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Well, that was…something.

I’m fine. Really.

Numb. Frayed at the edges. A couple bruises. Nothing I didn’t expect from Day One of Rostergeddon.

Kimura to NYRB. Purdy, Palmer and, possibly, Wallace out. Brunner to Houston. Smith gone.

That’s right.

Brunner to Houston. Smith gone.

I thought I’d prepared myself for this. With the leaks Sunday, it didn’t appear that we’d have any huge surprises. And, theoretically, we didn’t. I just wasn’t ready to let go.

Brunner was unexpected, but understandable. And, as I said yesterday, I fully expect that both my Scots are already gone. But the confirmation of the first departure, which came from Smith himself via Twitter, stunned me anyway.

I know this is a business and everything that happened today was a business decision. I know this.

But it’s a business where we share our highs and lows, our failures and our triumphs on a very personal level. It’s become clear to me that I feel it more than many. Over the last six months, I’ve come to envy those who don’t take it to heart as much as I do. They live happier, simpler lives.

Happier and simpler, but without the same color. Even on a painful day such as this, I wouldn’t trade a minute of despair for a moment of being blissfully unaware.

For every day like this one, there is another. For every day of loss, there is a day of victory.

I took the Kenny Cooper trade pretty hard last year, but I was rewarded (I know some of you will debate whether this was an actual reward or not) with Kris Boyd. The CalFC match was by far one of the lowest points of the season, but the win over Seattle followed quickly. Spenny was fired, but then Boyd threw his fit with Cubbie the very next day.

For every bitter pill, there is a spoonful of sugar.

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Posted by on December 3, 2012 in Timbers

 

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Thoughts on the eve of Rostergeddon

Yes. I totally stole that. Credit to Roberto.

I haven’t written much lately, at least not about the Timbers. My distraction has been multifaceted and far-reaching. The words just aren’t there for me to write down or, when they are there, they’re even more awkward and disjointed than usual.

We’re all waiting for it: some shocking announcement that sends a beloved, respected player somewhere unfathomable in exchange for…nothing. That’s been the pattern, hasn’t it?

Changes are afoot. Kosuke Kimura to NYRB, Michael Harrington from SKC and Will Johnson from RSL. There are about a bazillion other rumors, some more plausible than others, all currently unsubstantiated.

Who’s busy packing? Purdy, maybe Futty, hopefully Palmer. I’m working under the assumption that both my Scots are gone and not coming back. Who else will go?

There’s been a lot of chatter about Merritt’s vacuum tweet. And I naively want to read it differently than the rest of you.

keep in mind many moves aren’t made in a vacuum. Often other deals are part of the thinking and announcement timing isn’t aligned…

So, that was two weeks ago and I’ve been obsessing over it ever since. Is this one of those Brian Ching things where we let someone we really like go and then pick them up on the other side of the street when no one’s looking? Or is it that, instead of the wacky seven-team-trades that we’ve all been carefully mapping out, is it as simple as Merritt telling us that we’ve been heard?

People have been shouting about offloading Kimura since about ten minutes after he got here. And now he’s on his way to join Kenny in New York – where he will become assist leader in 2013. If we, collectively, have been heard, Palmer and Wallace will be gone by the end of the week and we’ll have the positions filled that needed filling at this time last year.

Whatever. I don’t know what’s going to happen this week. I just know it’s not going to be simple, it’s not going to be easy and I’m sure that I’ll end up in tears over it at least twice. I am, as one of my fellow bloggers tweeted, the godmother of emotional PTFC moments and I expect that this will be a very, very emotional week.

Helmets on, kids. Safety harnesses secured? Get ready. Rostergeddon is upon us.

12.3.12 Update 8:00 a.m.: I hadn’t even made it to work this morning before this was on Twitter – http://www.kansascity.com/2012/12/02/3945413/harrington-to-portland-thats-news.html. Dammit, Cubbie.

 
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Posted by on December 2, 2012 in Timbers

 

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Survival.

Survival. I think that’s what we were all focused on today. At least I was.

Genetically ginger, I melt at about 82 degrees. When I got out of my car to hop on a train to Jeld-Wen this afternoon, it was 92. MAX was blissfully empty and air-conditioned. I briefly considered staying on board and riding all the way out to Hillsboro just to stay out of the heat.

