Finding Mudville: Top Five to Cry

  • Thursday, November 7, 2013

The World Series celebration for example, it gets me every time, though the whole mosh pit romps are lacking in the spontaneous insanity of the pitcher jumping into the arms of the catcher, or vice versa if you happen to be Yogi Berra and Don Larsen.

In the long and solitary moments on the road between Atlanta and Charleston, about five hours of them, I paused to assemble my Top Five Sports Moments That Make Me Cry – Every Time.

In order from five down to one, they are:

Number Five

South Carolina’s Cocky 2001 Space Odyssey football entrance.

This one is new to me as I only just discovered this last year. The black monolith at midfield, the playing of 2001 A Space Odyssey, the fog, then at the climactic moment the monolith drops to reveal Cocky.

How did he get there is what I want to know.

I’m misty eyed here, but no tears or sobs.

Number Four

Cincinnati Reds win the 1975 World Series.

They have finally quit showing Carlton Fisk’s 12th inning homer in Game Six and the Red Sox didn’t even win the stupid series. The play of the series in my opinion is when Pete Rose completed his iconic headfirst belly flop into third base for the go-ahead triple.

I was 17 then and had waited all my life for this moment, enduring the pain of 1970, 1972 and 1974.

Tears for sure every time I see it.

Number Three

From “The Natural” when Glenn Close stands up in the stands and Robert Redford sees her.

It’s a movie and yes, a cheesy movie, but anytime you incorporate sports and a love story in a movie, I’m a goner.

Roy Hobbs had been mired in a horrendous slump. He couldn’t hit sand if he fell off a camel. At that pivotal moment with the game on the line and Hobbs looking pathetic after a pair of miserable swings, Glenn Close stands up.

Now, shadowed in the light of the setting sun Roy can’t make her out through the sun’s glare, but he knows she’s someone special and guesses with a quizzical smile who she might be.

Then he promptly knocks the cover off the baseball – I think – but for sure hits the ball out of the park.

Tears flowing freely down my cheeks and one stifled sob.

Number Two

The Best Damn Band in the Land, THE Ohio State University Marching Band spells out Script Ohio.

Oh, Mr. Tears is here for sure. More than 80,000 Buckeye fans screaming, especially when Jack Nicklaus and Woody Hayes were given the honor to dot the “I.”

Tears as the first note is played and sobbing throughout.

Number One

The funeral of UGA VII, the University of Georgia’s beloved bulldog mascot.

He’s somebody’s pet and he died.

If this doesn’t make you cry then you have no heart.

The band plays a mournful rendition of Glory to Old Georgia as the golf cart carrying UGA VII makes the beloved bulldog’s trip between the hedges for the last time.

“Good dog.”

It turned this longtime Buckeye and Irish fan into a Georgia Bulldog fan.

Those are my Top Five. Can you top them?

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