I’ve been a Cubs fan since I was 8 years old. Living in Indianapolis at the time, team choices were the Cincinnati Reds, the Chicago White Sox or the Chicago Cubs. The natural choice was to gravitate towards the Cubs, because that’s who my Dad cheered for. When I was 9, my Dad and I took a little roadtrip to Chicago to see the Cubs play at Wrigley. I can remember vividly, walking up to the entrance of the stadium and seeing the giant, inviting sign that read “welcome to Wrigley Field.” The stadium seemed to tower over me, as though it could swallow me up at any time. There was something extrordinary about being in such a historic place. The contact of the bat and the ball seemed to crack a little louder, the cheers were a little more enthusiastic, the grass was a little greener, and the hot dogs tasted a little better. When the 7th inning stretch came, we all sang along with Harry Caray as he belted out “take me out to the ballgame.” 38,100 individual fans, all singing in perfect unison, a family, rooting for their beloved Cubbies. I learned that day that the correct way to sing the song is to sing “root, root, root for the Cubbies…if they don’t win it’s a shame…” I’ll never forget that day, where it seemed as though the stars of baseball were playing specifically for me, on the prettiest stage of all.
My being of fan of baseball has gone through it’s ups and downs over the years. Moving around a lot made it difficult to continually root for one team, but I always knew that I would cheer for the Cubbies no matter what.
As the playoffs are upon us, I’ve been holding my breath, hoping that the Cubs don’t repeat their predictable history of choking. However, it’s looking like history is on the verge of repeating itself. I can’t help but wonder; are the Cubs the new “Red Sox?” Will my generation be stuck with false hope of seeing the Cubs win the world series before we die? Maybe there’s no curse, maybe it’s just poor playing, but they haven’t won a World Series since 1908. That’s the longest dry spell in ANY of the major professional sports leagues!!
The Cubs are first in the Central right now, but lately, they’ve been losing more than winning. There are only three games left, and the Brewers are within striking distance of taking over first place. The Cubs play Cincinnati in the last three games this weekend. I’ll be holding my breath, crossing my fingers, and praying to the “baseball gods.” Please, just this one time, give us an ounce of hope. And maybe, just maybe, Harry Caray can put in a good word up in baseball heaven. Sending a miracle, so that the beloved Cubs can shine in the spotlight like they do in so many fans’ dreams.