There are certain days that I love every year. Some obvious and some not so obvious.
Of course there are days I hate too. I hate the entire Christmas month. I’m not too fond of Thanksgiving either. St. Paddy’s day is pretty much take it or leave it too. If I can avoid the drunken Irish morons in the city, then it isn’t so bad.
But there are a couple of great days. Halloween is a great day. I like that you can be anyone or anything for a day, and no one questions you. I also like that every respectable woman dresses like a 10 dollar whore.
The Saturday after Labor Day is great too. The beaches are empty. It makes no sense; it’s still summer, the water is still warm, the sun is still hot, and yet no one goes to the beach, it’s like it’s been outlawed.
The annual Third Avenue festival in Bay Ridge is always a personal favorite of mine as well. When I was younger, it was always the week after my birthday, which meant that I was entitled to start carousing on the 20th, and continuing until sundown the following Sunday. I don’t remember a lot of those festivals. In fact, my last bout of inebriation coincides with the 3rd Ave Festival. I don’t remember much of that day either.
In the subsequent years, it was always a celebratory day for me; being able to walk through the crowded streets, holding my head high, knowing that I was going to have a great time and still remember it in the morning. From age 35 on, it was the day that I got to renew friendships with long forgotten acquaintances, and run into all those girls that turned their noses up at me in high school.
“Hi, I’m Jim. Remember me? Now I’m hot and you look like a water buffalo, and you have two miserable animals for children. Ok. Have a great day.”
Since I turned 45, I can’t really say that anymore, but it was a great 10 year run.
And then of course, there is today. Opening Day. The greatest day of them all. The day when everything is new, everyone is equal, and hope springs eternal.
At the same time, it carries a whiff of melancholia; a yearning for that lost exuberance of our youth. It brings with it, the rush of memories from seasons past, and merges it with the sights and smells of the present Spring.
And this year, Opening day coincides with Easter Sunday, the perfect kickoff to a new season and the promise of things to renewal.
For those of us baseball fans here in New York, the pundits of the blogosphere are predicting doom and gloom for both NY baseball franchises. For the Yankees, they have been trying to throw dirt on them for the past 5 years. Judging by the rash of injuries and the overall age of the ballclub, they may finally be right, but that matters none on opening day.
Opening day is the perfect day. Unless, of course, the Yankees lose.
Or if it rains.