January 3, 2013

Field of Dreams

by Cindy Falteich

My kid has a dream. He wants to be a major league baseball player.

You don’t have to share the odds of that happening with me because I do everything in my power to stop from stating the facts to him. This is a feat, because he constantly reminds me of this goal and the bookies swear I’ll lose my ass if I don’t bet against him.

Not long ago he also told me he wants to take all his friends on an overnight ski trip to a local slope for his birthday. The kitty I can expect to collect before winter gives out makes this request laughable. But I bit my tongue and forced out, “Let’s wait and see.”

Then he made his Christmas list. The first thing my husband did was freak about the contents. “Did you see this? This is thousands of dollars of stuff! I’m having a talk with him. This isn’t even practical.” I’d already seen the list, along with one of the catalogs from which my son shopped. So although I felt the same way, my son saw my simple nod of acknowledgement when he presented it to me.

The way that kid dreams can really press some buttons. His dad and I hang in there with his major league scheme expecting to pick up the pieces when it’s shattered. And I didn’t even bother to tell his father about the birthday ski party because I knew he’d only reiterate that I would fail to tease that from my self-inflicted budget. But the Christmas list got him. My husband needed to rein that child in.

My words were clear, calm and concise: “Don’t take away that child’s ability to dream.”

“But it’s…!”

“It’s just a list. Nothing more.”

Nothing more than a reminder of what opportunities my husband and I can’t give him.

Nothing more than a coat check on reality.

Nothing more than a joint culmination of failure.

After Christmas, my kid was playing the MLB game he received for his Wii. A week after opening it, he was still getting his ass kicked by animated characters operated by an inanimate object. But on this afternoon, he found himself surprisingly in the game with a few innings to go.

Until his dad chimed in. “Would that game give you a bench clearing brawl?”

“I don’t know.”

“Try it. Hit the next five batters with a pitch and see what happens.”

This is what I knew was true at the moment. That boy was desperate for interaction. He’s a people person born to hermits so on another eve of a slow moving weekend, he was jones-ing for collaboration. He didn’t even know what he was compromising when he compromised.

Twenty minutes later he was by my side in the kitchen slapping leftovers on a plate and pounding on butter with such disgust I thought he would burn himself in effigy over the gas stove. 

“What’s up?” I asked.

That boy couldn’t repress a fart if he was in the presence of a princess. Justly, he exploded. “I was about to win my game and I wanted to and I could’ve for the first time ever but Dad told me to hit the batters, then I ran out of pitchers and got pissed and turned the game off and now I can’t get it back because it didn’t save and I could’ve WON!!”

Ever notice the sparse punctuation in anger?

Here’s my quandary: is this my process? Is this any of my business? What if my husband was only tired of that boy’s endless optimism? What if he was bored watching the child dutifully swing at pitch after pitch, seeing him shut out inning after inning, manufacturing runs from slug bunts and lame hits, pausing play to read his manual because he was desperate to uncover an advantage when the truth is people seldom win?

That might have been one truth, but my words were clear, calm and callous: “Don’t manipulate that child for your own entertainment.”

“I wasn’t.”

“You were. If you weren’t, you’d have shown interest in what he was doing instead of destroying what he was building for your own personal enjoyment.”

“He was welcome to tell me to get lost.”

“Right. Like you gave him that option. Be the adult. Just once.”

Then I bit my cheek. It hurt. It might have bled. I wanted to blabber on about my husband’s propensity to make crap of something in lieu of mastering it. I wanted to rub his nose in his past and analyze every circumstance I’d ever witnessed where he had the chance to raise the bar but chose to chop it in half and use it for kindling. I was desperate to point out that had he ever embraced a challenge instead of throwing it away, he might have excelled at something other than sucking wind during that mid-life crisis he led us in.

