My name is Carrie R–and I believe in the Cubs – the Chicago Cubs that is. I often joke that my fandom to the team is a genetic defect. I was predisposed to being a Cubs fan the moment I was conceived. (Thank you, Dad!) My enthusiasm for the team can be described as addictive and compulsive and so I thought about likening this essay to a twelve-step program. I’ve started with my confession and admitted my weakness. The only caveat is that being a Cubs fan is not something from which I ever hope to recover.
With all the negative talk about curses on the eve of our 100th season without a World Series Championship title, I would like to explain what it means to me to be a Cubs fan. I do not quite understand why management starts off every season saying that we are going to win. I mean, clearly, being a Cubs fan is not about winning. In fact, winning has very little to do with it.
Rather, it’s about idealism and optimism. Each game is a fresh start; a new beginning. There is so much possibility in the air at Wrigley Field it’s contagious. You never know what you are going to witness and the excitement of being at a game to see the hit, the catch, the strike out compels me forward to be a little more alert, a little more alive. Each time I go to a game I feel as though I am witnessing history. Sitting inside Wrigley Field you can feel the power of history come alive. Words fail me when I try to describe the stadium – from the bricks and ivy to the manual scoreboard – the entire experience is truly, to borrow a phrase, priceless.
Believing in the Cubs is also about having compassion and being devoted. Victories come in all shapes and sizes. You’ve got to take what you can get when you can get it. We may be too many games below 500 to count, but those statistics melt away as the afternoon sun makes its way behind the stadium during a weekday day game.
Ultimately, being a Cubs fan is about having faith. Faith in something that is larger than yourself. Faith in something that is larger than life. How else can I explain the flips and turns my stomach makes every time I see the crest of the field as I walk to my seat? And, no – I am not describing an upset stomach from eating one too many hot dogs. Seriously. I take issue with many of our government’s policies and actions both domestically and abroad, but every time I see Wrigley Field I well up with pride. It’s what I imagine patriotism to feel like and it’s awesome.
So, at the risk of jinxing us yet again, but with just as much meaning behind it as when I’ve said it in the past — This is the year!, just as every year is our year.
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