Tuesday, March 5, 2019
The Silver Linings Playbook Chapter 27
As If He Were Yoda and I Were Luke Skywalker Training on the Dagobah SystemWhen we finish discussing our Kubb tourney victory and Mrs. chuckels admireful ability to render an exact handleness of Brian Dawkinss mountaint on the thug of a school bus, I pick the black recliner and fork fall I am a little depressed.Whats wrong? he says, pulling the lever and raising his footrest.Terrell Owens. drop cloth nods, as if he were expecting me to suffer up the wide receivers name.I did non insufficiency to reproof virtu all in ally this earlier, exactly it was reported that Terrell Owens (or T.O.) tried to kill himself on September 26. tidings reports stated that T.O. overdosed on a pain medication. Later, afterward T.O. was released from the hospital, he state he did not try to kill himself, and then e precise unrivaled began to think he was crazy.I remember T.O. as a young 49er, just Owens was not on the 49ers roster when I watched the Eagles play in San Francisco a some we eks ago. What I learned from take awaying the sports pages was that T.O. had played for the Eagles when I was in the evil place, and he had helped the Birds get to Super Bowl XXXIX, which I do not remember at all. ( peradventure this is proper, since the Eagles missed, but not remembering dummy up makes me rule crazy.) T.O. apparently held unwrap for more(prenominal) money the next year, said large things some Eagles QB Donovan McNabb, was suspended for the second half of the season, and then was actually flash back from the team, so he signed with the very team Eagles fans hate closely the Cowboys. And because of this, everyone in Philadelphia currently hates T.O. more than just about anyone else on the planet.T.O.? Dont annoy about him, cliff says. Dawkins is going to hit him so hard that Owens pass on be afraid to catch any balls at the Linc.Im not unhappy about T.O. making catches and scoring touch overmatchs.Cliff looks at me for a second, as if he does not cu t how to respond, and then says, Tell me what worries you.My father refers to T.O. as a psychopathic oral contraceptive pill popper. And on the phone this week, Jake also make jokes about T.O. taking pills, calling Owens a nutter.Why does this bother you?Well, the reports I read in the sports pages claimed that T.O. was possibly battling depression.Yes.Well, I say, that would suggest perhaps he needs therapy.And?If Terrell Owens is really depressed or mentally unstable, why do the large number I love use it as an excuse to talk mediocrely about him?Cliff takes a deep breath. Hmmm.Doesnt my public address system rede that Im a psychopathic pill popper too?As your healer, I bottom of the inning confirm that you are clearly not psychopathic, Pat. scarce Im on all sorts of pills.And unless you are not abusing your medications.I can see what Cliff means, but he doesnt really netherstand how I retrieve which is a mix of very complicated and hard-to-convey emotions, I realize s o I drop the subject.When the Dallas Cowboys come to Philadelphia, the fat mens tent and the Asiatic aggression bus are combined to create a super companionship that again features a Kubb tournament on Astroturf, satellite television, Indian kabobs, and unt grey-haired beer. But I cannot concentrate on the fun, because all around me is hatred.The prototypic gear things I notice are the homemake T-shirts other tailgaters are purchasing and selling and wearing. So many different slogans and images. One has a sketch of a small boy urinating on the Dallas star, and the caption reads dallas sucks. t.o. swallows pills. Another shirt has a large prescription medicine bottle with the universal skull-and-crossbones poison emblem on the label and terrell owens written underneath. Yet another version features the pill bottle on the front line and a gun on the back, under which the caption reads T.O., if at first you dont succeed, buy a gun. A nigh tailgater has nailed T.O.s old Ea gles jersey to a ten-foot cross, which is also covered with orange prescription bottles that look exactly like mine. People are burning their old T.O. jerseys in the parking lot human-size dolls in T.O. jerseys are strung up so people can hit them with bats. And even though I do not like any Dallas Cowboy, I feel sort of bad for Terrell Owens because perhaps he really is a sad cat who is having trouble with his mind. Who knows, maybe he really did try to kill himself? And yet everyone mocks him, as if his mental health is a joke or maybe they want to push him over the edge and would like nothing more than to see T.O. dead.Because of my poor throws, Cliff and I get smash-uped out of the Kubb tournament early, losing the five bucks my brother fronted me, and this is when Cliff asks me to help him move some India ghastly Ale out of the Asian attack bus. When we are inside of the bus, he closes the accession and says, Whats wrong?Nothing, I say.You werent even looking to see wher e your batons landed, you were so distract during the Kubb games.I say nothing.Whats wrong? Youre not in your leather seat.Cliff sits down, pats the bus seat, and says, Pleather depart puzzle to do today.I sit down in the seat across from Cliff and say, I just feel bad for T.O. Thats all.Hes getting millions of dollars to endure this type of criticism. And he thrives on it. He brings it on himself with those touchdown dances and the hoopla. And these people dont really want T.O. to die they just dont want him to perform well today. Its all in good fun.Now, I know what Cliff means, but it doesnt seem like good fun to me. And irrespective of whether T.O. is a millionaire or not, Im not sure T-shirts encouraging anyone to shoot himself in the head should be condoned by my therapist. But I dont say anything. cover version outside the bus I see that Jake and Ashwini are in the nett game of the Kubb tournament, so I try to cheer for them and block out the hatred that surrounds me.Insi de the Linc, all throughout the first half, the bunch sings, O.D. O.D., O.D., O.D. O.D. O.D. Jake explains that the crowd used to sing, T.O. T.O., T.O., T.O. T.O. T.O. back when Owens was an Eagle. I watch Owens on the sideline, and even though he doesnt have many catches yet, he seems to be dancing to the stave of the crowds O.D. song, and I wonder if he is really so immune to lxx thousand people mocking his near overdose or if he really feels differently inside. Again I cant help feeling bad for the guy. I wonder what I would do if seventy thousand people mocked my forgetting the last few years of my life.By halftime Hank Baskett has two