But I didn’t. I know I’m capable of observing the worst in him without fostering any thought of good. And our relationship used to be so arduous that the worst can be summoned more quickly in my mind than the best. But then there’s the boy. Does he need to hear this about his dad? And does his dad need a lashing from someone who could find little more than this to say about herself?

How does a boy, ripe with naiveté, become a grown man like my husband—someone quick to slam what makes life vibrant, or like me—defending innocence while disguising skepticism? Was my husband like my son before parents like me sat patiently by until the appropriate age to inject him with reality? Is my mate’s vocal defense of practicality more revered than my secret fear of failure? Is it nobler to state the odds or defy them? Having checked in on both counts, who am I to say a damn thing?

Is it my foolish optimism that will net me a middle-aged basement-dwelling dreamer and finger pointers who say, “I told you so?” Do I fear failure for my child or do I really fear failing him? If we have to learn to manifest our dreams like we learn to walk—crawling, then walking, then running—is my child simply mastering baby steps? When will my fear of his failure finally put an end to his progress?

I know what life is like. I wake every morning wondering if breaking free from reality should be left to professionals. But try to force a lens of defeat on my child’s visions and I'm conflicted.

Sure, being a major league baseball player is a high order but someone will be one. Thousands, actually. What are we if not potential? If we never know what the future will bring, why not dream and dream big instead of grasping for dear life to caution and mediocrity and what most realists like to call “security.” If we can’t know what the future will bring, why not expect the best? At any age?

Even a dreamer will tell you that the most important part of dreaming is the process, not the product. To dream is a verb. It can pick up momentum like a runaway train. What if all you had to do as a parent was get out of the way? What if all I had to do for me was stop being afraid? And what if finally breaking free from fear was the only thing I needed to do for both my husband and my son?

Out of nowhere my friends decided to plan an overnight ski trip with the kids. I couldn’t believe it. They found a weekend package so affordable it can be scraped from a paycheck. And I’m bringing cake. All my kid had to do was wish for it.

My son didn’t get all the stuff he expected for Christmas. He got very little actually. But what he got was a surprise so unexpected that we never heard about the list again. That’s the funny thing about strictly defining a fantasy: you forget that something better than you can imagine awaits.

Today he finally beat the Wii. He told me he knew it was only a matter of time. His dad simply watched.

And right now he’s outside the back door, swinging his wiffle bat, dreaming of hitting a pitch into outfield seats at least four hundred feet away while playing for a team that was looking for someone exactly like he has become. 

And he’s dressed in the uniform of dreams.

He’s unencumbered by facts when he makes a wish.

Maybe I should follow suit.

November 5, 2012

When Porn Flies

by Cindy Falteich

According to the official Phillies calendar, the season ended on October 3rd. Normally that’s just a guideline for when the season could end if you’re not a Phillies fan. But this year? Well, let’s just say I know how those Mayans feel.

Contrary to popular belief, the world didn't end on October 3rd. Actually it’s supposed to end on my birthday this year. How ironic that the one good reason to celebrate me for eternity is the world coming to an end.

It also means that the last Phillies game against the Nationals might have been the last Phillies game ever!

Maybe this is my last Phillies blog ever! If that’s the case, there’s reason enough for many to celebrate. Especially those crabby guys on Bleacher Report. It also means I have a lot of players to cover.


Where to start?

I know where it ended. When the Phils lost any chance of a playoff birth by sucking in Houston. I tried my best to sit back and enjoy the last nine innings of the year because—look on the bright side—it was the last possible loss.

Then an interesting thing happened. The bona fide, legitimate, undeniable National League wild card winner, the Atlanta Braves, had to play the consolation team for an actual playoff spot.

Whose idea was that? “Hey, let’s have the indubitable wild card victor play the first loser in a death match for instant elimination!”

What is this Hunger Ballgames? In the ninth inning of that tear jerker, Chipper Jones was a hit away from being the next Katniss Everdeen. Until somebody screwed with the playing field.

Let’s just say there’ll never be a pin-up calendar of MLB umpires.

