I know that the majority of my readers are American and barely if at all interested in the goings-on of English football, so I've tried to limit my posts on that subject to the occasional piss and moan about the travails of being a Fulham supporter.
And indeed it's been a dismal season, more dismal than even I had realized until today when I heard a BBC commentator note that Fulham had just won back-to-back victories for the first time since September 2006. But note the operative word: "won." Fulham has, after a stomach-churning freefall toward oblivion that has been in effect since before Christmas, have suddenly come to life. All but the most rosy-spectacled fans had already mentally prepared themselves for life in the First Division (which in the bizarre argot of the Football Association is now called the "Championship" but is actually the Second Division), and suddenly Fulham is winning on a regular basis. In fact, if they win just one more - next Sunday's season finale - they're guaranteed to stay in the Premiership (which is actually the First Division).
Unfortunately, that game is against Portsmouth, who are always tough, and away at Fratton Park, making things even tougher. But after Fulham came back from 2-0 down at the City of Manchester Stadium to win 3-2 in the final minute of stoppage time, following it up with today's 2-0 dismantling of Birmingham, almost anything seems possible. Still, it's almost painful to have hope which had all but vanished suddenly resurrected with, however, the knowledge that it could still be cruelly snatched away again. Worse, come next Sunday I'll be in Frisco with, as far as I know, no access to a television to keep track of the proceedings. Which might be for the better: I'm not sure I have the stomach to watch, considering the stakes, and besides, every one of Fulham's recent victories have come on a day when I was unable to watch, whereas nearly every time I have watched, they've lost, often ignominiously so.
So perhaps I'm a jinx, even though all this time, I'd thought Fulham's misfortunes stemmed from their being brokenhearted over my leaving England and no longer being a season ticket-holding regular in the Riverside Stand. Jinx or not, though, my nephew and I will be there come late August to see the mighty (okay, perhaps that's stretching a point) Whites roll out a new season, regardless of what division they're in. But maybe, just maybe, against all odds, it's going to be the Premiership after all.