It is all a blur this morning as I attempt to make sense of the outcome of Game 6 of the NLCS Playoffs last night. Owing to circumstances well beyond my control (a two hour lit course and a long subway ride home), I was only able to situate myself in front of a television at 12:42 am, well after the game had already concluded. I was understandably nonplussed, feeling once again that life had passed me by and reaffirmed in my view that no one should ever try to learn anything. Things soon changed, however, when I came to discover the enormous trove of e-mail, phone and text message accounts with which I had been deluged during the game. Suddenly I felt a bit like an archivist or social historian: picking through these various accounts created a sort of Rashomon-like sensation of relative truth and perception. A modified transcript follows here. Next time I think I'll just skip class:
(Pete Hoffman): Okay... it is so ridiculous it is that John Maine is the starting pitcher in an elimination game. Jose Reyes is going to be a superstar, if he is not already. He reminds me of Rickey and Kenny Lofton with Omar Vizquel. D. Wright and Reyes are going to be one of the best left sides in history.
(My Father/Cardinals Fan): It's hard to beat Reyes’s opening act, a liner that left the park at warp speed.
(Owen King): Jose Reyes has awesome hair. I can't be the first to have made this connection, but his hairdo really reminds me of Sideshow Bob.
(Clint Newman): I'm at a very frightening bar in Gownanus. Two men just (incoherent) with a Russian mail order catalog! I can barely see the TV!
(Hoffman): Interesting developments. Walking Pujols was the right move. I have played enough stratomatic against Pujols to know to walk him with the bases loaded with a two run lead. I don't think Edmonds and Rolen (who looks awful) can beat even the lowly John Maine. Ronnie Belliard believes he is Manny Ramirez. Too bad he has none of his skills. He does share his girth and hairdresser. I'm not sure those count as skills. Maybe. If Oliver Perez starts game 7, I will eat my hat.
(Dad): Whoever wins the series, it has been fun to watch the Dominican playoffs.
(Newman): I just ordered two pitchers of (several unintelligible phrases in succession). But I just laughed and told Adam there was no way he'd ever find a giraffe to begin with. Mets look good!
(King): Is John Maine the best pitcher ever to have a state for a last name? Is he the only one? There's probably been some Dakotas in the big leagues, but I can't think of any other possibilities off the top of my head. Am I missing someone obvious? Wilson Oregon, the flamethrowing rookie of the year for the Boston Beaneaters in 1894 who died in a tragic piano tuning accident?
(Dad): Both clubs are flawed. They both have a rotation of three good pitchers and a prayer. That favors the Cardinals tomorrow.
(Newman): I have now and will always maintain total confidence in John Maine. In my opinion (the remainder of the next two sentences appear to be written in Cyrrilic). This is interesting when you consider I had no idea he was even an electrician!
(Hoffman): My eyes are deceiving me. This is impossible. John Maine? Do people in Maine like him?
End 6th Inning:
(Hoffman): I'm surprised that Carpenter was taken out. He is the best pitcher in the National League and only threw 80 pitches and Looper has a terrible history in Shea.
4 Minutes later:
(Hoffman): Lauren is making me watch Project Runway. Argh. I think Uli is going to win. I have it in picture-in-picture but it is not the same without the audio.
(King): In many ways this series has begun to take on many of the same of the tense qualities I have routinely come to associate with Project Runway. I like Vincent's designs. He reminds me a bit of Pedro Martinez, only he can stay healthy.
(Hoffman): At the beginning of the year, I thought batting Lo Duca second was silly. He is slow and doesn't get on base enough. But that hit proves his true value, he hits behind runners as well as anyone in the league. He constantly moved people ahead and even when he got out, he was making productive outs. I guess this is why Willie Randolph manages the Mets and not me.
(Hoffman): This game is OVER.
(Newman): Vera Wang is filling in for Michael Kors! Or is this a rereun?!
(Dad): It was in many ways a game decided by double plays. The Mets’ were more numerous and timely. The Cardinals got little out of their men on base.
(Hoffman): Well that was interesting. Billy Wagner is a great pitcher, but seems to have problems occasionally. He needs to throw more fastballs. I can't believe John Maine pitched that well. I am waiting for Shea Stadium to split in two and for Satan grace us with his presence. Really impressive.
(Dad): For a fifth year in a row, the National League contenders beat each other senseless in a 7-game marathon.
(Newman): I mean can you even begin to grasp the absurdity of accepting a giant wooden horse from your enemies? What exactly is it they expected to do with this thing anyway?!
(King): Man, I hope the Mets can score enough to keep Wagner out of the game tomorrow. He looks really worn down.
On to Game Seven…