Thursday, July 15, 2010

Some Cubs Traditions Just Won't Go Away: Steve Goodman

The Cubs added lights to Wrigley Field. They started playing walk-up music instead of organ preludes. They might put an end to the celebrity 7th-inning stretch (not that I've heard anything, but it could happen). They could sell the naming rights to the ballpark. Willis Field has a certain ring to it. They could stop playing day games. They could move. Bleacher aristocrats could stop throwing home-run balls back onto the field. Almost any Cubbie tradition could come to an end.

Almost. The one the Cubs don't appear to have any inclination to change is their bent toward losing with commitment and creativity. I posted this video around this time last year, so I thought I might as well make it a tradition for this blog. Because, although they might eventually choose a song other than "Go Cubs Go" to blare over the Wrigley loudspeakers, they'll always manage to live up to the dismal hopes of this Steve Goodman rhapsody.


  1. If Steve Goodman were alive today, he'd have a blog (A Dying Cubs Fan's Blog?) where he would be making the same complaints that we find in the Cubs blogosphere today.

    Of course he'd object to the recorded walk-up music - then he'd write his own that would be as clever as your blog posts and as biting as some of the things we read on Twitter or in the comments at places like LOHO.

    But he didn't have a blog ... he had his guitar, his voice, his song-writing talent and, like us, his irrational love of the Cubs.

    If anyone thinks Goodman's Cubs songs are too negative, too depressing (it's not clear from your post if you are part of this group, but I suspect you aren't) then they need to get a sense of humor.

    And then, to be consistent, they need to stop reading (or writing) the blogs we like, where Cubs fans commiserate, complain, demand that Hendry (or Piniella, or Zambrano, or Soriano, or ... ) be fired and threaten not to renew their season tickets.

    Depression is what Cubs fans do best - or at least most often - which is why so many of us like the songs that one of Chicago's greatest singer/songwriters wrote about his favorite team.

  2. Thanks, Ed. I don't find Steve Goodman too depressing at all. I hope I'm never accused of being too clear, either. I think folk music best captures the spirit of being a Cub fan, observing with a pensive sincerity and speaking with wry irony. The most optimistic Cubs fan takes on that attitude with at least a small amount of sarcasm, and the most jaded pessimist usually hangs on to the bandwagon by a thin filament of hope.

    I don't really think there's a right way to be a Cub fan. Sometimes the best you can do is ignore what people are saying. Other times it's worth making fun of people, including myself.


Spill it.

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