“EXILE ON BLAKE ST“
Feel so hypnotized, can’t describe the scene.
Its all mesmerized all that inside me.
The sunshine bores the daylights out of me.
Chasing shadows moonlight mystery.
Headed for the overload,
Splattered on the dirty road,
Kick me like you’ve kicked before,
I can’t even feel the pain no more.
And I only get my rocks off while I’m dreaming,
I only get my rocks off while I’m sleeping.
“Rocks Off” Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones re-issued their 1972 masterpiece EXILE ON MAIN ST last month,giving us a fresh listen to their classic tunes. In this age of the back story, it’s interesting to hear how the whole recording thing went down too- the Stones escape England to a French countryside manor, assemble a remote studio and slug it out, jamming day and night while Keith Richards got his blood changed (urban legend, truth or consequence?) and probably rose from the dead a handful of times. The record is a classic, full of dirt blues and sentiments and is the sound of the world’s most popular band at the time, in exile. I love it. It is the music of the someone on the outside looking in. “Rocks Off” is the ripping lead track, busting hell out the gate and setting the tone for a roller coaster of rock greatness..
Tuesday night at Coors Field felt a lot like this for me. A little EXILE ON BLAKE ST perhaps. While these Rockies are not the Rolling Stones of baseball, they are the outsiders looking in, trying to make their move in the NL West. A bit of a swagger and rhythm and guts with a bit a flash when you look close. They are a team to embrace and hang onto for the ride (if this is what you dig – and WHY should thee not??) especially when the Boston Red Sox roll into town!
Let’s get it straight, I am a Sox fan to the core but these Rox are compelling and totally worthy of my fancy. I dig the idea of the “home” team and coming to terms with the Rockies relates to me finally coming to terms to living in CO (long story – some other time). It helps that they are in the NL too. As part of a previously mentioned plan, Rockpile Ranter (D) and I agreed to attend the game and blog each others team. I love this stuff because I love baseball. It is more to me than a game. It is a reflection of so many things that life hands you. It is a marker of time. It is a mirror to gaze into – abstractly, lazily, intently, lovingly,etc, take your pick – and see yourself in a new light. Players become heroes and victims, outcomes are equal parts skill and luck,the lights, the stadiums – surreal and totally cool when you let the magic work. Of course, hoards of Boston fans can kill the buzz (15,000 or so can make it seem like you at Fenway) for the locals, but it’s good for biz and and a sell-out is a sell-out. Plus the Sox were visiting for the first time since 2007 and we all know how that series ended. Payback is on everyone’s mind but it’s only June and there is lots of ball to play. For the Rox this series could emerge as a defining moment in their early season. For the Sox, it is the chance to continue their hot play and keep pace in the suddenly tight AL East. For the fans, it is the opportunity to indulge in rooting for their teams and connecting to the meanings of the game. Whatever those meanings are, I leave it up to you.
The Rockies throw Chacin against Lester and for the most part the game is well-played and somewhat low key. The Sox squander 2 bases loaded opportunities and the Rox strike for a run against Lester on a Helton RBI. The Sox line-up has been on fire as of late but the bats are not here tonight and the Rox are patient and confident and seem to be ready for the A list Red Sox team.
Rocker and Ranter
D and I met prior during the Sox BP (sorry – Batting Rehersal) and confer about just how the hell we are going to tackle this blogging challenge. He has caught his 100th ball courtesy of an un-identified Sox swinger. Great start for his blog effort since snagging balls is his thing. He has his camera ready to go and is poised for some classic Ranter style. For me, Coors Field feels a bit intimidating tonight. Maybe it’s the sea of Sox shirts. Maybe it’s the blazing 90+ degree heat. Maybe it’s the fender bender that I got in in Coors Lot B parking the damn car (Hey kids – always look before you blindly open the door when you are parked in tight spots. Hey parents – PAY ATTENTION!!! Hey parking lot attendant – don’t wave me into a spot like a maniac and then take off for the next vehicle before everyone is safe. The lots here are like parking at a ski resort but stoned lot attendants at A-Basin make far better guides!)) Maybe it’s the fact that while I am psyched to see the game and write about it through Rox Eyes, I am uneasy about turning the tables. I have not seen a live Sox game since 2004 and I committed to THIS?? I settle in with with E and D and J in our right field seats and decide to soak up the atmosphere. This is what it is all about; indulge in dogs and beers and snacks, talk some smack with the my fellow watchers and we’re grooving.
E and D and J
As the game progresses and the sun goes down and it finally cools off, I ponder a myriad of relevant and slightly irrelevant topics; will this series mirror the 2004 3 game set where the Rox won the first 2 and lost the 3rd and the Sox ended up rolling to WS #1? Will the Rox get something going as a team and make the summer special for CO? Will the Yanks and Rays falter in their respective IL series and will the Sox sneak into first? Will Geico screw me and raise my premiums? When will tatoo culture finally stop and when did America become so tacky and lacking style? Why is there something every half inning to “entertain” the fans (do you really care what little colored motorcycle wins the race to Coors on the JumboTron)? I suppose you could call it “Ad Infinitum”. I try on the Rockies goggles and see a really good team standing tall against the Sox. There are flashes of the excitement they generated in previous seasons and I find myself committing to returning to Coors to cheer them on. Hopefully against a NL West team in Sept, charging towards the playoffs and post season baseball.
The game ends in favor of the Rox (2-1) courtesy of a late insurance run on a left field flare, a walk and a strange ghost hopping grounder over Scutaro’s head. The Sox get one in the top of the 9th and Coors sighs a collective sigh of relief at the final out and everyone shuffles out into the night – Sox and Rox fans – Exiles on Blake St. The hometowners looking for sign of their season and the “visitors” trying to re-connect to their hometowns and their memories. Rox off indeed. Damn I love this game.