Last night, on a typical cold and rainy March evening in Portland, I got to witness a little bit of history. OK, nothing momentous, but I did get to see the MLS’ Portland Timbers play their first game in Portland when they beat Chivas USA 2-0 at the University of Portland’s Merlo Field. Now, some of you might be asking why I was so excited over a soccer game when the Timbers for years played in what amounted to a AAA league. Well, there’s finally another major league team in town besides the Trail Blazers, and I got to see their first game.
As I mentioned, the game was played in the rain- sheets of rain, actually- so possession was difficult and offense was tough to come by. The game’s first corner kick didn’t come until after the 80th minute, and the two goals the Timbers scored (in the 84th and 85th minutes) were more rewards for persistence than anything else. Still, it was a victory, and it was a little local soccer history that I was fortunate enough to be a part of. A good time was had by…well, me, actually. My girlfriend apparently was paying attention when her mother told her not to go out in the rain. She spent the evening in front of a roaring fire. I spent 3 hours outside in a cold driving rain with 5000 of my closest friends…so who’s the dumbass now? ;-)
I did learn some lessons, though (besides the wisdom of the whole “don’t go out in the rain” thing):
1) The time to discover that the rain coat you’d convinced yourself was “waterproof” instead of merely “water-resistant” is not when you’re sitting in a driving rain…and you know you will be for the next three hours.
2) Rain pants are a great concept that only works if you actually own a pair AND ARE WEARING THEM WHEN YOU NEED THEM. Yes, rain pants aren’t something you’ll probably use an awful lot, but when you need them, you really, really need them- especially when you’re sitting in the rain in a pair of denim jeans.
3) If you’re going to be out in the rain for an extended period of time, you might want to ensure that your collapsible umbrella doesn’t look like it was backed over by an F-150. Oh, and a cotton hat? Yeah, why not just wear a sponge on your head??
Let this be a lesson to you kids. Don’t be a dumbass. Trust me on this one; Uncle Jack ain’t lying….
Still and all, it was a good time. Finally, I got to watch top-flight professional soccer in my hometown, and we now have a top-flight league represented in Portland. OK, so it’s not the English Premier League…but the quality of the soccer is generally pretty good and very entertaining. And seeing the Timbers’ first game in Portland was worth getting soaked.
Game on, eh??