We here at Cubbies Crib just wanted to take a minute and wish all Chicago Cubs fans a Happy Thanksgiving. While you spend the day with family and friends, remember to give thanks for all those things bestowed upon you this year. And for us fans, the Cubs have given us plenty this year. A cornucopia of sorts.
On this Thanksgiving Day, most people–especially Chicago Cubs fans–will spend time with their loved ones and give thanks. Now, some might say that “it’s just a game”, and that sports aren’t what you should be giving thanks for. On the surface, that may be true. But this Cubs World Series win ran much deeper than just a game. It gave many a sense of accomplishment as fans. There was finally joy over misery. There were hugs and tears instead of “wait ’till next year”. For all those things, I give thanks.
I grew up a Cubs fans. I can remember being four years old, riding with my dad on our Snapper lawnmower and listening to the Cubs on WGN radio. I also remember being five and watching Steve Garvey hit the walk-off home run off of Lee Smith to send it to Game 5. These are the memories I have even before I became an adult. They weren’t all bad. But they tested your commitment as a fan–even as a five-year-old kid.
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In all honesty, I was able to see some of the successful years of the Cubs in my lifetime. 1984, 1989, 1998 ,2003, 2007 and 2008. Clearly, some lean years followed that. But a process that began with 90 and 100 loss teams culminated with a World Series in 2016. And once again, for that I am thankful.
My father’s agony, alleviated
My father’s path as a Cubs fan is a different story. As my father nears 80, he was becoming content with not seeing the Cubs win a World Series. He was actually alive when they played in 1945, but said he didn’t recall it that well. But our family hails from Chicago, so I think he just didn’t let on as much that he remembered. Suppressed memories maybe.
He still feels as if the 1969 Cubs were one of the best teams the Cubs had. You can’t dispute that. At least I won’t. But that season sort of crushed his hopes. But when this Cubs team made it, he said that was all he needed. That if he passed now, he would be happy. Well, the Cubs went a step further and game my old man a chance to see them as champs. For that, I am thankful.
There are many other things to be thankful for, but to me, the Ricketts’ family and their purchase of the Cubs was one of the biggest things to me that turned them around. No longer owned by the Tribune Company and run like a business, they were owned by a Cubs fan. Someone who didn’t just want to see people in the seats, but a successful team on the field. It took five years–and the hiring of key players like Joe Maddon and Theo Epstein–but it’s clearly worked out for the best. Tom Ricketts and family, special thanks to you from myself and ALL Cubs fans across the world.