This was a pretty good weekend. The Cubs swept the White Sox in the second round of the Crosstown Classic. This was especially sweet since this half of the series was played in that God-awful ballpark on the South side, US Cellular Field. The cherry on top of the whole decadent, almost-better-than-sex sundae was this-the Cubs had never swept the Sox at the Cell. Or, for that matter, at Comiskey.
He he he he he! This is me doing the dance of Joy.
You have to understand-Chicago is a HUGE sports town. Sports is pretty well ingrained in the culture of ChiTown...it's hard to escape it. We have teams from all four major professional leagues in town (Football, Baseball, Basketball, and Hockey), as well as a professional Softball team, a professional Lacrosse team, a professional Soccer team, an Arena Football team, a "Minor League" Football team, and a "Minor League" Hockey team. We even have a WNBA team. They all get coverage during the sports segments on the local news. Sports here is pretty much unites the citizenry. I can't tell you how many conversations I've had with total strangers about the beauty of the Bears defense or the rebuilding of the Bulls. However, there is nothing quite like the Cubs or Sox debate here in town. You are either a Cubs fan or a Sox fan. There is no gray area.
Let me tell you, when the Sox went to the Series in 2005, Cub fans were actually rooting for the Astros. It wasn't because we are poor losers (we are used to losing)...it was simply because we knew what a torture our lives were going to be if the Sox won.
Listen, as a Cubs fan, you are used to disappointment. But I've gotta tell you...our collective psychic pain was exponentially increased that year. Not only did the Sox make the Series, but they ended up winning it in a sweep. Those four games gave the Sox fans years and years of ammunition in the perpetual war of the Cubs vs. the Sox. From that point forward, anytime a Cubs-Sox debated ensued, no matter how perfectly executed the argument for the Cubs would be, the person on the Sox side of the argument could win with one sentence: "Yeah, well...we have the ring. We won the series. When's the last time the Cubs did that?!?".
Well... in 1908.
But here's the thing...that argument only works for so long. Sports teams are a living, breathing organism, perpetually changing and evolving. You can't cling to a championship forever. And we Cub Fans are tired of hearing that "We have the ring" logic.
So, Sox fans, what has your team done for you lately? Let's look at the 2007 Season.
It's late June. Mid-season. The Cubs have a better record. The Cubs won both Crosstown Classic series. The Cubs are (finally) starting to pull it together and play ball as a team. Oh, and the Cubs routinely sell out their home park-despite their win/loss record.
When's the last time the Sox did that?