Welcome to Chicago, I trust that you are finding the colorful characters of our city to be more than hospitable. It's a town rich with tradition, rooted in hard-working values that sprout from each successive generation. Take in the sights, eat well, and be merry. But when you've finished that, I want you to take a long look at what's happening.
At this moment, just a stone's throw up the asphalt plank to Missouri, thousands of St. Louis Cardinal fans are celebrating their second World Series Championship in ten years. The Cardinals. Our New York Yankees. Our hated rivals. For a century, we've watched in horror as they've racked up titles in nearly every decade. Even in the steroid era, they stiole the spotlight from us. McGwire vs Sosa? Please, no contest. Their syringe-filled slugger now resides on their bench, a champion once more. Ours isn't even allowed in the building. It would seem St Louis has even beaten us at the game of forgiveness.
This is what you're entering into Theo, a clogged mountain of chaos, awashed with grief at never being good enough. You were a God in Boston, rightfully so. But as much as there are similarities, this aint' Boston my man. Did you ever grow up with a cousin, one that everyone in the family thinks has striking resemblances to you? That was Boston and Chicago, two sports cities filled with immeasurable 'this close' moments. Only problem was, Boston grew up. Now they're the better-looking, better-dressed cousin that everyone admires. We're just the one Grandpa takes pity on.
Anyone with a brain knew Boston was going to get it together at some point. They were just too good, and the Yankees could only thwart them for so long.
Cardinal fans don't even take us seriously. And they shouldn't. We're pathetic, cursed, or just plain poorly run. Hell, the one thing we had going for us was that we were cute and cuddly. That's now in danger too, as for som God-forsaken reason Cardinal fans have adopted the squirrel as an unofficial mascot.
Theo, you aren't the first to bring high hopes. There was Dallas. Andy. Dusty. And Lou.
They all got the hell out of town as fast as humanly possible, because you just don't understand the insanity until you're in the thick of it. I never said we were reasonable Theo. We're not.
To describe a Cub fan's pain is impossible. We hurt so badly, as it's not just our pain we feel. We feel our Father's pain. Our Grandfather's pain. The weight of a million men, women, and children now rests on your shoulders. Theo, make no mistake... no World Series appearances in over 60 years, coupled with no championships in over 100 is utterly and absolutely fucking pathetic by any statistical measurement.
The Marlins have two. The freaking Florida Marlins?!
Worst of all, our most hated of all rivals, The Chicago White-Sox, have one. For years, White Sox and Cub fans have enjoyed a nasty debate about each other's franchises and our collective futility. Do you know what trumps that debate Theo? THEY WON A WORLD SERIES.
Theo, I'm not telling you anything you don't know. All I'm telling you is that perhaps you need to clean house. Players. Personnel. Coaches. Even secretaries.
Do something. Take Carlos Zambrano's anger and ship it to Philadelphia. Aramis Ramirez wants a committment to winning? See how he likes it in Washington instead. Soriano? Eat his contract, just find us a left-fielder that can catch a routine fly ball. I think my five year old nephew might be available, at least he can hit the cut-off man.
You can keep Castro, Marmol, and the only Cub in the last fifteen years to deserve permanent enshrinement into our hearts, Kerry Wood.
While we're at it, hire Sandberg as your manager. Give him Andre Dawson, Jody Davis, and Greg Maddux as his bench coaches. Put Sutcliffe in the color commentary booth, and bring back Budweiser Bleacher Days.
Wait- what am I saying? See, this is the problem.
Don't listen to me. In fact, that's the answer Theo. Don't listen to me. Or them. Or any fans.
Go watch Moneyball and get inspired. Walk around, soak the atmosphere in, and implement a plan.
Bottom line- do what YOU think is best. Do anything, just please end our suffering, even if you need to tear down Wrigley to get us there.
Just for once, we'd like to walk around as champions.
Please Theo. Save us. Save us from another lifetime of embarrassment and shame. Save us Theo. Don't let us die complete losers.
Is that so much to ask?
Welcome to Chicago.
Cubs fans worldwide. Kurt Edward Larson just published his first book, Finding the Super-Hero Within. In it, he openly lambasts his Father for not raising him a Yankee fan, instead passing along the gift of constant misery at the hands of the Chicago Cubs.
You can buy the book, in either print or electronic form, by CLICKING HERE.