Need I say more?
Need I say more?
Hey there, ring tones. I had to go to San Francisco the other day, which was pretty much a series of kidney stone moments for me, only with extra large, economy-size beach balls instead of those little tiny rock doo-dads. It was a lot like being in Road Warrior, if you know what I mean. I’ll spare you the play-by-play, except for the biggest get-me-the-hell-outta-here moment, which was me trying to talk to a live human at AT&T. Not the ball park, the phone company.
I bring this up for one reason: to help put the frustrations of being a Cubs fan into perspective. It looks a whole lot different for the Cubs this year, I grant you that. But let’s just say something weird happens, like the even numbered year thing the Giants got going, or Obama does one of his executive orders mandating the White Sox as World Series champs. (Technically, I guess that wouldn’t be considered weird for the guy.) So the curse continues, right? Well I’ll tell you one thing, pal, that damn curse is nothing compared to working your way through that friggin’ pain-in-the-ass AT&T computer voice thingy.
Dirty Harry Callahan was from San Francisco, not Chicago, which means that he was probably rooting for the wrong team. I cut him a wide birth on that one, though, cuz in those days the Giants had Juan Marichal, Gaylord Perry, Bobby Bonds and both Willies (Mays and McCovey). Sheesh … I mean how could you not root for that lineup? Anyway, Callahan may have been from that fogged-in, hippie-infested (it was the 70s, pal), crime-ridden city, but knew EXACTLY how to eat a hot dog: No friggin’ catchup!
I bring this up because some of you — and you know who you are — obviously were not paying attention to the Cheap Seats dining rules I posted a couple of days ago. Hey … you can do what you want, pal, but if Charlie Trotter was still around and saw you smothering an encased meat product with catchup, he send you to the moon, Alice.
Let me start by saying that I love ESPN. I’ve been an addict since way back, back, back, back, back when Chris Berman could still see his toes. Since before ESPN 2 and ESPN 3 and Deportes. Since before Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser started yelling at each other, and before Keith Olbermann became such a ginormous a-hole. My first words were “DaDaDa. DaDaDa.”
I was pickin’ up an ice cold sixer of Old Style today, and while scanning the mags at the check out line (Hey, did you know the bitter marriage between Barack Obama and his wife Michelle continues to fall apart in the wake of the president’s womanizing?) when ESPN The Magazine’s cover grabbed my disbelieving eyeballs like a Fabricio Werdum guillotine.
Unless you’re from another planet (Mets fans, I’m talking to you), you understand that the Cubs have a pretty friggin’ good chance of making the Series this season. We’ve lost Schwarber to a freak accident which ain’t good, but still, outta the billions and billions of stars out there I’m thinking there’s only one or two that are out of alignment. I’d almost be willing to say it’s our destiny to win the last game of the playoffs this year. Almost.
There’s still this very small but nagging thing in the back of my head, though. It’s like when you’re eatin’ a PB&J sammy and you get a raspberry seed stuck between your teeth. It’s delicious, but you can’t fully enjoy it cuz of that stupid seed. And you can’t get it out. It drives me friggin’ nuts. It’s Bartman. I know, I know, there was no sign of him last year, but I can just see him lurking in the shadows … with his mitt.
The missus says I’m like a dog with a bone with this Bartman thing, and that I’m cuttin’ years off my life by letting it stew for so long. She’s right, I know. But then, if the fully loaded barge of encased meat products I’ve eaten, and that cheese sauce on the ball park nachos (it looks like it’s radio active or something) haven’t corked up the old arteries yet, I think I can handle a few more years of pointing the finger at Bartman. I’ll get over it one day. Maybe. But for now, keep your eyes peeled. And if you do see him, please give him the official Bartman Welcome.
Hey there, rice cakes. Joe Schlombowski, super Cubs fan here, with a little dietary supplement you ain’t gonna find on the Food Network.
