Go, Cubs, go
Wrigley Field in Chicago just had the party of the century.
With Old Style as its official beer, it’s certainly the place for it.
On Tuesday night, in front of a festive hometown crowd, the Chicago Cubs beat the St. Louis Cardinals to win the National League Division Series. The win was the first-ever for a postseason series at home. The brick, ivy-covered stadium was alive with vibrance and energy. Rightly so. Cubs baseball fans were smiling, laughing and snapping photos with their cell phones of history in the making. Watching just one state over in Indiana, I couldn’t think of a better place a Cubs fan could be than Wrigley.
Unless that fan happens to be a new mom.
My three-month-old Will — who’s in the market for tiny-sized Cubbie gear — and I were perfectly comfortable celebrating the historical moment from the recliner. Seemingly milk drunk, Will didn’t know why his mom was so excited. But for all the Cub fans like myself, the series victory was a long time coming. Good things do come to those who wait, as the saying goes.
Even if it takes 107 years.
The Cubs haven’t won a World Series since 1908, when Henry Ford produced the first Model T and Jimmy Stewart was born. The Cubs organization is America’s oldest active professional sports club, and the longest continuously in existence in the same city for its entire history.
Being a Cubs fan is serious business.
Those facts are a reminder of all those Chicago fans out there who have waited entire lifetimes for their beloved Cubbies to win the pennant. Also, millions in the afterlife. The late and beloved Cubs announcer Harry Caray specifically comes to mind.
Holy cow, right Harry?
I know I’ve pictured heaven to be much like Wrigley was on Tuesday night. Or like that epic concert on Sept. 5, 2005, when Jimmy Buffett played Wrigley Field, becoming the first musician ever to play a concert there. That Labor Day weekend, my best friend Megan and I made the trek from Indy to Wrigleyville. We came. We saw 40,000 Parrotheads. In all their glory. We drank Old Style tall boys.
And we waited in the longest women’s bathroom lines in the history of Wrigley.
Maybe Jimmy will make a comeback to Chicago for the next home game and sing the National Anthem. Or at least “Take me Out to the Ballgame.” Music is as much a part of the Cubs baseball experience as Old Style and rally caps. After the 6-4 win, fans united in the more-recent tradition of singing the official victory song, “Go, Cubs, Go!” written by Steve Goodman.
“Hey, Chicago, what do you say, the Cubs are gonna win today” does have a nice ring to it.
Thanks to the Internet, there’s a video that has surfaced with audio that proves fans could be heard singing the “Go, Cubs, Go!” lyrics more than a mile away from Wrigley. Listening to it makes me tear up as I think about all those dedicated fans who have prayed the Cubs could win a World Series again. I’ve read we have a 60 percent chance of doing so.
I like those chances.
Year after year, die-hard Cubs fans have never given up hope. I’m personally looking to signs from the universe that 2015 is the year the Cubs win the pennant again. In “Back to the Future Part II” the Chicago Cubs win the World Series. So we have that going for us.
And it’s been exactly 70 years since the infamous Curse of the Billy Goat was made.
The story behind the goat curse is that in 1945, Billy Goat Tavern owner Billy Sianis brought his pet goat to Wrigley for a World Series game against the Detroit Tigers. Supposedly, he was asked to leave because the smell was bothering other fans.
I wonder if they said, “Billy, get your goat outta here.”
Foregoing proper grammar etiquette, he cursed Wrigley and the team, saying, “Them Cubs, they ain’t gonna win no more.” The rest is Cubbie folklore history.
Cub fans don’t need to be reminded the team hasn’t won a World Series since.
In my imaginative and superstitious mind, sports curses — especially involving goats —are lifted at exactly 70 years. Why 70? In Olympic archery, the targets are 70 meters from the archers. Also, 70 years is the expiration of copyrights, and at one time I wanted to be a copyright attorney. Plus, in years of marriage, 70 years is the platinum wedding anniversary. And it seems nearly impossible to be with one person for 70 years. Also, there’s a goat in Colorado named Clarkie, after me. Albeit nonsensical, they’re all reasons Chicago is really about to have the party of the century.
I’ll bring the Old Style.
April E. Clark is rooting for Kyle Schwarber, the Cubs left fielder with a Hoosier connection as a former Indiana University catcher. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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