Rub it in...when you win

So there's this guy, Phil Luciano, who writes "opinion pieces" for the Peoria Journal Star, and he just wrote a piece about how Sox fans are better baseball fans than Cub fans. He writes this in Peoria, Illinois, where paradoxically a majority of the residents are Cardinal fans, and where the minor league team is a Cub affiliate. His arguments were the usual Sox vs. Cubs drivel, read it here if you haven't heard it all already. I just couldn't help but respond. I do this because I'm feeling good, really I am. I am good, I assure you.


Since you were kind enough to point out to your eager readership, if in fact such a thing exists, the characteristics typical of Cubs fans, at least from the addled, bitter point of view of the typical Sox fan, I find it necessary to offer this addendum. There's one thing about Sox fans that makes them easy to spot: no matter how bad or good the Sox are playing, their fans can't help but compare their joys and/or woes against those of their hated rivals, the crosstown Cubs. This would make sense if the Sox were enjoying any sort of success in comparison to the Cubs. But the truth of it is, in the last century or so, the Sox haven't won a heck of a lot more World Series than their hated rivals; in fact, the last time the Sox had a chance to play in the Fall Classic, they decided to throw it for about a grand a man.

If the Sox win, take all the lumps you want on the Cubs--you'll deserve it. But the Sox aren't winning much more than the Cubs, especially not now, nudge nudge, so who do Sox fans have left to hurl their spitballs at? Why, the Cub Fans, of course. Here we have the second easily-discernible trait of a Sox fan: if Sox Nation has an enemy worse than the Chicago Cubs, that enemy is none other than the United States of Cub Fandom. And considering that those fans make a considerable showing at any ballpark the Cubs play at throughout the country, one can easily determine that the U.S. of Cub is large indeed.

So what's wrong with this teeming mass? Well they drink beer, for one thing. Since we're playing apples and oranges, there's no way we can call Sox fans hypocrites, unless we admit that the each concession stand across Commiskey--excuse me, U.S. Cellular Field, sells a different kind of beer. What would a stadium full of teetollers need with such a wide variety of beers? Especially in the American League, which used to be known as the "Beer and Whiskey League" in the halcyon days before prohibition?

Before we try to answer that unanswerable, let's consider what else is wrong with Cub Fans. In the eyes of Sox fans, it's the cardinal sin: Cub Fans are way too loyal to their team. They just keep buying tickets and showing up at Wrigley Field every day as though there was some sort of notable public event going on there--like a Major League Baseball game or something. Only a Sox fan, the most bitter, hateful, angry lot one can possibly encounter in baseball, would utter such incomprehensible drivel as this:

"When the Sox play lousy, their fans say so - and stay away from the ballpark. That's how capitalism is supposed to work." Phil Luciano

You're right about that--the Sox can hardly give away tickets to their games, much less fill their man made chasm of a ballpark. They have to resort to all kinds of base gimmicks to get people through the doors: half-price Mondays, dollar-dog Thursdays, fireworks on Fridays, and the upper deck, or as most people call it, the ozone layer, still sits empty. I bet Jerry Reinsdorf or Ozzie Guillen don't think this way, but you can bet that the few Sox fans that do show up on a typical night, or at least the ones who aren't jumping onto the field and bum-rushing umpires or opposing coaches, are pleased as punch that there aren't a whole lot of people hanging around at their ballgame. Because normal people just wouldn't "get" their baseball team. They wouldn't "understand."

Maybe if there were more "baseball fans" showing up at Sox games, then maybe the people of Peoria wouldn't have had chip in their own hard-earned tax dollars to help build that intimate little hang-out spot on the South Side of Chicago, U.S. Cellular Field, which of course was built solely for enjoyment of those few sensitive souls that give a darn about the Chicago White Sox, that little team that apparently can't. Hey, even Cub fans had to chip in tax money to build your monstrosity of a ballpark--that's money that could have been spent on beer, something Sox fans wouldn't know about, or spent on a ticket to a Cub game, which would be an expression of loyalty to the team they love, ultimately putting uniforms on players and players on the field. But Sox fans wouldn't understand that sentiment much, either. Sox fans are far too mature and austere to feel unabashed loyalty for a matter as trifling as baseball, although unlike Cub fans, Sox fans are "real" baseball fans.

Anyway, these days, as the leaves start turning and the Boys of Summer start leaving for points south, Sox fans have bigger things on their mind. They're too busy consoling themselves with the fact that although their team is well on their way to completing what will soon be known as the most notorious and tragic choke-job in baseball history, at least they're not Cub fans. They're "real" baseball fans.

Bedheaded, Cub Fan
Chicago, IL

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