Oct 7, 2010
Looking out over Philly from Citizens Bank Park last night seemed dream-like in the 3rd inning last night. Rain must have been falling over center city and the low hanging clouds made the buildings appear smeared, like you couldn't quite focus on them. Like they weren't real.
Later, I was sure it was dream. Like I didn't really see what I had just seen.
It was raining in the dream. Not hard, but just enough to be annoying.
As always, I had my camera strapped to my belt. I never go anywhere without my camera but there would be no pictures from the dream. It's always that way in dreams, your mind makes some excuse to define the reality. In this case, I had a camera and fresh batteries but had some how forgotten load a memory card. It was like I had integrated the alarm clock into the dream somehow.
By the sixth Inning it was becoming true. I may be watching a no hitter. In the payoffs. It wasn't going to be a perfect game because of a walk in fifth but there were an awful lot of zeros up there. The crowd was getting superstitious. We were loud, but no one would dare say "He's going for a no hitter". A group of young guys a few rows ahead of us were putting a single index finger to their lips to motion "Shhhh".
By the seventh we were screaming at every strike. We were waving our little red and white helicopters and urging Roy Halladay to continue.
In the eighth we were signaling the number of outs remaining with our fingers like they were some sort of secret passcode. Five. four then three.
In the ninth, the noise was deafening. It was primal scream therapy for 46,411. Girls were dancing and everyone was high fiving except now we were doing it with the number of outs extended on our fingers.
Two, then one.
Then there was a moment when I swore I heard 46 thousand people suck all the air in the ball park into their lungs at once. The ball was hit, it dribbled away fair Ruiz scrambled after it, slid to his knees and threw it to first.
He had done it.
This is tough to admit, but I cried a little. There was just something that struck me about the players, working together through 162 games, now participating in game number 163 and history, hugging each other.
After it was over no one wanted to leave. Groups took pictures to prove they were there. I couldn't of course because of the missing memory card, but we had a least one working camera in the crew.
I hope to get those pictures at least.