catches for twenty-five yards, but the Eagles are losing 21 17.All throughout the second half, Lincoln monetary Field is alive we Eagles fans know that first place in the NFC eastbound is at stake.With just under eight minutes to go in the third, everything changes.McNabb throws a long one down the left side of the field. Everyone in m y section stands to see what will happen. Number 84 catches the ball in Dallas territory, puts a move on the defender, takes off for the end zone, and then I am in the air. Under me are Scott and Jake. Im riding high on their shoulders. Everyone in our section is high-fiving me because Hank Baskett has at long last scored his first NFL touchdown an eighty-seven-yarder and of course I am wearing my Baskett jersey. The Eagles are winning, and I am so happy that I forget all about T.O. and start to think about my dad watching at home on his huge television, and I wonder if maybe the TV cameras caught me when I was riding high on Jakes and Scotts shoulders. Maybe Dad saw a life-size me celebrating on his flat screen, and maybe he is even proud.A series of tense moments get our tastets beating at the end of the fourth quarter, when Dallas is driving, down 31 24. A score will send the game into OT. But Lito Sheppard intercepts Bledsoe and returns the pick for a TD, and the whole stad ium sings the Eagles fight song and chants the letters, and the day is ours.When the clock ticks down, I look for T.O. and see him sprint off the field and into the locker live without even shaking the hand of one single Eagle. I still feel bad for him.Jake and Scott and I exit the Linc and run into the Asian Invasion which is easy to spot from far away because it consists of l Indian men, commonly clumped together, all in Brian Dawkins jerseys. upright look for fifty number 20s, they of all time say. Cliff and I run up to each other and high-five and grouse and yell, and then all fifty Indian men start chanting, Baskett, Baskett, Baskett And I am so happy I pick little Cliff up and hoist him onto my shoulders and carry him back to the Asian Invasion bus as if he were Yoda and I were Luke Skywalker training on the Dagobah System in the middle section of The Empire Strikes Back, which is as I told you before one of my all-time favorite movies. E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES we chant so m any time as we navigate the crowds and find our way back to our spot coffin nail the Wachovia Center, where the fat men are waiting with ice-cold celebration beers. I keep hugging Jake and high-fiving Cliff and chest bumping the fat men and relation with the Indians. I am so happy. I am so impossibly happy.When the Asian Invasion drops me off in front of my house, its late, so I ask Ashwini not to blow the Eagles chant horn and he reluctantly agrees although when the bus rounds the corner at the end of my street, I hear fifty Indian men chant, E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES I cant help smiling as I enter my parents home.I am ready for Dad. After such(prenominal) a big win a win that puts the Eagles in first place surely Dad will want to talk to me. But when I enter the family room, no one is there. No beer bottles on the floor, no dishes in the sink. In fact, the whole house looks spotless.Dad? Mom? I say, but no one answers. I saw both of their cars in the driveway when I came home, so I am very confused. I begin to climb the steps, and the house is deadly quiet. I check my bedroom, and my beds made and the room is empty. So I knock on my parents bedroom door, but no one answers. I push the door assailable and directly wish I hadnt.Your father and I made up after the Eagles victory, Mom says with a funny smile. He aims to be a changed man.The canvas is pulled up to their necks, but somehow I know my parents are in the raw underneath the covers.Your boy Baskett healed the family, my father says. He was a divinity out there on the field today. And with the Eagles in first place, I thought, Why not make up with Jeanie?Still, I cannot speak.Pat, maybe youd like to go for a run? my mom suggests. Maybe just a little half-hour run?I close their bedroom door. bandage I change into a tracksuit, I think I hear my parents bed squeak, and the house seems to shake a little too. So I slip on my sneakers and run down the stairs and out the front door. I sprint across the par k, run around to the back of the Websters house, and knock on Tiffanys door. When she answers, shes in some sort of nightgown and her face looks confused.Pat? What are you My parents are having sex, I explain. Right now.Her eyes widen. She smiles and then laughs. Just let me get changed, she says, and then shuts the door.We walk for hours all around Collingswood. At first I ramble on and on about T.O., Baskett, my parents, Jake, the Asian Invasion, my wedding pictures, my mothers ultimatum actually working everything but Tiffany does not say anything in response. When I run out of words, we simply walk and walk and walk, and finally we are in front of the Websters house and it is time to say good night. I stick my hand out and say, Thanks for listening. When it is clear that Tiffanys not going to shake, I start to walk away.Turn around, bright eyes, Tiffany says, which is a very weird thing for her to say, because my eyes are brown and very dull, but of course I turn around. Im going to give you something that will confuse you, and maybe even make you mad. I dont want you to open it until you are in a very relaxed mood. Tonight is out of the question. delay a few days, and when you are feeling happy, open this letter. She pulls a tweed business envelope out of her jacket pocket and hands it to me. attribute it away in your pocket, she says, and I do as I am told, mostly because Tiffany looks so deathly serious. I will not be running with you until you give me your answer. I will leave you alone to think. unheeding of what you decide, you cannot tell anyone about what is inside of that envelope. Understand? If you tell anyone even your therapist Ill know by looking in your eyes, and I will neer speak to you again. Its best if you simply follow my directions.My heart is pounding. What is Tiffany talking about? All I want to do is open the envelope now.You have to wait at least forty-eight hours before you open that. recognize sure you are in a good m ood when you read the letter. Think about it, and then give me your answer. Remember, Pat, I can be a very valuable friend to you, but you do not want me as an enemy.I remember the story Ronnie told me about how Tiffany lost her job, and I begin to feel very afraid.