I had the pleasure of seeing the Cubs on Opening Day yesterday along with Julie and Deb of Aerys Sports and Ana from Accidentally Sexy, and a lot of cool people* willing to get soaked and chilled in order to show us a good time.
But along the way I came into contact with more than a few Cubs fans who, apparently, haven’t left the house in awhile. My judgment could be way off, because I don’t get out of the house that often either. But my recollections of normal human conduct (using the broadest imaginable parameters of that term) make me think we Cubs fans as a group lose our minds a little bit when baseball starts.
I know people say it’s a common trait among all sports fans, but I don’t care about other sports fans. A billion wrongs don’t make a right. If all the other teams’ fans jumped off a bridge, would we do it too? As long as you live under my roof, you’ll do as I say. You probably don’t live under my roof, though, so do as you please. Who am I to tell you how to live?
A hypocritical double-talking curmudgeon, that’s who. Get off my lawn and abide by this list of painfully obvious advice that more than an isolated group of Cubs fans refuse to heed.
10. The train is not a bar. Every destination I headed to yesterday had an atmosphere of loud music and loud talking. That’s not a complaint. All the places were fun and full of people intent on having it. But the train is not one of those places. It’s full of people going to work. They want a little peace before their days really start sucking. I know you’re with your friends. But respect the environment you’re in and try to adapt to it. Because the train is not a bar, which leads to the next fact you already know:
9. Seven in the morning is a little early for drinking. In Public. Every train at every ungodly hour of the morning on any rail leading to Chicago yesterday included Cubs fans already on their second beer. Too early. Right?
7. The old-fashioned mystique of Wrigley is gone. This actually isn’t all that obvious, but it was the product of a conversation I had with one of our hosts, Chelsea the Cardinal Fan. After the game she noted that at Wrigley, you really have to pay attention to the game to know what’s going on, but at Busch, you’re kind of bombarded with the names, stats, and pictures of the batters, replays of the action, and lively music to keep the excitement up. It made me realize that’s a mixed blessing at Wrigley. Sure, it makes the purists happy that our attention has to be on the game itself. But that’s the problem. Cubs fans’ attention doesn’t have to be on the game. It can be on anything they want it to be. It creates the opportunity for Wrigley to play host to a baseball-themed party.
If you’re complaining that Cubs fans should pay more attention to the game, you might ask that the Cubs do a little bit more to remind them they are at a sporting event. Replays, loud music, and ginormous video boards just might help more than you think.
6. Outside your apartment isn’t the best place to berate your significant other, and at the top of your lungs isn’t the best volume at which to do that. Okay, I don’t know if these people were Cubs fans, but they live right next to Wrigley. This is more just a general word of advice to all.
5. If you can’t stand anymore, you probably shouldn’t drink anymore. This is just being practical. Two girls should not have to carry their guy friend away from Wrigley. They’re going to miss their train.
4. Keep your gigantic flabby belly safely covered by the friendly confines of your t-shirt. Please.
3. When looking at the schedule for ideas about what game you should attend, don’t look at the dates where they play the Pirates and say, “Well that looks like a game we can win.” It’s not.
2. Don’t boo Starlin Castro. Not that anyone did. But you should like this guy too much to boo him. This is for future reference when he makes six errors in a game. Still, don’t boo. Just murmur. Murmuring is okay.
1. Hope is a dangerous thing. Tell ‘em, Red.
*My deepest thanks go out to our gracious hosts and new friends: Azeeza, Patrick, Ashley, Javier, Erica, and Chelsea the Cardinal fan. I had a great time, and I can’t thank you enough.