I’m not going to lie to you, my dear and gentle readers. My hens were off in their prediction. They saw the win but they didn’t foresee the assault on our collective blood pressure. I began to despair. My pride in the powers of my hens and my ability to read them had taken a beating. My pride that vegetates and springs weeds and rank flowers of self-pity as soon as my own resources fail me took a beating. (I may or may not have stolen some of those words from Thomas Merton.)
I decided that pride was not the way. Rather, I should focus on the joy, the elation, the ebullience I experienced. Honestly, the best way I can explain how I felt when that glorious, crack-filled, Dior-drapped, sunovabitch led us to the promised land
is the phrase commotio cordis.
Having taken a few days to convalesce, my beloved hens and I were ready to take on the world. We emerged from the compound and traipsed about town. Driving along Lamar Blvd., we approach 12th street. At this moment, I see San Julius begin to get antsy. Her glances led me to pull into House Park’s parking lot.
We hop the fence and stroll around the sideline. There’s a wistful look in San Julius’ eyes; a look I’ve never seen before. She was remembering something.
We hopped back into my whip (a 1986 Aries K car, powder blue, 2-door coupe, in case you’ve forgotten) and wended our way back to the compound. Hopping out of the car, San Julius beckoned me to follow her to her coop.
I crawled into the dank and musty coop she calls home. Under her bedding, which was made from the fabric of our lives,
I saw some photos peeking out. I pulled them out. Gobsmacked. Absolutely stunned at what I saw:
My beloved hen has a long history with House Park and soccer! She was a huge Aztex fan! I had no idea.
I turned to look at her. She was here at the compound, but was far afield. I can only imagine her visions of Eberly’s Army, Kris Trypak, Zack Pope and others from those halcyon days of innocent soccer.
But, peeking out from the edge, I spied one last photo.
She’s been stanning Adrian Healey forever! Her salad days spent pining for the gent who manages our next opponent. As Archimedes would say, “Eureka!” Her pained glances, drooping head, slow movements. It all makes sense. She loves Adrian. She loves his contribution to Austin becoming a soccer city. She’s conflicted.
Never one to dance around a topic, I ask her, “Who’s winning this weekend?”
San Julius takes one, labored step to the right and no more.
Yes, my dear. I understand.
El FC 1-0 First Loves
PS: I have to add this. I know MUFC don’t play in Milwaukee, but I feel the urge to share this Minnesota-based, brilliant piece of American cinema.