As a lifelong Chicagoan, at least as it pertains to most of my sports allegiances, this past week was not a particularly memorable one. It was painful enough to watch the Green Bay Packers hoist another Super Bowl trophy last February after knocking the Bears, but NOW my sports pain threshold has been raised to a whole new level: I’m down here in the very heart of Cardinals Nation, as another World Series title has been brought to St. Louis.
I imagine there is some jealousy in both situations, but from a Cubs fan’s perspective, probably even more so envy. The Cardinals, like the Packers, seem to be in the mix year after year, while the Cubs on the other hand….you know all too well how that story goes. Even my father, a lifelong, suffering Cubs fan, said that he couldn’t help but be impressed, and a little envious, as he noticed all the World Series titles and appearances that adorn Busch Stadium as his train pulled into town on his last visit.
Back home my angst is generated from all the White Sox fans I encounter every day. Whether friend or foe, it doesn’t mater; they all possess the capacity to annoy the crap out of me.
Back in 2005, when the Sox won the World Series, I was convinced the Sports Illustrated book that came out to celebrate their championship would either be a pop-up book or a scratch-n-sniff. All I know is, listening to sports radio back home, White Sox fans tend to discuss, in ascending order, Sox success, Sox failure and the Cubs. I didn’t think it got much worse. But you Cards fans here are equally unoriginal. It’s been 103 years!? Really? Huh, I didn’t know that….
Then my dad and I attended our first Maryville Family Night on Oct. 14. Your emcee was stopping the trivia questions, sometimes two times per question, to give a Cardinal-Brewer update! Since you’ve been here before, feel free to act like it once in a while. I admit, if the Cubs ever win a World Series in my lifetime – please, Theo – I imagine that’s how the majority of Cubs nation will behave. But we won’t know any better! You have world class hospitals and an Art museum. There’s no need to be Odessa, Texas, the town of 8,000 or so people from ‘Friday Night Lights’. And please, please, for both our sakes, try and grasp the Pujols situation. And don’t, DON’T, compare him to Lebron.
If Albert leaves, he’s not bailing in his prime because he doesn’t feel he can get it done where he’s at. Pujols has had one of the best baseball decades in history with the Cardinals, including two Championships, and now the man wants to be paid. So you can be crushed, you can me mad, but until he puts on a one-hour special and utters the phrase “I’m taking my talents to the Bronx!”, keep your Lebron comparisons to yourself.
All in all, I guess I will have to sit back and take it, as they say. To the victor go the spoils! At least now that baseball season is over, so is St. Louis sports-dominance. Thank God for the Hawks, the only well-oiled machine of a franchise we have at the moment. And the recent news of Tony La Russa going away should help a little too.