The Streak

“I got greedy. Flew too close to the sun… on wings of pastrami.”

— George Costanza

On Friday morning, I dug into the recesses of my closet and dug out one of my most cherished T-shirts. My paper-thin navy blue K-9 Obedience Training Club of Menomonee Falls T-shirt with outline of the state on the left breast and the equally thin kelly green Bark River Campgrounds T-Shirt with the crumbled painting of a gang of raccoons are in extremely limited rotation. The 2003 and 2004 vintage Fuck ’em Bucky T-shirts are all but retired — the 2005 model still sees heavy action, and I intended to swaddle my firstborn in their cardinal red and white.

But I had long ago taken the The Streak out of commission.

This shirt commemorated the 1987 Milwaukee Brewers, who started the season by winning their first 13 games. This included what the shirt calls the “1st Brewer no hitter” pitched by Juan Nieves. Little would those folks know that 21 years later, we would still be waiting for another.

When the Brewers won the last game before the All-Star break… and then the next seven on the road… I thought we might see it again. Every time C.C. pitches, I’m on a no-hitter watch. We had also seen the team sweep the Astros at home earlier this season, but it just wasn’t to be.

So I’ll just thank the good people at Print Works, where they may be, for crafting this artifact, and try to remember the next winning streak starts tomorrow.

One last word about the Cardinals series… They’re all right, those birdos. I remember calling my friend Danny to see what he was up to one summer afternoon in 2003.

“John?! We’re at the game!”

“What game, the Brewers are off today.”

“No, we’re at Busch Stadium… in St. Louis!”

“You sound like you’re having a pretty good time.” (background shouting) “What was that?”

“Oh, that’s Joe. He wants me to tell you about the beer.”

“What about the beer?”

“John… They have 32-ounce beers here. We’ve each had three of them!”


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