Although Pin the Tail on the Ump is quite popular in many clubhouses.

My dad was wild. He’s a gray-haired, shanty Irish version of Clark Kent but when Atlanta was eliminated by a shot in the dark, he was hot. It didn’t help that Shane Victorino and Hunter Pence were traded mid season. When the shock of that wore off, he called me to say, “Did Amaro wake up and think, ‘Let’s just trade the two guys who hustle the most?’”

Was he drunk?

To that point in time, my dad wasn’t counting the Phillies out of the postseason. At his age, he’s seen stinkier underdogs come out smelling like a rose. But after the trades, I wondered if Ruben Amaro, Jr. should be reminded that his fans filled Citizens Bank Park for like 250 consecutive sellouts and now they think he smells like poo.

Then I saw a stat—one of those that reminded me that shedding salary takes its toll: “The purchase of Phillies-related products has declined by 60 percent."

To pad the pain they continued, “Even at the ballpark, Phils officials conceded they're selling less of practically everything but the quirky Phanatic caps and Carlos Ruiz merchandise.”

I have an idea. How about a quirky Carlos Ruiz cap? One where he looks like he’s sitting on my head.

Am I the only one who thinks the MLB channel is like daytime porn?

I wonder if apparel sales are why the Phillies took the $5 million option on Ruiz for 2013. They should give Carlos his own merchandise table at the ballpark. Like a rock star. Or at least give him tight leggings and a groupie.

Does this mean I can flash him my breasts?

My husband says, “Nobody can tell what they are.”

What if I flash them in Spanish?

I, for one, would like to have some input when it comes to Ruiz apparel. I vote to have Carlos wear as little as possible. 

I love a man with an accent who’s equipped with protective armor and is the defender of home plate. He’s like the Thor of my own little baseball fantasies.

Fantasies are even better when you mistake hot flashes for horniness.

Hey, don’t judge me! The world’s about to end and I’m way behind on my Phil-itically incorrect behavior. And although many people claim to have experienced what the afterlife is like, no one has ever confirmed that Anthony Weiner was guided by angels.

I still have to look up the spelling of his name. I just can’t remember that it’s ‘i’ before ‘e’ except after weenie. I wish there was a catchy song to remember it by. Maybe I’ll work on one. 

Oh, that politician has a last name that’s really hard to spell.
A tasty wiener and his wang have both been known to swell.
Oh, the next time that he strokes his schlong
Hope he recalls where it belongs
Cyberspace is not the place for instagrams from P-R hell.

Remember, Anthony, it’s pubic hair, not public hair.

In heaven I bet white is the new dirty.

Did I tell you I believe Mormons created Viagra?

I could be wrong. If they did, the disclaimer would probably go something like this: “If you experience an erection that last more than four wives…”

My husband says, “…call your doctor and tell her to bring more condoms.”

Mormons must love baseball. Like me, they prefer things that come in threesomes. 

Does that make me Mormon? I’ve always wanted my own wife. 

My husband can’t even speak right now.

Of everything that happened this season, the thing that hurt the most was Juan Pierre’s move to the bench. 

He has a lifetime .300 average and 30 steals for the umpteenth time in his career. A man who can round the bases with that speed would get more respect on Match.com.

Hey, the Braves hired a chick. To announce this time. That’s a first in major league history. When she interviews a player perhaps they should simulate a real conversation with a man and point the camera directly at her breasts.

The Miami Marlins have oysters for sale at the ballpark. I don’t know if that’s a good or bad idea. 

Depends on if you ask my parole office.

So the Phillies season ended before I could wear my official Phillies parka and my team stocking hat compliments of the Cabrini College giveaway. Look on the bright side, at least the soccer playoffs are in full swing.

Hey, is it true David Beckham models underwear while he’s playing?

I’ve never been with a man who can work only with his feet. 

One thing is certain: Anthony Weiner doesn’t play soccer.

