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Cubs stress-texting: Had to switch to the Hawks game.

Byline: Jim Davis

Stress texting thread for Game 4, National League championship series, starting with the opening pitch:

(nothing)

(crickets)

9:31 p.m. Thursday:

Feez: Stress texting is over for the baseball season.

3:22 a.m. Friday:

Me: I turned on the Blackhawks game, fell asleep by 9.

Yeah, the departure of our beloved Cubs was so painful, buddies Joel, Feez and I couldnt even bring ourselves to text about it. The grueling five-game victory over the Washington Nationals in the NLDS and the first four games against the Dodgers in the NLCS were entirely different. All sorts of our usual bellyaching about the bullpen, lack of timely hitting and second-guessing some of Joe Maddons decisions. So, until next season, here are the final stress texting highlights from the NLDS. I apologize for the irrelevances, but honestly, theyre more entertaining than our play-by-play angst.

Game 1, Oct. 6:

Joel: The Nats are a great team despite their manager. Any one of us could manage that team.

Feez: Herman Franks could. Bob Scheffing? Lou Boudreau? Jim Marshall? Stick Michaels.

Joel: Lee Elia? In his honor Im going to find his rant (in 1983 about Cubs fans) on YouTube.

Me: That is truly priceless.

Joel: Its funnier to listen with the bleeps.

Game 2, Oct. 7:

Feez: No Joel?

Me: Went to bed early.

Feez: Too stressful to watch live.

Joel: Biting my toenails.

Feez: Picturing that. Not good.

Game 3, Oct. 9:

Me: Stress knitting!!! (sent with a video of the missus sitting at the bar, knitting. "Its very helpful," she tells another woman, "because this is very stressful. Its my new postseason tradition.")

The boys neglect to check in, so:

Me: Hey, what happened to you (expletives)? Sloppiest win in history, but it still counts!!!!!!!!!

Feez: We bought a car this afternoon ... softball game at 6:30. (Yes, this man still plays softball at age 68!)

Game 4, Oct. 11:

(After rainout when Nats manager Dusty Baker says pitching ace Steven Strasburg might not be available):

Joel: Dusty says Stras is allergic to mold and our mold count is very high right now.

Feez: Youve got to be kidding.

Feez: Mold trumps starting in an elimination game. Bring on the mold!

(Later in the day ...)

Me: Now theyre saying SS will start, and Dusty is being committed.

(Strasburg pitches a gem, Cubs lose.)

Me: New training regimen for all pitchers: Mold ingestation.

Game 5, Oct. 12, Cubs win series with a 9-8 nailbiter:

Me: Well, boys, heres the good news: we won a series against a great team while playing some pretty (semi-expletive) baseball.

Joel: Boys, I look forward to more games. More stress texting. More fun. Enjoy this! Talk soon. Go Cubs!

Feez: We boys may need treatment for PTSD before this is all over.

Joel: A caller on The Score said it was a great victory, but it felt like falling down the stairs!

So, yeah, the playoffs are pretty stressful for us longtime fans. But its nothing compared to what the Daily Herald coverage team Cubs expert Bruce Miles and columnists Burt Constable, Mike Imrem and Barry Rozner went through to produce great journalism, much of it late at night when deadlines loomed big.

Little causes much more stress in the newsroom than Election Night, when we produce an inordinate number of stories on deadline. Happens once or twice a year.

But as the sports guys say during the playoffs, "Every night is Election Night."

jdavis@dailyherald.com
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Publication:Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Date:Oct 22, 2017
Words:583
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