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Monday, March 31, 2008

Playing Ball @ The Prog


It is indeed a new day. It is March 31, 2008, better known around the country as "Opening Day." This is the day when "The Boys of Summer" will don their uniforms, trot onto the field, and as the gladiators of old, do battle with the opposition.

It is also the first time in twenty-five years that I have not worn a Chicago Cubs jersey (or at least t-shirt) on opening day. "Why" you ask? Simple. Nobody in Cleveland gives a rip about the Cubs. To Indian fans the Cubs might as well be some team that plays in Tokyo. They just don't register on any richter scale. Now in St. Louis it was an entirely different story! By flying my Cubs colors I could keep a conversation going all day long. You see ... it's all about causing havoc! It's about mentally tormenting the opposition. No matter that the Cubs consistently fell flat on their faces throughout those years. On opening day ... no body was really sure what was going to happen.

And now I find myself on the outskirts of Cleveland, home of the dreaded (sic) Indians. Over the winter they snatched away the name of their beloved ballpark, "The Jake" (short for Jacob's Field) and replaced it with "Progressive Park" (long for "The Prog.") There is still a lot of moaning going on locally about that. I feel their pain. Wrigley Field is threatening to rename the wonderfully friendly confines something like, "Malox Memorial Stadium," "Pepto Bismol Park," or "Depends Field."

Oh, the pain.

So anyway, here I sits at my desk in the office today all decked out in my "White Sox" jersey. Why? Because the White Sox are the worthy opponents of the Indians on this opening day. They are also the mortal enemy of the home team. I understand that people here in my adopted hometown will not smile upon my decision to wear the black and silver. Rumor has it that I am risking life and limb. Geez, people. It's baseball. Get over it.

You know, I still bleed Cubbie Blue. But I'm forced to scream loud and long for the White Sox this year. It's the only way I can possibly cause trouble around here. I can't picture a season without tormenting the locals. I've been ruined by being away from Chicago for 25 years. My job is to be a missionary for Chicago baseball, reaching out to the heathen masses in the cities worshipping at the altar of pagan teams.

But here is a question that I need answered. My two teams are from Chicago. (I know, you aren't suppose to be able to do that. But I'm doing it. So deal with it.) When I moved away from Chicago, God placed me in the hometown of the baseball team that I despise the most ... the Evil Cardinals. I put up with that for 24 years. And now God moves me again. And He plops me down in the hometown of the nemesis of my second favorite team ... The Indians. Is God trying to tell me something? And if so ... what? I need a bit of help on this one. ONLY Cubs and White Sox fans are invited to reply. The rest of you just sit quietly and behave yourselves.

Scott is flying in on Wednesday. He, Debbie and I will be going to "The Prog" for Thursday's game. It might snow. It might rain. It WILL be cold. The wind WILL blow. The Prog is just a couple of blocks from Lake Erie where the wind always ALWAYS always blows.

Opening day. Man, I miss Harry Caray.

4 comments:

heresthediehl said...

OK, technically, I'm disobeying the command about replying, as I am a lifelong Cardinals fan (and all three of my boys are decked out in their Cards gear today!). But, I just had to tell you that my husband was a lifelong Cubs fan, raised by a lifelong Cubs fan, and when he moved to St. Louis, he couldn't help but become...a Cardinals fan! (it took a couple of years, but it happened!) I know his family thinks he's betrayed them, but he just recognized that it's fun to root for a team that sometimes wins in the post-season.

So maybe you being placed in Cleveland means that it's time for a new favorite team...heehee.

Just kidding. Enjoy opening day!

Ron said...

As a pastor ... a man of the cloth ... I am required to tell you that what your husband did IS EVIL!!!!! And, since he is a Christian, while he will not suffer the flames of punishment I do believe he will be assigned to clean my bathroom for eternity. Please give him this message for me ...

"REPENT! IT IS NOT TOO LATE! IT'S OPENING DAY! GET OUT THE BLUE PINSTRIPES! I BEG OF YOU ... FOR YOUR OWN SAFETY (AND BECAUSE I HAVE NOTORIOUSLY HORRIBLE AIM) ... COME HOME TO WRIGLEYVILLE!!!!

heresthediehl said...

Hilarious! I'll be sure he gets the message. Right after the Cardinals play this afternoon.

Earth Muffin said...

Being a man of the cloth, can't you perform an exorcism on your previous poster's husband? I mean, honestly, who REALLY converts to being a Cards fan after being raised a Cubs fan? Isn't that something like being "a little bit pregnant"?

And you don't have to call them the Evil Cardinals any more. Didn't you hear? The media came up with a FANTASTIC new name for them...the Roid-birds! I love it! GO CUBS!!!

Mary Beth Beam says hello to both of you, by the way.