See you at the ballpark.

Check me out at www.cindyfalteich.com or read my new book The Aliquot Sum, available at Barnes & Noble or Amazon.

August 1, 2012

The Cure for a Trade Hangover

by Cindy Falteich

There was a sign over my grandma’s stove that read:
Even at a young age, I knew I was in trouble. At five, I’d done neither. Now I do neither well.
Speaking of things I do poorly… I’ve been blogging for almost three years. 
That’s a year longer than my husband has experienced satisfying sex.
Okay, maybe I’m giving myself too much credit. That’s at least two years longer than I thought he’d experience satisfying sex.
It’s a sad state of affairs when you have the propensity to do well but your performance has slacked off.
In some parts, it’s a common phenomenon known as marriage.
In others, it’s the 2012 Phillies. The team would be set if there was a Viagra for major league baseball players.
Well, technically, I guess there is. Just not one that helps them round those bases.
As a result, Ruben Amaro, Jr. felt the need to shed payroll. And Shane Victorino and Hunter Pence were sheared like sheep. Before you know it, I'll have nothing left to do but think of my husband when we're having sex.
How could I forget the day Hunter Pence came to town? Twenty-four hours later I was kicked off the community blog site that had embraced me like a stray cat that was pissing on the shrubs.
And all I did was use the word “titties” in context.
I wonder if I can put that on my tombstone.
I’d say epitaph but it sounds like I need a bath.
Hunter, I’ll remember the day you arrived like it was only a year ago.
Wait. It was. That’s probably why it feels like it. Let me see if I feel anything else.
Sorry, my husband says I can’t share that.
I told my teenage son, who knows everything, about the trades. He said, “Schierholtz?”
It might be helpful to tell you he didn’t say it as an inquiry—it was more like the inflection he uses when I tell him to put down his Victoria’s Secret catalog during dinner.
Like this: “Schierholtz?!”

Or the same voice I use to answer my husband when he says, “Want to have sex?”
Like this: “With you?!”
Maybe I could put my husband on the trading block. I could get some young prospects, cash and a lay to be named later.
Wait. That was a Freudian slip—just like the one my husband had the night my son was conceived.
Maybe the problem is Ruben Amaro, Jr. thinks I need some upgrades. Just like the makers of Viagra who think there’s something I need enhanced.
Man, were they wrong. Like I want someone who doesn’t interest me to want more of what doesn’t interest me about him. Now, if they really wanted to spice up a relationship they’d invent a pill that makes something glow in the dark.
And just like a Glowstick you’d have to whack it to make it work.
Or they could dress my husband’s tool to look like something that excites me—like shoes. Have you seen how they design women’s heels to look like a duck or a tux? What if they made a johnson that looked like a shoe?
Now that’s what I’d like to see for a Ladies Day giveaway at Citizens Bank Park.
Unrelated: Is it still called porn if no one watches?
Wait, I got that messed up with the tree falling in the forest thing. Too many phallic symbols in this blog.
What if they had sponsorships for husbands? Like Red Bull’s support of wakeboarding. Only my husband’s sponsor would be Frosted Mini Wheats. Or since that industrial accident, we could say Frosted Mini Wheat.
Maybe I should just suck it up and get my mind right about these trades. Then I could put it back where it belongs: in the gutter. What’s wrong with me? I haven’t even stalked these new arrivals and I’m acting like they’re all virgins.
Wait. That’s not such a bad thing. Let me try again. … I’m acting like they’re all… Wow, they’re men! What more could I possibly want?
I know: previews. I want a trailer of each new player. Just a simple YouTube video. I’d even direct. Imagine scantily clad ballplayers prancing around in cute heels. Two of my favorite things in one place!
I have a better idea: I could make a “Call Me Maybe” video for the newbies:
Here I am
I’ll love you baby
Those other guys
They call me crazy.

