I’m used to strange happenings and scenarios in opera. One is advised to adopt a “suspension of belief” in order to fully enjoy some of opera’s more ludicrous plots and dialogues.
I’ve heard of love at first sight, but are we really supposed to believe, for example, that Rudolfo and Mimi fall in love within thirty minutes of La Boheme having started? Anyone trying to make sense of Il Trovatore or La Gioconda should probably have their head examined. And as many beautiful voices as I’ve heard sing Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly in my lifetime, I don’t think one of them looked fifteen years old.
The 2008 World Series has certainly had its share of unbelievable events thus far. To cite but a few:
1. Is this the first time a five-man infield has been employed in a World Series game? O.K., it didn’t work this time, but it made for a very suspense-filled ending of Game 3. According to ESPN’s Jim Caple, Maddon wouldn’t discount a six-man infield as a strategy in the future, although he hasn’t done so yet. He did, however, use the five-man infield two previous times this season as well as a four-man outfield against Ryan Howard in an interleague game in 2006.
2. Some of the umpiring calls have been farcical. (My reaction exactly, Evan.) Even the umpires are admitting they’ve really blow it with numerous calls in the series. The missed calls would’ve been frustrating regardless, but the fact that these were made in the season in which replay review finally made its debut puts these blunders more directly in the spotlight.
3. Prior to this World Series, there had never been a rain-shortened World Series game nor a suspended World Series game. Monday’s rainfall in Philadelphia prompted a multi-day suspension of Game 5 that is scheduled to restart tonight–in inning 6–in Philadelphia. I don’t know whether or not rain is forecast, but I did read that the expected windchill is to be in the twenties.
The suspension is unique in and of itself, but the incompletion of the game and the players and officials taking things up tonight where they left off on Monday night has created some here-to-fore unseen events as a result.
A. As of last night, one could go to StubHub to purchase previously unavailable World Series Game 5 tickets from anywhere between $599 to $3.500. The inability of fans to use tickets for the remainder of the game has meant that (1) more than 46,000 fans will be able to say they were at Game 5 of the World Series and (2) if the Phillies win tonight, those fans that saw only the conclusion have bragging rights as truly being there when the Phillies won over those who saw the first five innings. It also means that two people could rightly say that they had occupied the identical seat for the World Series Game 5. And each could’ve paid full price–but more likely well over that–to to do so.
B. Because of their unexpected overnight stay (which turned into TWO nights) , officials for the Rays desperately began calling hotels in the Philadelphia area on Monday evening. After finding out that there were no rooms–not even cots–they finally found lodging for the team and staff in Wilmington, Delaware..
C. I don’t know what Citizens’ Bank Park has planned, but it is possible that a Seventh Inning Stretch could take place after only one and one-half innings of play tonight.
D. Similarly, will beer sales be cut off after two innings of play?
Unfortunately, I won’t be able to watch tonight: I’m performing Madama Butterfly at the MET. I have been getting in the spirit today, though, wearing my Cliff Floyd Rays shirt that–perfect timing–arrived in the mail yesterday.
Only time will tell how this drama will play out and how long it might take. (The opera character who is mortally wounded but continues to sing for another whole page comes to mind.) I can’t wait to finish my performance tonight and find out what other mad scenes or grand scenas–besides those made by the Phillies fans in the stands, of course–might’ve taken place. So far at least, it’s been quite a show!