Let me say first off that outside of the official Major League Rule Book (which ain’t perfect, cuz it includes Rule 6.10 — look it up, Tin Roof) I’m not real big on rules. I’m more of a “guideline” kinda guy. Why? Cuz they’re practically the same damn thing, but guidelines are more forgiving. Like jeans with an elastic waste band.
Which brings me to the subject at hand: The Cubs are home; back in town sporting a 6-1 record, by the way. This means a lot of you will be heading to the yard, not just to see Maddon’s Mob, but to enjoy the smorgasboard of lip-smackin, finger-lickin, coronary-inducing delights that are a requisite part of going to a ball game. So you don’t embarrass yourself, I give you Joe Schlombowski’s unofficial guidelines for dining in the Cheap Seats — as if anything is actually cheap at Wrigley anymore. (Another subject.) I gotta warn you that these have not been approved by the FDA, nor are they recognized by the American Heart Association. (Hey, sorry about that 3rd person thing I did back there, but it just seemed to make sense in that spot. In general, though, it’s obnoxious. Like A-Rod.) Alright, here you go:
Hey there, Ouija boards, Joe Schlombowski here with a little analysis of why Addison Russell was destined to be the hero of last night’s come from behind thumping of the Reds.
Baseball is a sport full of superstitions, right? I mean, you got guys that put on the uni exactly the same way — every item in the same order — when they’re on a hot streak. You’ll also see guys step over the chalk when they’re running on or off the field (which never made sense to me cuz when they’re actually playing they don’t give a crap if they step on the lines). And then you got people like me, who never ever change their underwear in the middle of a winning streak. (The way things are going so far this year, it looks like I’m gonna get a little crispy, now and then.) You also got the curse of the billy goat, and the black cat thing at Wrigley … and let’s not forget Steve Bartman.
Chicago. The second city. The windy city. Whatever you wanna call it, I agree with The Chairman; “It’s my kind of town.”
Chicago has the best architecture. Period. We also have the best hot dogs and the best pizza (deep dish, my friend). There’s the Art Institute, the Bean, and a river winding through downtown that not only changed the direction it flows, but it turns green every year for St. Patrick’s Day. We’ve got Harry Caray’s in Chicago, the Miracle Mile, Rush Street and the El. We used to have Ed Debevic’s and the Sears Tower. Now: no Ed’s and the tower is called Willis Tower. To anyone from Chi-town, though, it’ll always be Sears.
Anyway, we got a lot of great stuff here, pal, more than most cities. But on the very tip top of the pile — above the fact that Michael Jordan became Michael Jordan here, above Mr Mike Ditka and da Bears, above the Green Mill or Buddy Guy’s or Second City — sits the Chicago Cubs and the hallowed confines of Wrigley Field.
I bring this up because today is the home opener between the 5 and 1 north-siders and the who-cares-what-their-record-is Cincinnati Red Stockings. (I like calling ’em by their given name cuz it’s, you know, weird.) Man, it’s nice to have baseball back in Chicago again. And by that I don’t mean it’s nice that it’s baseball season again. (Although it is.) What I mean is that it’s nice to actually have a Major League caliber ball club that calls Wrigley home.
Will this be our year? Does Howdy Doody have wooden balls?
Hey there, rag tops. Not to deviate from the fact that we capped off our road trip with yet another win (7-3 over the snakes … thank you) but I just can’t let this trip slide by without commenting on the abomination that is the D-backs uniforms.
I totally admit that after a game my t-shirt looks like Jackson Pollock attacked me with an economy sized French’s bottle. So who the hell am I to be pointin’ fashion fingers at anyone, right? In my defense, though, I think we all know that encased meats are messy (and delicious) epicurean delights, especially when properly overflowing with every item from the condiment bar. Therefore, getting a little dirty … well … that’s just part of the game, my friend. And I hasten to point out, accidental. (Hey, how’d you like that $10 word, “epicurean”, back there. Didn’t even have to look it up.)
Can you believe this? Rizzo’s got his name and mug on a cereal box. Let’s hope it’s the breakfast not just of champions, but of World Series champions in particular, my friend.