Don’t you listen
They’re just lazy
Don’t call the cops
Just say,” Maybe.”
My fear is that the exceedingly poor team performance has overshadowed the possible career years of Carlos Ruiz and Juan Pierre. What scares me most is Carlos is in a contract year and nothing is being leaked.
Well, when I sneeze it’s a different story.
Juan Pierre is the guy who just can’t find a permanent home. He’d be a beloved everyday contributor to any team if someone would just have a career ending injury.
Or get traded to a team that’s a contender. Face it, both Victorino and Pence went on to greener pastures. Maybe it’s Pierre’s time to shine.
He could finally have a Viagra moment.
Hey, is that product placement?
My husband says, “No, that’s what I did on your honeymoon.”
Suddenly everyone’s a comedian.
See you at the ballpark.

Check out my new website or stalk me on Twitter.

May 9, 2012

This Definitely Won't Get Me Back on Bleacher Report

by Cindy Falteich

For the first time in a long time, the Phillies are bottom-feeders. They’re scrounging for a W in a division defined not by wins, but by those who float to the top with the fewest losses. Where unfamiliar names like Pierre, Nix, Orr, and Wigginton patch holes in an offense wounded by the premature expectations of something greater.

Sounds like my honeymoon.

The Phillies can’t win, my husband is out of town, and I’m about to get my period. It’s time to get down and dirty.

Did you know there’s not a synonym for “dildo” on Thesaurus.com? You probably didn’t. How embarrassing. You also can’t find the cure for an impotent lineup.

I keep thinking Charlie has a secret weapon up his sleeve—a chant, a strip-o-gram, a superstition—something he does before reporters are allowed to enter the locker room. 

Wait, we might not want to see that.

Maybe there’s something he says that players are threatened not to repeat—like the things I say around my son that end with, “Mom, not everyone loves the Phillies THAT way.”

It’s why I clear my browsing history before the sitter comes.

It’s why UrbanDictionary.com is not an acceptable reference for my kid’s term paper.

It’s why the guys at Bleacher Report kicked me off even though I used “titties” perfectly in context. 

I feel so violated. 

Actually, I’m lying. It was the first time I got to use “pussies” in a piece of business correspondence.

My husband says that’s not politically correct.

Yeah, but it’s anatomically correct.

Where were we? Oh yeah, the latent lineup. The bottom line is, we don’t like this. As fans, we want certainty; we hate curveballs.

We want every player to be a hard hitter, a wicked base runner, a blinding hurler, a spry fielder and a good kisser. But only at positions one through nine.

My husband says there’s something wrong with the above paragraph. Let me review.

Oh, yeah, I forgot position sixty-nine.

My apologies.

We want big contracts to protect against injuries, terrorists and the common cold. We paid $15 to park, dammit! We want real Cheesewiz on our steaks and wins—huge freaking triumphs!

But then Ryan Howard’s blown Achilles haunts us like a Shakespearian theme and the cartilage in Chase Utley’s knee is still AWOL. That leaves us with a curious case of how to do something with nothing.

Wow, do I know how that feels. Just last week I went to get my hair trimmed and ended up sheared.

And you thought that would be a boob joke.

Actually it is. The stylist cut my hair proportional to my chest.

Obviously he thinks I’m a minimalist.

Actually I am. For instance, take my husband.


I’m sorry. That was probably inappropriate. Or was that politically incorrect? Wait, my husband says he’ll explain: “It’s inappropriate to tell someone to take your husband. It’s politically incorrect to tell someone to take your husband because he has a limp dick.”

I remember now. He prefers, “Viagra-dependent.”

Like the blind man said while pissing into the wind: “It all comes back to me now.”

The question remains: Is it politically incorrect to refer to the Phillies as losers? 

How about we say we have a winning deficiency, losing becomes us, or the Phil’s lack of winning smolders like a Pennsylvania coal mine. It’s not that the game goes badly, it just ends too soon. We’re win-challenged, victory-impaired or, my favorite, loss-happy.

