Last night, at 10:42 p.m., fireworks were going off all over my community. Neighbors were celebrating the first World Series championship in Chicago in 88 years. Thats a long time to go without a champion. In fact, only the Chicago Cubs, those lovable losers, are now more desperate for a championship, having not won in 97 years! And the die-hard Cubs fan had his worst nightmare come true last evening.
For Chicago fans like me I am not sure if we know how to savor this moment. Most of us have lived an entire lifetime without knowing what it meant to win in this city at all. If ever a fan base had to learn to wait patiently in adversity it was us. Year after year we made runs at it. Sometimes we even made the post-season, only to go out all too quickly. The last AL pennant was 1959. I still remember rooting for the Go-Go Sox, all speed and no hitting, who lost 4 games to 2 to the LA Dodgers. Well, the misery is finally over. We have twelve months to enjoy the success of a truly great team that played with heart and soul.
Columnist Jim Souhan, of the Minneapolis Star Tribune, covers the Sox rival Minnesota Twins during the season. He wrote last week that there was a lot to love about the hated White Sox. Souhan praised the Sox for their tenacity and gamesmanship. This team was not built by money or big named free-agents. It showed that intelligence and hard work do pay off.
Souhan summed up my own feelings, tongue-in-cheek, when he wrote: "The White Sox compete for their market share with the too-cute-for-words Cubs, the real ChiTown chokers. The Cubs are guaranteed sellouts because they play in a museum surrounded by bars, and are represented by a mascot favored by children and others without fully-formed brains."
If you love the Cubs don’t take that comment as a personal afront but in Chicago 9-1-1 is the Cubs "magic number" for us Sox fans.
Souhan added that "It’s hard work, being a White Sox fan. They should get to celebrate once a century." I can only say "Amen" to that after last night. Let the party begin. And let it last at least until next October! We are the champions of the world of baseball. Chicago does have a winner and its not the Cubs!!!! The sun over Chicago seems so much brighter today, at least for Sox fans.