The Australian’s survival guide to playoff baseball (part 2)

Harlan Ambrose
October 17, 2012

Check out part 1 to see how you got to this point…

The divisional series has ended, and you’ve missed the maximum amount of sick days. If you miss another day you’ll be fired, and for a moment you entertain the thought. No waking up early five days a week, no RK reports (bonus: you won’t have to worry about not knowing what RK has meant for the last six years), no Debra in accounting. It’s tempting. Then you remember bills, rent, the girlfriend, and your XBOX Live account. Getting fired isn’t an option. You’re setting up your TV to record the first Championship Series game when you realise it’s a day game. A day game in The States means waking up at 3:00 a.m. in Australia, but at least you’ll be able to watch it live and then go to work.

The ridiculously early game

You’re lying in bed fiddling with your phone. Your girlfriend keeps asking you what you’re doing, and you tell her you’re setting an alarm. Because you stayed up watching the Project Runway marathon with your girlfriend, it’s nearly midnight. That means you only have three hours until the game, and if you’re going to wake up you’ll need several alarms. Heck, make it eight. Set eight alarms like so: 2:54, 2:55, 2:56, 2:57, 2:58, 2:59, 3:00, 3:05. Give yourself a little extra at the end there just in case. Kiss your girlfriend goodnight and force your brain to shut down.

You missed all eight alarms. Luckily, your girlfriend caught every single one. Caress your slapped cheek while you put your pants on backward and your shirt inside out. Stumble into the lounge and turn on the television. Oh, remember how Project Runway was really quiet for some reason, so you turned the volume up all the way before bed? Yeah, now you do, and your girlfriend is screaming at you to turn it down. Just mute it. You can make up your own commentary anyway.

And that’s a pitch. Strike? Yeah, strike. I wonder what Derek Jeter’s toes look like. 

[php snippet=1]

Okay, you need sound. Your internal monologue sucks (and what was with the toe thing?). Unmute, turn the volume down as quickly as possible, and repeat: Sorry honey, sorry honey, sorry honey.

How’s the volume? Has she stopped screaming at you? Don’t worry, girlfriends aren’t that important. She only gives your life meaning. Go get some coffee and prepare to watch the one thing you can always rely on; the one thing that won’t mind if you forget to pick it up from the airport and instead get drunk with your buddies.


Remember how it’s really late? Yeah, you’re pretty much useless. You know how to opened the fridge to look for milk? Yeah, well you’re looking in the broom cupboard. Shut it and get to the kitchen. Making coffee is complicated. You need coffee and water and something else. Don’t bother. Take a spoon from the drawer and open the coffee packet. Is it in bean form, or ground? It doesn’t actually matter, I was just curious. Don’t bother with the water, just scoop the coffee straight into your mouth. Why are you using your hand? I told you to get a spoon.

Extra innings

It’s a nail-biting game. You managed to fall asleep only four times. Damn Joe Buck and his uninflected voice. It’s okay, you woke in time for the ninth inning, and wouldn’t you know it, it’s a tie ball game.

You hear your girlfriend stir in bedroom. Soon enough she’s standing in the doorway, looking at you. She doesn’t ask about the ground coffee around your mouth, or the packet itself that’s spilled all over the couch. She doesn’t even comment on your inside-out shirt. She just says, ‘Couldn’t you have watched a replay?’ A replay? Yeah, right. Nothing beats live baseball. Don’t tell her you fell asleep and missed the whole game. Just say the live baseball thing.

Okay, she’s gone. No need to start getting ready for work yet, but just prepare a quick game plan in your mind. Where’d you throw your work shirt when you got home last night? Oh, weren’t you meant to do the washing, too? You told her you’d done it but I’m pretty sure that hamper in the bathroom is full. That’s a hit! Bases loaded, none out. They can’t miss. You’ll have time to do the washing, get ready for work, and make it up to your girlfriend by making her breakfast. Strikeout. Don’t worry, they’re allowed one of those. There is an overwhelming amount of statistical evidence to support them scoring at least – what? Double play. Great.

Preparation between innings

Luckily it’s the playoffs. So with the advertisements and sponsor-related material, you should have roughly 45 minutes between innings. On a regular work day you would have started getting ready 15 minutes ago, but don’t stress. You normally spend an hour on YouTube watching cat videos. No, you won’t have time to do that this morning. It’s not worth losing your job over.

Spread out your tasks during each break.

Break 1:

  • Wash the coffee off your face
  • Apologise to your girlfriend
  • Put on an actual coffee pot to boil

Break 2:

  • Apologise to your girlfriend
  • Get dressed
  • Tell your girlfriend it’s too early to shout

Break 3:

  • Take the burnt coffee off the stove
  • Eat a few slices of bread (no time to toast)
  • Apologise, and really mean it this time, to your girlfriend


Are you kidding me? How is this game still going? If you don’t leave 10 minutes ago you’ll be late. And you know Debra in accounting will say something. Don’t worry, you can just take the T3 lane (that’s the carpool lane for you Americans).

Grab two brooms from the cupboard. No, that’s the fridge. The cupboard, from before. Yep that’s it. Take the brooms and put hats on them. No it doesn’t matter which team. How would I know if brooms are Twins fans? Leave the brooms by the door and sit down. Drink your coffee and just try to enjoy the game. Is she yelling again? If only she had a mute button. No! Don’t say that. Great. You said it. Yep she just stormed out. Oh terrific, she took the hat-brooms.

Oh well. You may as well relax. This game will surely end soon. Look, Joe Buck’s doing a little monologue. Hey. Hey! Are you seriously asleep right now?

[php snippet=1]

The Author:

Harlan Ambrose