Makes us sound retarded.

Was that politically incorrect? I hope so. Somebody please violate me!

Shane Victorino started the season with a cameo on Hawaii Five-O

Like that segue?

He played a hot, young executive attending a balmy island retreat with breathtaking scenery and horny co-workers. He was also fully clothed. 

Note to the producers: That’s not masturbation material.

Then to rub it in my face, Shane appeared with his co-star, Daniel Dae Kim (that’s Hawaiian for “Daniel the Schlong”) while he threw out the first pitch on Monday.

(If you need help, click here: DaeSchlong.)

They were both fully clothed.

When’s the last time you heard a real woman say, “I wish he’d put his shirt on, he has such a great personality.”

“Look at the size of his hands—that’s an indication of intelligence.”

“I knew the bulge in his pants meant he was happy to see me but I just wanted to snuggle.”

“He likes paint-by-numbers?! That’s such a turn-on.”

“Those jeans are way too tight on his ass. He must struggle with self-esteem.”

“Wow, I wish he’d kiss that guy.”

Get my point?

Sign of the apocalypse: Jamie Moyer is second in the Rockies’ rotation.

You know he had Tommy John surgery. He set the record as the oldest active MLB player to do that too.

Yes, that's an innuendo.

I heard he got a tendon from a cadaver. Supposedly it was younger than one from his own body.

I won’t tell you what else he had transplanted from a cadaver. Supposedly, objects on the dead are larger than they appear. 

Now that’s what I call an organ donor.

Can you tell I have insomnia? 

My friend Dave, the only Cubs fan in existence, sent me a message after he beat the Phillies: “In 10,000 words or less can you describe how the Cubs beat Phillies’ pitching? Please use words like ‘shitty,’ ‘wind,’ ‘sand-in-my-eye,’ and ‘hooker.’”

I responded with poise and integrity: “Suck it, Dave.”

That’s because I’m a seasoned journalist.

My husband says, “Yeah, IN season journalist.”

Did you know they have a mold of Roy Halladay’s hand and forearm after he pitched the perfect game?

Wow, I just thought of a great dildo idea.

No, those are not congruent thoughts.

They’re consensual ones.

Phil-itically correct ones.

For some reason, a Canadian pharmacy still insists I need Viagra. My husband says, “I don’t need your head to get any harder than it is.”

Does anyone know what happens when your dog eats a 90-day supply of Cialis? My husband says, “Yeah—you call in under an alias for another.”

I gotta get some sleep.

See you at the ballpark.

October 4, 2011

Philadelphia Phillies: Wind, Wins and Other Things That Pass in the Night

by Cindy Falteich

Crickets and crows. That’s what we’re reduced to.

The songbirds that tweeted their 140 character posts from dawn till dusk have exploited the north and closed their accounts. The weeds that grew like beanstalks have begun to grey, a reminder that their exoskeletons will haunt me until our first big snow. And today it took only a breeze to rain leaves.

It all means just one thing: the postseason has rushed in like a brisk wind.

Or I’m just feeling the effects of tacos.

Growing up in the Midwest made me appreciate how short a 162 game season can be. Summers were abbreviated by camping trips, fish flies and fears of flood. By this time each year my little brother would empty the yard of crab apples by smacking them one-by-one with his plastic bat into the lawn across the street, dreaming that each one that pitted the siding cleared the wall at a major league stadium almost 200 miles away.

At County Stadium. That’s where Robin Yount and Paul Molitor swung like gods on deck. Where we snuck my little brothers into the game by shoving them through the turnstiles with a large group because our four country butts barely filled two bleacher seats. Where we handed our clothes packed in brown paper bags to the doorman at the Hyatt Regency who threw them in the trash because he thought we were just cleaning out the car.

Where our sunburns were the color of ketchup and the boys filled the air with the aftershock of digesting brats all the way home.

