We made the mistake of looking at the calendar the other day, the one in the basement that we were using to mark the Pirates wins and losses day by day. It was still on June which began with 3 losses, and finished with 9 wins and 19 losses. We stopped marking them on June 19 after the Cubs swept us 3 games at Wrigley and right before we lost 3 out of 4 to the Giants at home. Not only stopped marking but also stopped tearing off the month pages. The Bucs have done better since June and are just above .500, but were recently swept at home by the Marlins and are on a 4 game losing streak at this writing. We guess a lot of stuff happened in July and August, but you couldn’t tell from our man cave calendar. Those days just flew by.
Which reminded us of one of the soap operas our mom used to watch back in the 60’s. At the beginning, this guy with an ominous voice would say, “Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives.” It’s been running for over 50 years now, so it must be a heck of a show but we never quite got it. All the guys had weird names like “Stone” and “Crag” and maybe “Brick”. It seemed like there were a lot of masonry and/or rock formations represented among the male characters. Meanwhile, nobody we knew was named after geological outcroppings except maybe Cliff on “Cheers”. The female characters were like “Jennifer”, “Daphne” and “Chloe”. Everybody was extremely emotional at all times, and constantly agonizing over the state of their own and everybody else’s romantic lives. This didn’t make any sense to us as we couldn’t imagine either of our parents getting worked up about what Brick said to Daphne at the cocktail party that caused Cliff to storm out with Chloe. The only time we ever saw dad get emotional was that one time when we waxed the car like he asked but didn’t know we weren’t supposed to wax the windshield too.
Every so often one of the days of their lives would feature a fight, which you’d think would sort of pique our interest. Except that even the fights were weird. Crag and Stone would square off with fire in their eyes and fists clenched, and Stone would bellow, “Penelope loves me!” Then Crag would fix him with a steely gaze and kinda ripple his jaw muscles and sneer, “That’s where you’re wrong, Stone. She loves me!” Then they’d scuffle around a little being careful not to muss up each other’s hair and Penelope would rush in, all emotionally overwrought, to break it up and start blubbering about how she was totally confused and would everyone please leave. Please!
We’ve seen a couple knuckle dusters in our time, but not one of them involved which of the combatants a given lady was more fond of. Ford vs. Chevy? Sure. Steelers vs. Browns? Absolutely. Woodland Hills vs. Upper St. Clair? Buckle your chinstrap! But not “Who does Penelope fancy?” In the real world, Crag and Stone would just let her figure it out for herself and maybe go to the game with Brick and Cliff who had seats on the third base line.
Speaking of high drama in a romantic vein, how about young Grant Birdsong, a Pitt undergraduate, who tried to impress his female companion by climbing up a fire escape and jumping from the rooftop of one Oakland building to the rooftop of another. He didn’t get quite enough air and found himself wedged between two buildings for six hours while paramedics tried to rescue him. This would not make a good episode of “The Days of Our Lives” since “Grant” is not their kind of name, unless it’s short for “Granite.” Before you say “The Young and the Brainless” let me propose that the Birdsong saga has big screen potential. Can’t you just see Matt Damon playing him in “The Bourne Loser”? How about “Harry Potter and the Broomstick Factory Recall”?
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