Thursday, November 3, 2016

The fulfillment of a dream

"It happened in my lifetime."  --My dad
Last night (actually, very early this morning) the Chicago Cubs won the World Series for the first time in 108 years.

Yep, that's what this is about.

Chris and I aren't big sports fans. We don't really follow teams, keep stats, even know who the players are.

But I will always root for the Cubs. Even though it's just a passing 'hey, they won yesterday'. Because being a Cubs fan runs in the family. It's in my blood.

My great-grandfather was at the famous World Series game in 1932 when Babe Ruth called his shot.

My grandpa was a die-hard Cubs fan his entire life. He was born 2 years after the Cubs won their previous World Series in 1908. He died having never seen them win a World Series.

My dad was born after the Cubs made their last World Series appearance in 1945.

There was a time back in the 90s when we spent a weekend every January at the Cubs convention. We got to meet some of the new players (Kerry Wood and Pat Cline before their major league debuts). We listened to panels with favorite players past and present (1984 Cubs were always our favorites). We walked down the hall next to Mr. Cub himself, Ernie Banks.

Photo of my dad holding my then one year old son who is wearing Grandpa's Cubs hat
Passing the tradition to the next generation
A few weeks ago my dad wore his Cubs gear and flew his W flag to celebrate the Cubs winning the National League title. He hasn't worn his Cubs shirt or hat, or watched a game, all season.

Sports fans, especially Cubs fans, will recognize his superstition, since the Cubs have played great all season... when he hasn't watched the games. He would have loved to watch his beloved Cubs play, especially this season. But it was more important for him that they win.

Today I talked to my dad on the phone. He turned on the game last night just for a few minutes in the 9th inning.... and things went badly. So he turned the tv off again, grateful for the text updates from my niece and nephew, who stayed up to watch the game and kept their grandpa informed. (They're good kids.)

He didn't get to see the Cubs win. He gets to find highlights of the game online today (yay for living in the future where he can see the final out, even though he didn't watch the game!) and fly his W flag with pride. And pick up a world championship t-shirt.

And next year, well, next year he says he might watch a game or two since they've won a World Series once in his lifetime. They've broken the curse and if his watching means they lose an occasional game, well, there's always next year.