It was very tense last night. My time was evenly divided between following primary election results and keeping an eye on the Twins game. Given that I solemnly foreswore political involvement this cycle, and that I have never been a baseball fan by strict definition, it was a tense and weird evening.
Here's the deal. I don't watch television. Turned it off in 1992 because I'd grown weary of that blaring, illuminated Cyclops in my family room. I thought it was a temporary thing. Maybe it was. How long is temporary? I made an exception on 9/11, but even then, I had to uncover the set (it was being used as an end table) and search for the remote. I forgot there was an on/off button on the set itself.
So, in the absence of the big tube in my life, this is how I follow a baseball game. I go to CNN's more-or-less live online coverage, "live" being scoring updates, accompanied by a nifty little graphic that shows which runner is on which base, number of balls and strikes and outs. Also a photo of each batter and each pitcher.
I keep the sound muted on my computer. So for me, baseball is a quiet, solitary experience, sans cheering and hotdogs and beer. Also I get to park for free.
I went to the Twins boxscore last night. They were already down 3-2. Poop. See, they have to win most of the rest of their games to make the playoffs and they also have a shot at first place in their division. They're neck and neck with Detroit and the Chicago White Sox. How do I know all this? Beats me. I'm not a fan.
Between batters, I shifted to the election results, also noiselessly displayed on my computer screen via the local press. Not many precincts tallied, so inconclusive. Back to the game. The Twins had tied it up! Refreshed the page. Rats! Just like that, they were down 4-3.
And so it went. It was confusing, the back and forth thing, such that at one point, I had Mark Kennedy at bat and Joe Mauer talking to Michael Moore outside the Capitol building.
Finally, the Twins persevered. They beat the A's, seven to five. Yessss!! Then I discovered that the White Sox and the Angels were tied, top of the ninth. Sox had two runners on base, two outs. Could the pitcher save it?
Had to find out how my Attorney General candidate was doing. Oh, more poop. He was down by 3 percent. Meanwhile, the Angels held off the White Sox and were batting in the bottom of the ninth.
The AG race had 80% of the vote counted. My guy was still behind. I needed a beer. Wait. I don't drink beer.
The Chicago/Los Angeles game went into extra innings. The AG race was not yet decided. It was long past my bedtime.
As I sat in splendid isolation at my computer, it occured to me that I might be in training for the life of a hermit. It's too late for the convent, plus, I'm not Catholic.
Why wasn't I at the ball game? Okay, I've never been to one, but still . . . . Why wasn't I at an election party? Because I have withdrawn from active participation in politics, that's why.
The election results were coming in more slowly. Probably the outlying areas. The Angels were up to bat, bottom of the 11th. Long game. I needed a reliever.
No change in the election results. The Angels had a runner on first! My guy was holding at -3%, but he was running out of time.
The Angels beat Chicago in the eleventh. I think that puts the Twins 2 games ahead of them. Eureka!
Back to election results.
My candidate lost. Victim of a carefully orchestrated movement against him. Once again, personal agendas trumped what's best for our state. One more indicator that the endorsement process here is fatally flawed. Sour grapes? Yup. Accurate? 'Fraid so.
I wonder when Democrats will stop playing dirty tricks on each other. Probably on the same bone-chilling day that Republicans do.
You know what? I think I like baseball better. It's a team sport.