I’m full of conspiracy theories today. All sorts of “Gavin is trading all the players who’ve really connected with fans” and “Gavin is ridding himself of those most likely to speak up when they see the train leaving the rails” and “Gavin is now feeding sound bites to others in an effort to make himself look like less of a douche” conspiracy theories.
I guess you probably see the pattern here.
I consider myself lucky in that, in the midst of this mess, I’ve been able to talk through things with some of our wise TA elders. I ask questions and they answer. They discuss and I listen. They ask my opinion and I have absolutely no idea what to say.
Well, that was yesterday, anyway.
Today, one of them is replying to emails entirely in Latin. Others have gone silent.
There’s a sense of shock. Not even shock, but shell shock.
I wasn’t sure if that was really the term to describe what I’m feeling, what I think a lot of us are feeling, but a quick look at Wikipedia confirms it.
It has been described as a reaction to the intensity of the bombardment and fighting that produced a helplessness appearing variously as panic, or flight, an inability to reason, sleep, walk or talk.
Oh, yes. That’s totally it. We’ve all been waiting for the other shoe to drop since Spenny was shown the door. We’re down two shoes this week. How many more shoes do we have?
We all knew another trade was coming. I was certain that it would (heartbreakingly) be Eric Alexander but, as it turned out, the next former Timber with a plane ticket was Mike Chabala.
There are some who will point to his recent play and assure me this is a good move both for the team and for Mike. I get it, but there are still others I’d rather had gone first. And I’m not keen on spinning this as a mercy trade. Poor, poor Mike gets to go to DC! He’ll see some playing time now! They were just gonna release him at the end of the season anyway, right?
Whatever. Maybe that’s the reality, but it sounds like something a shadowy, GW-flavored version of James Carville might craft. If there’s a quote from Mike that confirms the story, I’ll happily retract the previous statement. And if it’s out there, I’m guessing someone will soon point it out to me.
Mike came to us midway through last season and immediately showed himself to be someone who understood what it meant to play in the Rose City. It’s not enough to play and play hard. It’s not enough to just wear the badge. You have to have passion. You have to have fire. You have to become one of us.
Mike found a way to do that immediately.
I will add him to the list of players I will miss. And I will wish him the best with his new team.
I made my pilgrimage to the stadium today, spurred by sentimentality or insanity or something else I can’t quite identify. I looked out over the field. I reached out to touch gates and the walls. I imagined a better time, a happier time.
And it worked for a minute. The ghostly echo of a chant, a hint of smoke, laughter, love, pride, passion….
The pod will be out sometime Friday. I probably said something stupid that people will laugh openly about, but at this point it’s all just a blur. With any luck at all, the stupid stuff I said will be difficult to hear as I think I was holding my mic somewhere near my right ear. Regardless, I’m honored to have been invited and thankful that I finally got to meet Roberto and Nevets. I still haven’t bought Nevets a beer, but I did leave some cider in Merritt’s basement for him.