But I didn’t. I dutifully went and got my wristband and retired to the air-conditioned darkness of the Bitter End where, in a further effort to survive the heat, I drank water instead of beer.

When it came time to head back to the field and get in line, it occurred to me that I could just stay here and watch the match, in the comfort of the darkened bar, with no line for beer and no chance of heatstroke.

But I didn’t. I rallied and got in line. In the sun. In 90+ degree heat.

Because that’s how we love.

People are complaining that we didn’t get the three points. People are complaining that the pace of the game was slow. People are complaining.

Shut it. It was 92 degrees. We didn’t lose. I’ll take the point.

I got the feeling that’s what we were playing for anyway. I’d like to think our boys were playing to win, but the realist in me (a creature you probably won’t hear from often) knows that they were playing to survive.

Five-zip at Dallas was stupid. I’m still shaking my head over that. The realist, brought out probably due to this weather, was waiting for another blow-out.

And she was pleasantly surprised to make it to the half scoreless.

The other me, the Believe Beyond Reason girl, was looking to a Boyd-Richards pairing to make things work. She was disappointed to find Alexander out of the eighteen (the Realist is having chicken and egg thoughts about this: did his dinner with Kevin Hartman Saturday night put him on someone’s shit list?). She knew Dike would replace Boyd in the second, but she thought Dike would hit the back of the net at least twice.

There’s the problem: neither the Realist nor Believe Beyond Reason girl have any idea what’s in the minds of our boys. What are they playing for? Pride in the badge? Love of club? The paycheck?

Here’s what we saw today:

Kimura’s run to the North End before the match started. Again. I love him more every time he does it. It tells me he’s in it for us and because of that, I’ll forgive a lot of errors.

Franck Songo’o and his post-match angry-tweet. He’s done that a couple times now and he’s winning me over. I like that he’s pissed that he didn’t win. He should be.

David Horst is back. Less so in this match than in the last, but his presence was still felt. I’m looking to you, David, to continue to play all-out. You are key. (Also, thanks ever so much for kicking Brek Shea in the face. Job well done.)

Diego Chara. I shudder to think where we’d be without him.

So, now we have ten days to mull over a draw at home against a team we should have beaten three times. Ten days before we face the only team with fewer points than we have.

Ten days. Ten days to craft a plan that will bring us as many points as possible. I still want that playoff spot. Yes: still.

Keep it up, Rose City. Don’t give up.

Also, both Scots started and neither spontaneously combusted. I’ll call that a win.

 
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Posted by on August 5, 2012 in Timbers

 

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Wait. What?

I have absolutely no idea what just happened.

The numbers keep playing in my head: 81% pass completion, 61% possession, 200 more passes than the opposing team. Three goals at home, including a brace from Boyd (I’m totally claiming credit for that, by the way).

And we still lost. Isn’t that something?

There were some fine performances on the pitch tonight. And there were some real stinkers. But I’ll leave that to the experts to break down for you.

Here’s what I saw:

I saw Kosuke Kimura. I saw him come to Jeld-Wen, ready to play. I saw, through misty eyes, his salute to team and TA when he came to the North End pre-match, pounding the badge on his chest. I will never, ever forget that.

I saw a changed team. I saw a team that dominated and took an early lead. I saw a team who let that lead slip away but, instead of giving up, dug in and did everything within their power to get it back.

In the end, their efforts were not rewarded. It was just a weird, weird game.

People are, as expected, having a pretty good go at Gavin. I get it. But I’m not there yet.

If the changes I saw take hold – stronger offense, more heart, perseverance in the face of great adversity – then we’re in for a really fun ride, indeed. And then there’s this: Gavin was a defender. I can’t imagine he’ll let what happened tonight slide.

So, I came out of a 5-3 home defeat not upset, not disappointed (as I just told someone on Twitter, I think this week has sucked all the disappoint out of me), but hopeful.

Hopeful and ready for what’s to come.

Except Kenny Miller to Vancouver. I wasn’t ready for that at all.

 
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Posted by on July 15, 2012 in Timbers

 

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