You Talking to Me? Scenes from postgame Broad Street

From: Sheridan, Phil

To: Ford, Bob; Gonzalez, John

Subject: Happy Days

So I'm leaving the ballpark last night about 12:30 or so and I get into a line of cars turning northbound onto Broad Street. There were people high-fiving and just wandering around looking stunned. I saw this one young guy tapping on windows of cars and I figured, as I pulled up, that he was just communing with everyone. Instead, he was trying to get a ride for himself and his two friends.

Here, the three of them were part of a group of Temple students who sprinted out into the night after Lidge struck out Hinske and just kept going. No coats. No money. They just started down Broad Street and wound up all the way down at the ballpark.

I can't say I felt like driving all the way up to Broad and Montgomery at that moment, but two things made me do it. First, I have kids that age, and I would hope someone would look out for them if they were in a jam. Second, I'm a Temple alum who was about their age when the Sixers won in '83. It just seemed like the right thing to do. The best part of it was simply driving all the way through South Philly and Center City and into North Philly. People everywhere. City Paper boxes were on their sides, papers blowing all over. I saw five guys trying to lift a car, whether to flip it or move it I don't know.

But mostly I'm proud and relieved that there wasn't any serious violence. Nobody was killed. It has been so long here that I really was worried that, when it happened, it would be ruined by some awful behavior - likely by people who aren't even sports fans but who take advantage of the madness to be destructive and violent. There was some mischief - there always is, sadly - but Philadelphia handled itself pretty well.

From: Ford, Bob

To: Sheridan, Phil; Gonzalez, John

Subject: Happy Days

That's a really nice story, and you are a very nice man. I didn't pick up any strangers when I left the park, although there were plenty of them out there. I saw the same things: people hugging each other, guys running down the lines of cars high-fiving all the hands sticking out the windows. I was also glad that it seemed to be, by all reports, just happiness and no random violence or car-burning.

What we already know is that if a car burns in Cleveland, it's no big deal. If a car burns in Philadelphia, it's those monstrous fans gone wild again. I'm glad the national knee-jerks didn't get a chance to dump on Philly again for the same stuff that happens everywhere.

From: Gonzalez, John

To: Ford, Bob; Sheridan, Phil

Subject: Happy Days

Well done, Sheridan. I'm glad you picked those guys up. And it's a good thing that they ran into you and not Ford. I suspect he would have left them there and drove home laughing.

Broad Street was crazy after they won. I met up with a bunch of friends, and we wandered around trying to take it all in. There was some run-of-the-mill hooliganism, but nothing too violent. A few bottles were thrown. Fireworks were set off. Some small newspaper fires were set. But nothing major happened. And by 2 a.m., the street was completely clear. I'm really proud of the way the city handled it.

From: Ford, Bob

To: Sheridan, Phil; Gonzalez, John

Subject: Happy Days

You have friends? That's the big story on Action News.

From: Sheridan, Phil

To: Ford, Bob; Gonzalez, John

Subject: Happy Days

Hey, if Charlie can win a World Series in Philadelphia, he can probably revive the newspaper industry, too.

From: Gonzalez, John

To: Ford, Bob; Sheridan, Phil

Subject: Happy Days

Re: Friends. Amazing, I know. And it's a good thing I have them, too. Without them texting/e-mailing/

calling me, my column would be 50 percent shorter, and I'd have to do a lot more work.

In another year or two, I hope to have the column completely outsourced. At which point I will retire to an island and take up bocce.

From: Ford, Bob

To: Sheridan, Phil; Gonzalez, John

Subject: Happy Days

The sooner the better.