Chaim Witz Reports: Game 1 - The Curse of Blagojevich

October 01, 2008 | Comments (0) | by Chaim Witz

Economic recession be damned, I was lucky enough to score 2 tickets to Game 1 of the Cubs-Dodgers series at beautiful Wrigley Field. Section 218, Row 22. All day at work the anticipation level was as high as my effeminate voice. Fellow bartender Tommy Buzanis also came upon some bleacher tickets through a bizarre set of circumstances, but don't hold your breath waiting for his writeup. After tonight's results I imagine that he went into one of his infamous 'steak comas' and won't wake up until around Game 4 or when Jimmy Buffet tickets go on sale, whichever comes first. Anyway, back the game.

After cutting out of work early and hitching a ride to the game with my boss and his son (I figure you can't get in trouble for playing hooky if it's with Bossman), I met up with Mrs. Witz in front of the Ernie Banks statue a few minutes before first pitch. Our seats weren't too shabby, especially given that we only paid $40 for them and they were being scalped outside for a couple hundred apiece.

The game started out well enough. Mark DeRosa's two run donkey appeared to be a routine pop up but then kept carrying and carrying and carrying....the crowd went nuts. Playoff baseball was in the air. The game had a good 'feel' to it. Dempster was shaky for the first few innings (walks!) but kept wiggling his way out of it. The crowd was behind him, trying to help, even though many were probably thinking 'this isn't good'. Then came the ominous sign that things were about to take a dastardly turn.

We were sitting towards the back of our section, where you can look up and see the back of the box seats, where the fat cats sit, along with the walkway they use to enter their suites. Who walks out but resident a-hole (and *cringe* Cubs fan), Governor Rod Blagojevich. Now I don't care where you stand on the political spectrum...but pretty much everybody, Democrat or Republican, hates this tool. Seriously, what an asshat. Everybody starts booing loudly, yet he keeps smiling and giving the thumbs up...clearly loving the attention. This guy clearly loves the pseudo-celebrity of his position. I yelled, "Hey dumbass, unless your name is Bruce or Moose, there's no way you can't tell we're booing you!" He even came down to the 'standing room only' area, and posed for pictures. The nerve!

It was right about this time that Dempster really shit the bed, loading the bases (walks!) and then giving up a grand salami to James Loney. Talk about taking the life out of the crowd. Wow. Dempster looked shaky at best, terrifying at worst.

The rest of the game was pretty blase, especially when the Dodgers kept piling it on. It seemed like everything they hit in the air left the yard. On the other hand, the Cubs couldn't string any hits together to save their lives. The crowd wasn't really into it, but then again, the Cubs never really gave us any reason to hope. I'm not sure we had any runners in scoring position save for a random A-Ram double later in the game. We stayed and held out hope until the bitter end (we were after all, there to witness that miracle comeback a few weeks back when they were down 6-2 with 2 outs in the 9th), but this was to no avail. There was no joy in Wrigleyville tonight. 7-2, Dodgers prevail.

I, like you dear reader, will be watching from the comfort of my own home tomorrow night. But right now I'm feeling far from comfortable.

A few random notes and rants from the game:

-The last game we went to a few weeks ago, we seemed to get caught in the 'cougar section'. This game? The 'morbidly obese' section. Good Lord in heaven, I've never seen so many fat people in my entire life. The guy directly in front of us? Made Big Pussy from The Sopranos look like Lil' Pussy. The American obesity epidemic has officially spiraled out of control as of October 1st, 2008. Mark it.

-The ballpark etiquette on display was atrocious. This probably had to do with the fact that most of these assholes were 'entertaining clients' or 'checking their Blackberrys for tax shelters', but still. How fucking hard is it to wait until between innings to get up and go fart around? Seriously, I was so annoyed at having to get up and let people by or have the rows in front of us stand up to do likewise that I made my displeasure vocal. Were my words heeded? Oh God no. I apparently don't wield the kind of power that Governor Blagojevich does.

-On those walkways we also saw Jim Belushi, star of 'According to Jim'. According to Chaim, 1989 called for you Jim, and it wants it's leather jacket back.

-Surest sign that things weren't up to snuff tonight? I had all of one beer. ONE BEER! That has to be an all-time low for me at any sporting event, including my first Iowa Hawkeye game when I was 6 years old.

The crowd around me was big and rich, and I ain't talking about the country band.


Manny being Manny!(He actually grounded into a DP here)