such mixed signals of momentum (against a team who did slightly worse down the stretch than we even did).
Or maybe it's the fact that last year, it wasn't expected at all that we could win a postseason series. We didn't have the best record in the National League. We were looked at with derision for winning the NL's worst division. And we had a team of youngsters without postseason experience, let alone facial hair (both of which have been addressed this year).
And yet, by the end of it all in 2008, the Pantheon of Post-1988 Dodger Playoff Win Heroes had expanded from one lonely Jose Lima to include a whole cadre of Dodger players:
So here we are, moments away from the 2009 NLDS. The Phillies are already playing. Let's get this party started already over in Chavez Ravine!
This seemed to work well for last year's NLDS against the Cubs, so I'm going to do it again. Let's take it One Day At A Time, Dodgers.
This is it. (This is it.) This is life, the one you get so go and have a ball. This is it. (This is it.) Straight ahead and rest assured you can't be sure at all.
So while you're here enjoy the view. Keep on doing what you do So hold on tight we’ll muddle through One day at a time, (One day at a time.)
P.S. We won the intramural championship finals, by the way.