Stream of Consciousness Ode to the Cubs (Swoon):
The Cubs are getting oh-so-close to a playoff spot. I almost said playoff berth, but I frankly think berth is a super weird way of putting it for a sports event, even though they did labor to get there. Get it? Labored for their berth? You’re welcome.
The Cubs, aka Favorite Team Everrrr, getting close to the playoffs is like my kids finally figuring out how to change the toilet paper roll in the bathrooms, so yes! I’m excited!
The schedule I hang on the fridge every year is looking pretty good this time around. It’s obviously a super in-depth look at the Cubs… stats shmatz. How did you feel when you watched the Cubs that day? That’s what my reporting tells you. Probably won’t be hired by ESPN anytime soon.
Most of my family members are into baseball and football. (Well, and boxing – which I love to watch…that quirk of mine I blame on my grandpa.) Since my dad was from the Pittsburgh area, of course he loved the Steelers and Pirates. And my mom grew up mainly in the suburbs of Chicago and they were Cubs fans. My grandpa was pastor of a large church in the suburbs and there’s family stories about Phil Regan coming to the church and Phil taking my uncle down to Wrigley. So you could say the Massey side of the family was (is) loyal to the Cubs!
Since I grew up mainly in Wisconsin, we could get WGN radio and listened to a lot of the games. In the summer, my brother would draw a chalk strike zone on the back of our brick house. He’d prop a radio up in the screen window and have the Cubs game on as he threw the ball over and over and over and over and…
I had my first crush on an athlete – Scott Sanderson, a pitcher for the Cubs. His picture – cut from a newspaper – hung on my closet door. Ryne Sandberg’s baseball card also was there for a while. #truluv
When they clinched the division, my mom bought us presents. When you get presents because the team won the division? You like the team. We would go to games occasionally. At one game, Harry Carey was in the stands (I think being led back up to the booth after being on the field) and he backed up right into me. My claim to fame.
One year, my dad and I went with some friends to a Cubs game and we were all super excited because this was going to be the game where they clinched the playoff ber…. spot!!!
It got rained out. My dad and I – sharing a bit of that melancholy side – were like, well… that’s the Cubs for ya! What else would you expect??
They clinched it the next day. Then went on to Completely Mess It All Up.
One of my real life inner personality traits is a high sense of loyalty. It is how I show love. It is how I expect you to show me you love me. It is how I manage to stay with the Cubs through the years of being completely inept, completely mind-boggling stupid.
I look at this as a positive character trait that makes me a nice friend to keep around. You messed up? It’s okay, I still love you! You did it again? I mean, it’s a season of rebuilding for you… right? I won’t leave you!
My brother stopped liking the Cubs about 8 years ago or so. It was a really rough time in our friendship. He deserted the Cubs for another team and I was blindsided by the realization that my brother was a traitor. He still likes to say it’s one of my (many) huge faults – my love for my team.
In order to force, I mean, make my own children into Cubs fans, every year on opening day, we celebrate with a Cubs lunch (hot dogs, peanuts, brownies, Cracker Jack…). And when my daughter was 5, she could do the entire Cubs lineup. “Moises Alouuuuuuuuu!!!” Even now, one of the fun things about the Cubs is watching with my kids. My oldest is actually really into it this year and we’re having fun watching the games and – let’s be honest – we’re having fun buying Kris Bryant shirts for her to wear.
For our anniversary in May, I usually just ask Husband to take me to a Cubs game. We went this year. They lost. Bryant hit a homerun and the old lady next to Husband was so drunk, she was practically in his seat the entire time. Memorrrrieeees.
I love talking about the Cubs and talking trash about other teams. I love finding friends who are into the Cubs as much as I am. I love that I lost a $5,000 bet this year with a friend when he insisted Kris Bryant was dressed as a Ninja Turtle and I insisted Bryant was dressed as SuperMan. We were both basically yelling that we were right…. but in the end, he was right. I lost. But I mean, losing a bet about what character a Cubs player was dressed up as for the Cub pajama party??? As they say: Priceless.
I still keep hoping someone will take me to a playoff game.