It is that time of the year again; the end of the old and the beginning of the new. Under normal circumstances mankind has used this opportunity to muse about the “what ifs” and the “if onlys” of the past year, in an effort to deal with the sometimes cruel facts of history as the year has written it. On the other hand filled, with the New Year Spirit the usual celebration involves resolutions of change of one sort or another and attempts at prophesy of both joyous and dire things to come.
This year is different. I have access to a time machine. I toyed with the idea of secretly voyaging back to October of the year, of interfering with what has already taken place. Needless to say it, my passion for the Yankees to be in the World Series again was my highest level of commitment. It looked easy because in April the Yankees were touted as having the strongest lineup in baseball.
My mission was simple, get into the time vortex and show up for the beginning of game 5 of the MLB playoff between the Detroit Tigers and the New York Yankees. I would simply create a distraction which would annoy Don Kelly and he would miss the home run pitch which set the pace for the Tiger victory.
Don Kelly was a great utility player for the Tigers reaching the rare achievement during his career of having played every position on the field for the Tigers. His Achilles Heel if he had one, was his mid 200s batting average.
With that in mind I knew I could do it. I Googled the longitude and latitude of Yankee Stadium, using my ten year old desk top computer. A menu came down indicating that I needed to down load a dozen upgrades. The evening news was starting on the TV in my living room and my wife was calling me to watch with her. “In a minute” I half lied knowing it would just seem like a minute to her. I set the coordinates, turned on the time vortex and jumped in.
When I arrived in the Bronx I found myself outside of the stadium without a ticket or money and no way to enter. I should have waited for those downloads. Desperately I looked for a way in, to catch the start of the game. I found a beer delivery truck and hopped aboard. I ducked out of sight just as it entered to make a delivery. Thinking quickly, I grabbed a large cup of beer from a nearby counter and made my way toward the Tiger’s dugout. I intended to soak Don Kelly with beer as he was walking out to the on deck circle. Alas, I was unable to approach to within throwing distance and had to abandon my plan.
In the late innings I held a position high in the outfield bleachers just above where Don Kelly was playing .Still clinging to the beer I watched Derek Jeter hit a long ball almost over the fence. With careful aim and timing I let the 20 oz cup of beer sail through the air when suddenly a cute blond with a St.Louis Cardinal Baseball cap stood up and blocked the liquid containing missile with her outstretched arm. She turned and looked at me and said “I hope that wasn’t Budweiser.”
Don Kelly caught the ball. Jeter was out!
As I began an indignant Bronx cheer the vortex whipped me up and out of the bleachers and I found myself sitting on the floor of my den. My pretty wife with a twinkle in her eye said, “This was the Cardinal’s year!” then tossed the cord to the time machine onto the floor beside me.
As I sat there I wondered if it might be worth the trip forward to December of 2012 to see if the world was going to end. I thought about it for a while then decided the Mayan calendar ended in 2012 because they ran out of stone to continue it. And why would I really want to know that the world would end in 2012 anyway. I still have plans.
Theodore Morrison Homa MD