Tag Archives: Chicago Cubs

Double the fun

Nearly six years ago, when we first moved to Chicago, we lived down the street from a hole-in-the-wall, atypical Wrigleyville bar named Wrigleyville North. My husband (then fiance) and our friend Nick were regulars who affectionately called it “Country Bar” because a country band played every weekend. This band, much to Nick’s chagrin, played “Rocky Top” much too frequently.

I called it “Bad Bar.” Not because I didn’t like it. Mostly because it didn’t have much going for it in the way of ambience.

Some things don’t change. The bar is still unremarkable, but holds a place in my heart for its fond new city memories, decent jukebox, and of course, a ladies’ room with two toilets.

We never quite figured out why there are two toilets. Women don’t pee next to each other. Hmmm.

We went back to Wrigleyville North last weekend after a Cubs game as a large group. Not to hear the country band, but this time to honor Nick. Maybe it was a combination of his presence, our dear friends being in one place, and distraction pool (I’ll explain this another time), but I can’t honestly remember having so much fun at that bar.

I’d like to think that Nick is somewhere now wearing his Cubs jersey, enjoying an Old Style and shaking his head at the sound of Rocky Top.

Cheers.

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Filed under Chicago, city life, random

Nacho helmets mean summer

During winter, I forget why living in Chicago is great. Then, summer arrives.

The reminders are everywhere. You know, like al fresco dining. Street festivals. Roofdeck views. Enjoying beers poolside with friends.

And baseball games. I’m not the uber fan that my husband is, but I do like some lounging outdoors, the competitive atmosphere and ballpark food.

Speaking of ballpark food, have you ever seen nacho helmet at a Cubs game?

We went to a game last weekend, and our friend Eric’s #1 goal for his birthday that day was taking down the nacho helmet. Being the good friends we are, we helped his wildest birthday wishes come true.

Presenting a food feat worthy of Man Vs. Food:

Delicious. Four of us couldn’t take this tasty beast down, but at least Eric took home a birthday souvenir.

"Can I close my eyes?"

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Filed under Chicago, food

The 5 people you meet at a Cubs game

Baseball is America’s favorite pastime. Or so I’ve heard.

I don’t consider myself a big sports fan. My level of fandemonium looks more like humoring, a.k.a. hanging out with the man I married—who is the ultimate sports fan. Actually ultimate is an understatement. He’s the guy who knows which colleges every professional cricket player attended. He’s also the guy who will arrive to a game four hours early to get a free bobblehead.

The latter part may or may not have happened yesterday. I’m too embarrassed to confirm or deny.

In other words, Joe and I went to a Cubs game last night. And because he arrived so embarrassingly early to fight over baseballs with kids during batting practice, we got pretty fantastic seats in the bleachers.

Oh, hi. Is that the second row in the bleacher section? Why, yes it is. Thanks for asking.

Is that the second row of the bleacher section, you ask? Why, yes. Yes it is.

Right up close and personal with the scoreboard

Sitting quite cozy with the scoreboard

Now because of this aforementioned ultimate sports fan, I’ve attended countless sporting events over the years. Which I honestly do enjoy, especially the Cubs games. Wrigley Field is the perfect venue for sitting outside on a warm summer day, drinking a frosty beer and making Joe fake jealous by spouting off inappropriate things about Derrek Lee. These are things I can get behind.

Wrigley has a charm that is lacking from, say U.S. Cellular Field. It has everything to do with the quaint ivy, manual scoreboard and nearly a century’s worth of home runs, players and fans canonized in its concrete walls. And then there are the fans, the most dedicated cast of characters I’ve ever seen. When I say characters, I mean it. They’re boisterous, fun, and more often times than not, drunk. I enjoy them.

I’ve been to many many Cubs games, and the cast remains the same. Here are the five people most commonly encountered at a Cubs game:

1) The Frat Boy/Wooooo! Girl

I’ll try not to stereotype here, but it’s hard. I’ll just say it: Wrigley Field can sometimes feel like it’s setting a Guinness world record for biggest frat party. The Frat Boy is one of the many attendees. He’s betting his buddy a beer that they can name all the Cubs hall-of-famers. He may or may not be wearing a backwards hat and khaki cargo shorts. His friends can be seen striking up conversation with some pretty young things in the next row.

If the Frat Boy brings a girlfriend to the game, it’s usually Wooooooo! Girl. She doesn’t know what she’s cheering for, but “woooo”ing and “Go Cubs”ing all nine innings. Sometimes, she’s had too much to drink. “Woooooo!”

2) The Heckler

The Heckler is usually a fan of the opposing team. He wants to start a fight, which is quite obvious once he tells everyone how much the Cubs suck and reminds the crowd how long it’s been since the Cubs have won a world series. Yes, we’re all aware. The part of The Heckler was played by this Jack Black twin in the Phillies jersey last night:

photo-23

Phillies won the world series last year. Everyone gets it.

3) Family Guy

Family Guy is the busiest person in the stands. He’s making trips to and from the concession stand and the bathroom, earmuffing his young children from The Frat Boy and The Heckler’s expletives, and in between it all, trying to eat his hot dog and catch a pitch or two. Family Guy has spent $200 and only seen 10 minutes of the game. I am rooting for this guy the whole time.

4) The Motor Mouth

There’s always that one person who talks too much during the game. He or she may be muttering under the breath or talking loudly to all of his or her new best friends in the stands. Last night’s Motor Mouth was the mother of seven children. I know this because she said it 30 times. She told everyone 50 times that she was saving a seat for a friend who was only four blocks away, even at 8:30. She was passing around every type of food, trying to set people up on dates and talking incessantly about her firefighter husband. Yet, she made best friends with guys below us who bought her another iced down white wine.

5) The Nerdy Sports Guy

There’s always a guy tracking the game on a scorecard, often listening to headphones “Bartman” style. The Nerdy Sports Guy might also be seen rocking Cubs gear from his hat to his shoes. You might also spot this guy with his jersey tucked in.

I’d like to add a caveat is that these all are generalizations. I know this. The cast of characters at Cubs game is much more diverse and expansive. These are simply the fans who stand out the most.

Which role do I play, you may ask? Most likely the girl who asks too many stupid questions and plays with her iPhone too much. I hate that I’m that girl.

Which Cubs fan are you?


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Filed under Chicago, city life, culture, sports