This week’s nearly-home game at AT&T Park might be dubbed “The Disaster Preparedness Derby” between the Earthquakes and the Zombie Quakes. Earthquake preparedness is at the forefront of most California households’ minds, especially when their humble, if over-priced abode straddles the San Andreas or Hayward faults. Less frequently considered by San Francisco residents is the threat of a Zombie (Quakes or otherwise) Apocalypse - I know my own disaster kit in this instance consists of a single, slightly splintered cricket bat, based solely on what I’ve learned from watching Simon Pegg’s hilarious movie Shaun of the Dead. Having a good solid piece of wood in your hand is quite often useful.
Last year, maybe because of the movie, the Centers for Disease Control realized there was an egregious omission from their web site and designed a web page to prepare for such a Zombie attack. Now illuminated on their pages are the symptoms of Ataxic Neurodegenerative Satiety Deficiency Syndrome, which is caused by an infectious agent after being passed on via bites and contact with bodily fluids. Obviously then, all we need to vanquish the Zombie Quakes on Saturday is bucket of bleach, a course of antibiotics as well as the aforementioned cricket bat. In actuality, the page was set up with the serious intent to get people to make disaster preparedness kits, albeit with a let’s-also-prove-science-geeks-have-a-sense-of-humor approach.
More danger is posed to the Quakes fans on Saturday by the threat of influenza, pneumonia or trench foot caused by the damp game-time conditions predicted in tonight’s weather forecast. We all remember The Great Deluge of 2011: the coldest, windiest, wettest game in the four years that I’ve been going to games at Buck Shaw. The game kicked off with the Earthquakes defending the shallow end, and the recently arrived Simon Dawkins showed good handling in the rain typical of his English homeland, and previously best exemplified by Darren Huckerby.
Despite the best efforts of some energetic Frisbee dogs at half time to cheer up the fans, and just after Kyle Beckerman broke the d(r)eadlock with a goal, I broke out the famous quote from Mel Brook’s Young Frankenstein:
Igor: Could be worse.
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: How?
Igor: Could be raining. [It starts to pour]
I wish I could say we all collapsed in laughter, but our spirits had just been dampened even further in the 2011 season opener against Real Salt Lake. At the end of the game, we were cold and soaking wet - but at least we didn’t have to share our car home with a wet Frisbee dog, or a wet Kyle Beckerman.
So will this be Deluge II - the sequel? If so, what will the title be? We can only hope that, true to cinematic precedents, this sequel won’t nearly be as hard-hitting as the original - and will be a damp squib of the ilk of The Sting II, Look Who’s Talking Too, or Dumb and Dumberer. I don’t need (or want) another water-resistant, rust-proof high-tech alloy commemorative Great Deluge pin. I'm not worried though - Quakes fans will be well-prepared - I have my Gore-Tex jacket and pants ready, Ziploc bags for my souvenirs, and waterproof boots (trench foot sucks; CDC has a page for that too). I just wonder if there’s enough room for my cricket bat - just in case.