As all of you should know—primarily because The St. Louis Cardinals are the most American team in the most American, and 4th most popular, sport that our country has ever seen—this week a great tragedy befell our most blessed nation. The St. Louis Cardinals lost to the Chicago Cubs. Not in Spring Training. Not during any early season bender when the Ringling Brothers Circus has rolled into the Gateway City and any reasonable person would forget about baseball in order to be out getting wasted with the bearded woman.
This is a development is, even more surprising given that the Cubs are also, as I am sure you’re all aware, a franchise that hasn’t won a World Series since 1908; since a man with a mustache could actually be elected president of these United States; since woman were banned from voting because it was believed by some that their periods would attract bears to the polls. That is my favorite thing about the Chicago Cubs: that they are losers.
That is also my least favorite thing about this particular division series: what it signifies. That now perhaps, maybe, the Cubs have changed who they are. The sad fact is that the Cubs are good. The sadder fact is that that the Cubs are damn good. And, for the first time in a long time, I believe that the Cubs have a shot to (as Back to the Future II predicted) have 2015 be the year that they win it all. Just know turkeys, that I will not be rooting for you. Just know Cubs fans that when push comes to shove these are the things I will be rooting for instead.
25 Things I’d Root For Before Rooting For The Cubs To Win The World Series
1) JK Rowling writing an 8th Harry Potter book where Voldemort comes back to life and seduces Hermoine once she realizes how much better looking a man with no nose is than Ron Weasley.
2) Naming my first born child “Urethra.”
3) Ever “working” or “being” outside in 74+ degree heat.
4) Taco Bell going out of business.
5) A jack-o-lantern carved to look like John (or Joan) Cusack.
6) Spending the rest of my life trapped inside a pinball machine like that damn kid in that damn episode of Are You Afraid of the Dark.
7) The downfall of indoor plumbing.
8) Knowingly eating a Subway sandwich with a dead mouse in the spinach.
9) Pizza sales being banned by the Missouri State legislature in a 100% blatantly racist attempt to prohibit “ethnic food.”
10) Only requesting Uber drivers that own smart cars.
11) “Letting” Ronda Rousey whip my ass in a crowded bar to prove gender equality.
12) (Non-lethal) Legionnaire’s disease.
13) Getting stuck sitting between Norm from Cheers and Jason Whitlock on a Southwest Flight to Omaha.
14) Eating at a tapas restaurant.
15) Deepak Chopra (yeah…we got beef).
16) Electing the character Shredder from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle films to the United States Senate.
17) Butt chugging becoming an Olympic Sport.
18) Ben Carson getting a gun pulled on him at a Popeye’s Restaurant where I worked as a cashier.
19) Any piece of clothing made from denim.
20) The guy in my winter bowling league that was brought up never to drink alcohol picking up a spare.
21) Off duty UPS drivers smoking just a little bit of crystal meth.
22) People believing that a person wearing sweatpants to work is an unquestioned indication that said person will one day become a terrible father.
23) E-Trade continuing to violate child labor laws by putting a baby in its commercials.
24) The entire world turning into one gigantic desert.
25) A lot of things. That’s the entire point. I would root for a lot of things before I would root for the Cubs. This may seem severe or overly harsh or unnecessarily spiteful to many of you, given the Cubs history of never winning and the Cardinals history of almost always being victorious. And I see what you are saying. The Cubbies haven’t won a World Series Title in 107 years. Wouldn’t any decent person, once his or her own squad has been eliminated, root for the streak to be broken? Wouldn't any noble citizen, once his or her own team no longer had a shot, root for that kind of suffering to end?
No. For all of the good qualities that sports and fandom espouse on our society—community building, and shared passion, and immersing ourselves in the joy we can only feel when we truly care about something, about anything, and when we let it wash over us in spite of all the logic and reason that tells us that it should not matter—there is another side to the coin. Sports create irrational love. They also establish unexplainable hate. Hate that seeps inside of you, sinks deep down in your pours. Hate that allows you to truly despise someone that you have never met for the simple reason that they are wearing the wrong logo across their chest. Hate that means nothing will ever be right in the world again until you get your revenge.
Hate that has manifested itself in my life, for better or worse, and will always remain. I was born in St. Louis. That dictates that I will always cheer for the Cubs’ fans agony. That means that I will always root for the Cubs to flounder. That portends that the Chicago Cubs can only bring me satisfaction when they fail. To non-fans that makes no sense. To true fans it makes all the sense in the world. To us all, as the venerated poet Tupac once said, that’s just the way it is. Maybe things will never be the same. Maybe they will. I do not know.
I, like all of you, am waiting to find out. I, like all of you, am waiting for the Chicago Cubs to use this October run to tell me.