Friday was a day like many others. Still a bit of sun, but winter chill was just around the corner. Dave and I went for a walk. A musical fart might have happened. It might have been mine. Dave gave it a thumbs-up and an Eight, because he is a supportive guy. And it hit me: This might be my last innocuous flatulatory emission for days. The World Series was mere hours away. It’s peanut time!

I watch the occasional tennis match and one or two basketball games, but the bulk of my yearly sports consumption happens in fall. It peters in toward the end of the pennant races and climaxes in the World Series, otherwise known as the Annual GI Tract Challenge. I have already purchased my salted peanuts in the shell. I am locked and loaded.

I deny that I have a problem with portion control. One bag equals one portion. I used to get the three-pound bags but my GI tract was younger then. That should have killed me even then but I didn’t know better. My digestive system was like a young woman who still thought she needed to be polite to handsy old lechers; it just took whatever got dished out and made the best of it. I have learned. Now I modify my intake by buying the peanuts in one-pound bags.

Still, it’s a lot to ask of the old intestines, sending that fat-protein-and-fiber bomb sluicing down the old goober tube. But I really like salted peanuts in the shell and eat them only during the World Series, and I figure that as long as the incoming peanut barrage does not strand a gravel bar at that last sharp bend before the rectum, I should be okay.

But just because I’ve survived this internal assault every year so far doesn’t mean I can continue without consequence. Things happen. For instance, mere weeks before my latest birthday, which was one of those consequential ones, I suddenly presented with osteoarthritis in my right index finger. Which is a pretty specific age-related event which I in no way asked for. I try not to complain about it too much because, frankly, a lot of people my age are dead. But guess the hell what? It’s my main peanut-shell crunching finger.

I still have to decide who to root for. It’s not straightforward. The Red Sox are out; so are the Yankees, who I would naturally root against. We’ve gotten it down to a Texas team and an Arizona team. The Arizona Diamondbacks only started playing in 1998 and won a World Series when the franchise was still in diapers. And, they beat the Yankees to do it. The Texas Rangers haven’t ever won a World Series. And they used to be the Washington Senators, which was my team when I was little. So I could make a case for either team. Draw.

Texas has two Republican senators including Ted Cruz whom nobody likes, and Arizona has one Democratic senator and one technicolor whackadoodle spanglebunny who loves attention more than her country. Still, advantage Arizona.

Diamondbacks are reptiles. Rangers are police. Advantage Arizona.

Neither team contains José Altuve, who is old, short, and fabulous. Draw.

The Arizona outfield is herpetologically mown into a snakeskin pattern. The Texas outfield is features a Bonnie and Clyde design with little X’s over their eyes, and a dead-Mexican motif in the warning track. Draw.

So, slight edge Arizona. I have three one-pound bags, and I’m thinking about giving them a soothing ice-cream escort. I’m ready. Go Butter Pecan! I mean Diamondbacks!

Oh hell, I don’t care. After my third bout of peanuts, I’m just rooting for a sweep.