How Zamboni knew the Cubs would win even when they were down 3-1

You’ll notice my last post was Oct 30th, when it seemed it would be lights out for the Cubs, When Cleveland had their Wahoo fingers around the necks of the cute and cuddly Cubbies, when it seemed all over. After all, coming back from being three games down to one?- it had only happened five times in 132 years of this batting game you Americans love. Yet I predicted a Cubs win. It was easy.

Zamboni knows the ultimate truth that all mortals know deep in their chotzkes:  Everything ends. Sometime. Every leaf, at some point, falls. Red Sox fans know this. Game of Thrones fans know. Mad Men watchers even faced the end. Sopranos too. Even my favorite author, Pulitzer winning Danielle Steele, may one day expire and stop spinning her beloved yarns…Fabio’s hair even, one day will cease.

Also, you remember the man who brought the billy goat into Wrigley field, was ousted and cursed them? IT WAS MY UNCLE!

Yes, this is factual and I can vilify it as well. My uncle Tormallen had come from Estonia, changed his name, and opened a pub. Of course he had his goat with him when he came over to this country and named his pub the Billy Goat Tavern as the bond between an  Estonian and his  goat is as strong as iron yet as tender and soft as a newborn baby’s willy.

And so he brought his goat to game four of the 1945 world series. Evidently the smell of his goat -which we Estonians barely notice- bothered some. Yet I believe it was intolerance to immigrants!! He was booted, and summarily spoke on his way out the turnstile, as his poor goats’ horns were entangled- “these Cubbies aint gonna win no more!”

Until last night. Because you see, even the curse of someone in the bloodline of Zamboni can only last a maximum of 71 years. (Unless of course you have the fingernail of a toothless fishmonger’s wife, the eye of a marmot, the toe of a tax collector, and an evil eye stone, put all said sundries in a bag, bury it beneath the victims home and say out loud 11 vigorous times the ancient bon mots “I FUCKING CURSE YOU GOOD MOTHERFUCKER!”, but old Tormallen did none of that. We all know an off the cuff curse has an expiration date.

And yet it is more than that. It is also due to the power of love, brotherhood and extreme emotional vulnerability. This is like a mighty wall that there is very little can trounce or triumph over.

Late in the game, Anthony Rizzo put his arms on the shoulders of veteran David Ross, and poured forth, “I can’t control myself..I’m trying my best…I’m an emotional wreck…I’m in a glass case of emotion right now…” And was at this moment when the “grit” was found to finally beat the Indians, and end the 71 year old curse, and the 108 year old drought, and win the World Series.

So there is your doggy bag  for today’s lesson. Always pour out your fears and anxieties to your friends, it is not weakness, but strength. Your little fears?- clowns, finding a bit of sand in your sandwich at the beach, the Kars for Kids commercial, who cares. But when you are in a glass case of emotion? Always.

‘I’m an emotional wreck’: Watch Anthony Rizzo’s touching dugout exchange with David Ross

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Will the Cubs win the World Series?

This question comes to me from my old Uncle Kringle, though he’s as Estonian as blood sausage and wife-carrying, he lives in Winnemucca, Nevada. He’s been there since age three when he was adopted by a family that drills for mines and for water for farmers in this remote desert land. Growing up in the outback of America, little Kringle and his friends had no baseball team to root for. But they did have the very strong signal of WBEZ Chicago, and so he and his desert friends grew up rooting for a team in a windy land far away that none of them had visited.

Anyway Kringle, I know it doesn’t look good right now, but Zamboni is here to tell you that yes, I do believe the cubs will still win.

Yet Uncle, you also know my credo, “only ask what is vital importance for you”.

Win or lose, how will this change your life?

If they win, will it mean for you that patience and time can overcome any curse, any obstacle? That no one is always fated to be at the bottom forever?

If they lose, will it just mean that though long suffering and waiting sucks- we can always yet do more?

Both are true. But above all importance:  the  faith that any of it matters.

Sports- they matter so much because they don’t.

Like William Carlos Williams and his red wheelbarrow, slick with rain.