I have been turning colours over the past few weeks, afraid to even THINK the wrong things. Now, at last, all is back to normal. Let me explain.
First, though, a few background facts. Fact one: I don’t like baseball. (Sorry, Frank!) It’s a bit slow for me. The fact that baseball often interrupted, delayed, or even cancelled syndicated runs of “Star Trek” on my hometown station WGN-TV (Chicago’s Very Own Channel 9) caused a fair amount of my dislike.
Fact Two: I am a North-Sider. There are no generic Chicagoans. You are either North-Side (and thus a Cubs fan) or South-Side (and thus a White Sox scum … er … fan). Thus, despite my lack of enthusiasm for baseball, I am – by birth and by upbringing – a Cubs fan.
Fact Three: I like goats. A goat was once my best friend.
So what does all this mean? Well, the Cubs actually looked like they were gonna get somewhere this year. And that they might even make it to the World Series, breaking the infamous Billy Goat Curse. So I’ve been in the middle of a dilemma. As proven with England’s fate in the World Cup last year, if I root for a team, they lose. I’m a pariah, and that’s fine. But the Cubs – and more so, the fans – deserved to have their day in the sun (or at the Series). So how could I root for a team if by doing so, I make them lose? How can I hope that goats lose their power over baseball, knowing I like the former and dislike the latter? So here I’ve sat, a dedicated North-Sider and goat fan, wanting to cheer on the Cubs while scared to do so, wanting both the goat and those cursed by the goat to win.
But I shouldn’t have worried. The Cubs have choked in the clinch – a grand tradition in Chicago sports in general, and especially in Cubs history. And now I can love goats (not literally, you perverts!) and dislike baseball again. And still, way down deep in my heart, continue my love-hate relationship with the team Steve Goodman once called “the doormat of the National League”. Who know, maybe next year……