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Not for the Cubs, for me.

Since the rain delay last night only allowed me to see the first four innings of the Cubs' 4-3 loss to the Nationals, please indulge me while I tell you about the state of United Airlines.

The business travel I take allows me to fly first class. Yeah, I know, tough life.

In first class they used to give you a menu with a choice of dinners, put a cloth on your tray, and serve you a hot meal on china.

The first casualty was after 9/11 -- that's when they replaced the real knives with plastic knives, as if this were going to stop a determined terrorist.

But yesterday, I saw how United's desperate financial situation has even affected the last remnants of what differentiates first class from coach.

The choice of meals was "turkey wrap" or "chicken caesar salad", each served in a lovely plastic container. (And with a metal fork and plastic knife.)

Not that I'm complaining or anything -- I mean, it's still free food, although you can buy similar stuff in the airport for about $8. And the first-class seats still are much more comfortable than coach.

But I suspect it won't be too long till United -- and maybe other airlines -- get rid of this last vestige of service in the guise of saving money.

The game's not much to talk about, and, ominously, Z may be injured, leaving the game with "tightness" in his elbow, which is being described as tennis elbow. Cubs trainer Mark O'Neal said:

To use the terms of the doctors here, if you're a pitcher and have elbow pain, this is the site where you want to have elbow pain on.
I'm not sure whether to be encouraged or dismayed by that statement.

I tried to call Jeff during the rain delay but his phone was turned off; either that or he and Mark were hiding somewhere trying to avoid the torrential downpour. Normally you wouldn't start a game 2 hours and 40 minutes after its scheduled time, especially when you've got a day game the next day -- but when a team makes only one visit a year, and when you have a sellout crowd of 42,829 (on TV, it looked like about 2/3 of that number showed up), there's too much money involved for a postponement.

And since I fell asleep in the fourth inning (looking at the time of game, it must have ended a little after 11:30 Chicago time), I can't tell you much about the game, other than it seems from the boxscore that the bullpen at least kept the club in the game -- and it disturbs me that yet again, this club drew zero walks, particularly against a pitcher (Livan Hernandez) who is prone to walking people.

For the rest of the game story, check Chris' excellent in-person summary in the Diaries on the right sidebar.