Baseball season has arrived! I have been a Cubs fan for more than 20 years; I lived 4 blocks east of the bleachers on Waveland Avenue for nearly 15 years and to say that Cubs season was a season of joy for me is to understate the situation. Even when I wasn't at the field (I attended anywhere from 10 -40 games per season depending on the year) I could hear the 7th inning stretch being sung from my balcony. Heaven.
I love being a Cubs fan and I love other Cubs fans. Non-Cubs fans don't really understand the state of being that Cub enthusiasts embrace but I thought I would expound on it a bit because there is something wonderful to be learned from the Cubs fan lifestyle.
Cubs fans can be found the world over but if you are a Cubs fan who lives in Chicago, part of the joy of baseball season can be found in the warm weather. Chicago is bitterly cold for 6-8 months per year and true Cubs fans love shedding their parkas in favor of Cubs gear and heading over to The Friendly Confines for a bratwurst, a beer (or 10), and a taste of the happiness that infuses Wrigley Field.
Here are a few Cubs fan attributes that can be applied to your life (whether you like the Cubs or not) and will help you to become a little closer to understanding what we Cubs fans are all about.
1. Enjoy the moment.
Part of the Cubs game experience is simply to revel in the warm weather (which only lasts 3-4 months), cold drinks, and general happiness that you see on the faces of everyone around you. I have never met a stranger or an unhappy person at a Cubs game.
2. Root for the home team but if they lose who cares? You can still love your team if they don't win.
Loving the Cubs no matter how they perform is essential to being a well adjusted Cubs fan. I liken being a Cubs fan to being the parent of a child with a learning disability - you love that child, you want him/her to do well, but if the child doesn't get straight A's you aren't going to ground them or stop loving them. Cubs fans accept the Cubs for who they are, we hope for the best, but if our beloved Cubbies don't win it doesn't mean we won't come back to the ballpark! We just cross our fingers and hope that next year will be better.
3. Shit happens but don't let that affect your attitude.
The minute Cubs fans start to expect/demand wins from the team things just fall apart. Case in point. I went to game 6 of the Cubs vs. Marlins series during the National League Championship in 2003. I will never forget that game. I went with my friends Shan Bhati, Shane Tritsch, and Andy Weil - we didn't have great seats but we were seated in the section directly above Steve Bartman's seat.
When Steve Bartman supposedly interfered with Moises Alou's catch (which I saw on the monitors) the whole stadium reacted in a very non-Cubs-fan manner. Bartman was booed, called nasty names, and eventually had to be removed from the stadium for his own safety. I remember telling my friend Shan that I was embarrassed for Cubs fans at that minute. That kind of behavior is not what true Cubs fans stand for and ultimately only hurt the feelings of a die hard fan. It wasn't Bartman's fault that the Cubs gave up about 7 runs and lost the game after that mistake.
4. Don't worry, be happy.
Happiness about baseball season and finding joy in every moment of a baseball game is a great way to relieve stress and leave your cares behind. No matter how stressful my workweek, a visit to Wrigley helped me to readjust my priorities and remind myself that stressful situations pass so I shouldn't dwell on them excessively.
5. It's fun to make new friends who share your interests.
Cubs fans have so much fun together and, often, I have found that whomever was seated near me wound up being my "best friend for the day" whether I ever saw them again or not. Cubs festivities never really end when the game is over so I often went to fun parties with new friends or invited them to my post-game parties.
I think some of these "Cubs Fanisms" can be applied to a successful career and/or job search as well. Take my thoughts for what they are worth. Oh, and Go Cubs!
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