It's my long-standing tradition to go to the last game of the season, whether the Mets were playing for their lives, or well off the pace. The last two years, well, we all know what happened. To say I was tense that morning is an understatement. Of course, things didn't end well.
Today, there's no tension. The only "tension" is my hope that the trains are running ok. I've gotten a bit of criticism from some friends and colleagues as to why I'd want to spend what is supposed to be a nice Sunday afternoon watching the Mets parade out there in a stupor one final, miserable time with about 30 other people. But I did have a discussion with a colleague on Friday afternoon, who was going to the game on Friday evening, and he pretty much summed up my feelings.
For the past 23 seasons, I have been going to baseball games. It's something I particularly enjoy doing. There have been years where the Mets have been just as bad as they were this year, and maybe even worse sometimes. But, still, I go. I make it to my 15-20 games a season, diligently. It doesn't matter how bad they are. It doesn't matter how many people laugh at me. It doesn't matter how empty the stadium is or even if it rains. Going to Mets games has been one of the things in life that I enjoy most, and I consider myself fortunate to be able to go to as many games as I do. I treat Opening Day with a great deal of anticipation, but I treat the Home Opener, should it not also be opening day, in such a way that I could probably run out to the stadium. And, on this day, the last day of the season, there's some degree of sadness. Not because the season is ending, lord knows that's not the case this year. But because this is the last time this year that I'll be getting on that 7 train and riding out to Citi Field. The next time I go there, it'll be April 5, 2010, assuming all goes well, and a new season and a new start. And hopefully a better result. So, today is the last time I'll make this voyage for 6 months. Not a long period of time, but long enough that I want to get out there one final time before the calendar turns.
I just hope it's a quick game.