Chicago Cubs: What’s it like to be a Cubs fan where you live?
By Robert Davis
A tour of the Motherland
by: Ryan Tadych, Jacob Misener, Tim Stebbins and David Miniel
Living on the northwest side of the city is fun. It’s close to Wrigley so anyone can go to games with ease. Obviously, there are tons of Cubs fans and people donning Cubs gear. But, with that being said, there aren’t as many die-hard fans as one may think. Just because your a Cubs fan doesn’t make you a die-hard fan.
I’ve talked to people around town and overhear conversations at games where even the newest bandwagoner can tell that those people didn’t know about the Cubs or the sport. Sure, you don’t have to know every last detail to be a fan but watch or go to the game because you actually want to watch the game. I’m just asking for a little honesty, that’s all.
The good thing though is the Sox fans are few and far between especially on the north side. Most have kept quite since the World Series now. It’s fun being surrounded by so many Cubs fan, especially now when we have bragging rights. But again, there’s a lot of “fair weather fans” or fans that associate with one side or the other but don’t know much. Being a fan is rooting for the team no matter what.
I have an example from yesterday where I tweeted about the Sox only have 18,000 paid attendance at last night game (a Friday night division rival game against the AL Champs). A Sox friend tweeted, “it’s 50 degrees and they are not that good”. If your a real fan, you’d go regardless of weather or success!
Support your team! As Jake Arrieta said, wearing a jersey or hat doesn’t mean much.
If it’s easy on the north side of town, then it’s easier than ever here in the southwestern suburbs of Chicago.
You can’t go to the grocery store or eat at a restaurant without seeing Cubs hats, shirts – even flags flying on cars driving down the highway. That being said, there are more fair-weather fans than ever, as well. As I’ve learned in the past six months, a shirt does not equate to substantive baseball knowledge. Or even any baseball knowledge.
Still, we’re reigning World Series champions. What’s not to like?
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Frankly, being a Cubs fan in Chicago is spectacular and terrible all at once. One the one hand, the Cubs are defending champs and the entire city is buzzing over their success. On the other hand, many people have latched onto this success and act like they’ve been fans of the team through thick and thin.
It’s okay to become a fan of a team after they start winning. After all, the Cubs weren’t the most fun to watch during the 2009-2014 seasons. However, it is not okay to claim to be a die-hard fan when you just started watching the Cubs. Sadly, there are far too many fans that act like this now. I guess that’s the price to pay for winning a championship, however.
Even in Sterling/ Rock Falls, Illinois, two small towns divided by a only bridge and high school football teams, the Chicago Cubs are still the number one priority.
Yes, you have your typical out-of-state fans who pull for the Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, Miami Marlins, Kansas City Royals, etc. in the mix. While Green Bay Packers fans are up there with those (myself included) who pull for the Chicago Bears, Cubs fans dominate both towns. Of course, White Sox and Cardinals faithful are around and have made our lives miserable with the whole curse nonsense and still do from time-to-time.
There isn’t much to it, honestly. Growing up as a kid, I remember watching Cubs games with my Grandpa Miniel in Rock Falls. The amount of love he had for the sport itself was inspiring and eventually led to me falling in love with it as well. From watching games to actually coaching little league teams from the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, baseball was life. Our little area has a lot of people who relocated from Chicago and a few people I know said it felt like home minus the traffic, giant buildings, Lake Michigan and the venues.
It was because of all the Cubs fans in the area. Truly amazing. – D.M.