They all said I
went out, but I remember thinking that if I don't start breathing pretty soon
I'm going to die. I thought I could see people around me, but it was like
looking up from under water at people looking down.
After a while I
came around, and Howie and Fitzy got me up and walked me around a little until
I started breathing again, but not very well. And then I started to get
All that romantic
stuff about being the last one to go down with my hussars, Delacroix-like, in
blue and gold, was gone. I was back in the jungle.
The monster had
broken our rule about hitting a runner in the open field with your shoulder.
What really made me mad was that if I had known he was going to do it, I could
have turned up into him to protect myself. I had been expecting hands, hard,
and I knew I'd go down, but I wasn't ready for the shoulder. I was real
Now, I don't get
mad, because my father told me once that only dogs get mad. I also learned a
long time ago that it's the ones who don't get mad who win the ball games, but
I was of no mind to heed that kind of advice.
Somehow I got
back on the field, and there was some kind of penalty, and we had the first
down. In the huddle they could all see I was going to do something awful, and I
was thinking how I could throw a football pretty hard and at two or three yards
Packs," Fitzy said, sensing my thoughts. "Me and Howie will take care
And now I'm glad
I didn't do anything, because Fitzy and Howie took care of it on the next play.
They were going to high-low the monster, and they said to call a pitchout. I
did. The ball came back, and I pitched out to the back and just stood there and
The guy from
Perth Amboy came in again as hard as always, and Howie caught him at the knees
from the inside, and then Fitzy came in on the blind side high, and it was all
He went straight
up, hung there in the air like a ski jumper who had gotten too far back and
lost control, then down, and he didn't get up again for a long time. When he
did he walked slowly over to the bench and sat down. He played a little more
later in the game, but his rush didn't have too much on it anymore. And after
that day I always had a good feeling when I walked out on the field when we had