If they’re still looking for alternative energy sources, they should test the tailgaters in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Now another regular season has passed. A few days ago I flipped my Phillies’ calendar to a month of empty dates and ESPN didn’t have to pretend the Yankees were the only team worthy enough to make the promos.

Is it a coincidence that Moneyball came out at the climax of the baseball season? I think not. As a result, Brad Pitt is on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

Now that's what I call masturbation material.

Soon the season where I don layers to make up for my lack of culinary skills will be upon us. Before you know it, that whitewashed period of memory called ‘the holidays’ will pass and we’ll enter the point in time where we can ask, without criticism, “When do pitchers and catchers report?”

If the Phillies have one more 'Game 2' they’ll be asking that question much sooner than they thought.

In Game 1, Roy Halladay got hit before he retired 21 straight.

That night I witnessed the 11-6 conquest from three rows behind home plate. I saw Phillies’ backsides warm up to bat from a seat so close it was illegal to admire their body parts through my binoculars.

The gourmet hot chocolate in Diamond Club was so good I got a pimple.

I saw Hunter's pants warming up from ten feet away. I’m still drooling.

When Shane Victorino ran onto the field, I had to adjust my binoculars—one eye is dirtier than the other.

And you should know that the screen behind home plate was put there to keep people like me from fondling the players.

I’m not saying I was born with an abnormal amount of Phillies spirit (nor will I admit to my other abnormalities for that matter) but that night TBS televised my face and voice as the poster child for Phillies love.

When a friend texted me that I was on TV, I had one thought: I hope it wasn't when I let that stinker slip.

My husband says my whoop-whoop was the first time I’ve opened my mouth where it didn’t sound like I was simultaneously talking through my ass.

And thanks to a good headwind, he didn’t know what part of that pre-game meal was slipping through my crack.

So there I was, famous—if only for a moment.

Let us not forget, baseball is the endless quest for moments, the sum of which we hope produces a great memory. Cliff Lee, last year’s Christmas lift, could only claim in Game 2 that he sent nine guys pouting back to the bench with a capital K like he left them a lump of coal on a cold yule morn.

Hey, that’s an idea for a 5-hour energy commercial: “Cliff catch you looking?”

The loss was anticlimactic compared to the previous game but admit it: amazing plays, timely hits and ruthless pitching often compile a win, especially this year in Philadelphia, but when they don’t, let’s not miss the forest for the trees.

You win some, you lose some, you learn some. Every single day I’m reminded of what I don’t know. Maybe Charlie Manuel is too.

My dad says Charlie needs to ‘manage’ and I should get that message to him if I can. He should trade the ‘big inning’ for small ball. Exploit the speed. Watching Game 2 was a reminder that almost all manufacturing has moved overseas.

The gritty, dirtball, sandlot immaturity fizzled, replaced—one would think—with the illusion that less risky strategies would work. But if you’ve been paying attention, the only sure things in this world now are death and taxes for the middle class.

Don’t get me wrong, I hope the Phillies win the series. And I’d love to go head-to-head in the NLCS with the new Younts and Molitors—Fielder, Weeks, Hart and Braun. It wasn’t long ago Brett Myers drew a 9-pitch walk off Milwaukee’s CC Sabathia before punctuation of his initials was debated. The NLDS win led to another where Matt Stairs became an icon at more than just the Country Buffet. And then Joe Blanton earned the nickname Joe Lumber for his closed-eye homer that put the Fightins one win from a World Series parade.

Another one of those isn’t much to ask. Luckily for the Phils, I’m low maintenance—I don’t need to cook or clean to boost my self-esteem.

So the series is tied as the contenders head to St. Louis for two. The bookies bet the Phillies would win the series in four. The chance my son gets gassy in the third? Pretty good.

He’s from Midwest stock. Brats are in our DNA.

Is a World Series win in the stars?

Believe it.

See you at the ballpark.

Stalk me on Twitter.

Copyright 2011 Flattish Poe all rights reserved