I remember watching the Cubs on WGN at my grandparents’ house as a kid and on Fox 55 through a snowy screen (“Snowy screen?” Trust me – it sucked). I remember rushing home from school to try and catch Harry Caray and Steve Stone on the TV, two of the coolest dudes I knew. I remember reading about Ron Santo and Billy Williams and Tinker to Evers to Chance. I remember buying baseball reference books just so I could pore over the stats of all the Cubbie greats. I remember my dad telling me about Hank Sauer and how he was one of his favorite players as a kid. I remember when Ernie Banks was my favorite Cub of all-time (still is).
I remember it like it was yesterday, listening to the radio in my parents’ car as the Cubbies lost game 5 of the 1984 NLCS after being up 2-0. I remember the Bartman foul ball and Alou jumping around and screaming and pointing. I remember Greg Maddux getting traded after winning the Cy Young. I remember my heroes growing up – Penguin, Bull, Ryno, Hawk – none of who played in a world series as a Cub.
I also remember Saturday night, standing in my living room three feet away from a big screen TV as the inevitability of a double play was about to confirm what we previously thought was impossible – the Chicago Cubs were going to the World Series! I remember getting choked up as the realization that “next year” was finally “this year.” I remember singing along to myself as the Cubs faithful in attendance sang “Go Cubs Go!” and swelling with pride when Harper started singing along with them.
It’s been a life full of “I remembers” when it comes to the Cubs but I’d like one more memory – “I remember when the Cubs won the World Series.” I might shed a tear for that one but it won’t be for me – it’ll be for all those individuals who made my “I remembers” something I’ll never forget. Thank you for making me appreciate this year and thank you for making me a lifelong Cubs fan.