Dear Fellow Cubs Fans:
Once you are a Cubs fan, you are a Cubs fan for life. Once you have worn the colors, once you have been to Wrigley, once you’ve smelled the ivy and paid eleven dollars for a lousy hotdog! Once you’ve gritted your teeth, smiled doggedly and held up a sign that says: “WE AIN’T AFRAID OF NO GOATS!”, you are hooked for life. There is no going back.
Then for a real Cubs fan, the first thing that happens is you get used to disappointment. A lot of disappointment. When I wear my Cubs gear, I am tormented in ways you could not imagine! I will be walking down the street (in FLORIDA, mind you, which should rightfully be hundreds and hundreds of miles away from any hatred or any bad blood about a Chicago team) and people I don’t even know will yell insults out car windows at me! Complete strangers, people I’ve never met! Jerks who don’t know me from Adam-or-Eve, who couldn’t pick me out of a line up to save their lives! Suddenly they think they have the right to pull over their cars and yell at me: “THE CUBS SUCK! THE CUBS SUCK!”
Sometimes they throw garbage. Rotten fruit. Oh, how I wish I were making this up.
Still a “WELCOME TO THE FRIENDLY CONFINES!” sign hangs above my bedroom door, still I wear my Cubs hat proudly and always will. Nothing could make me turn my back on my team . . . and *I* don’t even really like sports that much.
Had I grown up on the other side of Chicago, I suppose I could have just as easily have been a White Sox fan, but I didn’t and I am glad for that. On account of the fact that in a way, being a Cubs fan makes you different from being a fan of any other team! There is something wildly magical about loving a team of losers. And I mean L-O-S-E-R-S! La- HOOSERS! Not everyone can stomach it! You have to have faith, you have to have heart! Anybody can love the Yankees, anybody can love the Mets . . . it’s being a Cubs fan that takes courage! Certainly it takes a thick skin.
Now they may say that every team is “entitled to a bad century”, but it isn’t true; `
It’s just us. Only us.
Yet now we’re in the World Series? And we aren’t that far behind?
A win may very well be in the cards for us and believe me, *I* never thought I’d say that, let alone absolutely believe it! Here we are, tonight is the night! It’s Game Six of the World Series and it all hangs on this . . . everything could change tonight. EVERYTHING.
So will we stay? Or will we go?
Now at first blush, I am more than thrilled at the possibility of ending our hundred and eight year drought! It’s so exciting, this could be the most dramatic turnaround in sports history! I get tingles just imagining it! Rest assured I will be watching every second, holding my breath and praying! Nonetheless I must admit that part of me is a little heart sad at the possibility. What if our waiting is over? What if THIS year is the one we have been waiting more than a century for? That long awaited year where we won’t have to say: “Wait until next year . . .”
In a way, it’s like losing a secret, isn’t it? Bittersweet, like a kid catching his mom leaving Tooth Fairy money under his pillow? Or finally finding out that Santa Claus isn’t real?
WHO will our beloved Cubs be if they aren’t our dearly devoted, tragicomic underdogs? The ne’er-do-wells of ne’er-do-wells, our treasured red-and-blue dark horses? Who will WE be if we can’t stick by them? If we can’t “wait for next year” and love them “anyway”?
Of course, as a Cubs Fan, I will be rooting for them! A World Series win would be flipping fantastic, the greatest thing I have ever seen! I would scream from mountaintops and do cartwheels over the moon!
But then as a lifelong, die hard Cubs fan? I would be more than all right with staying second best!
Hugs and kisses, sports fans! GO CUBBIES!!!
~Brianne Sloan: Cubs Fan