—by Lucas Grzybowski
In June 2005 we made our first Vancouver away trip (we being myself and my one and only Audrey, to whom I will frequently refer in my musings). We'd traveled to support the Timbers before, in Seattle, but this was the first really amazing trip. If you haven't visited Vancouver BC yet, do yourself a favor and go (on October 2, for example). Beautiful city, always a ton of fun (or is it a "tonne" of fun?).
That this memory holds such a high place in my mental hierarchy of Big Timbers Moments might come as a surprise, considering the Timbers lost the game.
Timbers were down 0-2 at halftime, but we were having fun. Swangard may be a glorified rinky dink high school park but it was a great place to see a game. In the second half we got a goal from none other than legendary ankle biter and elbow of doom Tom Poltl. But it was the Timbers' second goal that made this one a classic. Well, the Timbers' second goal and what followed. It's like a chaotic blur that's somehow fixed vividly in my mind.
Edwin Miranda, who was having a great year in the Timbers midfield (and who led the team in minutes played that year), stepped up about a minute into stoppage time to cannon one in in front of the south side-
-the traveling Shed streamed out of the bleachers in section K, mental and elated. It was one of the best goals I'd ever seen, a real magic moment. What a way to end the game-
-and then some Vancouver guy scored immediately after the kickoff, while we were still celebrating, right in front of us, with pretty much the last kick of the game. It was the first time in my life that my jaw physically, cartoonishly dropped in disbelief-
-at some point I remember some of our guys wrestling with the stadium security on the pitch, and with all the south siders who'd migrated to the north end for the second half milling around, it was as I said, a bit of chaos.
An emotional roller coaster? More like an emotional yo-yo. Er, maybe an emotional one of those rides they have at the fair, that shoot people into the air attached to bungee cords, like a giant sling shot. An emotional one of those.
I was sad to see Edwin Miranda leave us the next season for Puerto Rico. In his short time here he was one of my favorite players and could have been a Timbers great. It was certainly strange to see him in a Hollywood Utd kit last season at the PDL western conference final four in Bremerton. Wherever he ends up (currently back at PR it seems), for me he'll always be Extra-Time Eddie.