Ho hum! Another spring, another nail-biter for Cubs fans.
My Best Friend is still smarting from the end of football season and has been glued to the sports pages as pitchers and catchers reported for spring training. Now he tried to catch a few innings of the pre-season games.
Silly me. I was under the impression that Soriano had been traded. Still, there he is in the outfield and he booted a routine ground ball. My BF explained that it’s all economics. Soriano’s contract figures, when added to his age, makes it risky for other teams to take a chance. Fortunately, his five home runs, as of this writing, sound hopeful.
Castro is a year older, but maybe that’s a plus. If he added a few degrees of maturity when he added a candle to his birthday cake, we can hope.
I watched the other day when they interviewed the Cubs’ general manager. I hope he knows a lot about baseball, but he certainly wasn’t around when Abner Doubleday set it all in motion. I hope all he really has to know is who will fit into the game plan for the season and he doesn’t have to look like Doubleday to know that.
My BF claims to be one of the oldest living Cubs fans. He went to his first game at Wrigley with his dad, his uncle and his cousin when he was 8 years old. It takes him back a long way, but not far enough back to remember the last time the Cubs won the World Series. He hopes they can do that again — and soon! He wants a champagne toast while he can still lift a glass.
Dad was not a sports fan. You name the game, he wasn’t interested. So I came to the Cubs as an innocent prepared to believe they were the best.
I listened to the World Series when I was in fourth grade. Miss Hoadley was a big Cubs fan and brought a radio to school so we all listened to the games while working on our King Arthur scrapbooks. I had no idea what the cheering was about, but then there wasn’t much for Cubs’ fans to cheer about.
My BF took me to Wrigley as one of our first dates. I recall a brisk wind off the lake, it snowed and the Cubs lost. Was all that trying to tell me something?
Liz Ciancone is a retired
Tribune-Star reporter. Send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ho hum! Another spring, another nail-biter for Cubs fans.
- Liz Ciancone
LIZ CIANCONE: Withdrawn society not very social any more
My Best Friend and I went out for lunch the other day. It was a sit-down place with our own “server” (in my day I was called “a waitress”) and everything offering personal attention. The manager even came over to ask if everything was all right.
LIZ CIANCONE: Technology, new fabrics made ironing much easier
As surely as Tuesday follows Monday on the calendar, ironing day followed wash day on Mom’s housekeeping chart.
LIZ CIANCONE: Looking back at memories of ‘history’
I was reading a whodunit the other day. The protagonist was trying to solve the mystery of what had happened to a local citizen soldier who had disappeared during the war.
LIZ CIANCONE: Smell of fresh air gave way to dryers
Remember when clean clothes smelled like fresh air and sunshine rather than fabric softener and dryer sheets?
LIZ CIANCONE: Courts see a different appearance than cops
Have you ever noticed the transformation between the arrest of an accused lawbreaker and the first appearance in court?
LIZ CIANCONE: We always want more than we need
Washington seems more preoccupied with the unemployment rate than they are about the constant stalemate. Still with thousands out of work and the unemployment rate hovering somewhere between 7 percent and 9 percent, it does deserve more than a passing nod.
LIZ CIANCONE: Old age is in email of the beholder
My Best Friend isn’t much for writing letters, so email has opened a new world for him. He can dash off a few words to a high school friend or his college roommate — now living in Florida and Washington State,
LIZ CIANCONE: A memory test from the oldtime radio days
For some reason, I seem to be the go-to source for all sorts of obscure information out at the Wabash Valley Family Sports Center.
LIZ CIANCONE: Friskey no doubt was in favor of gun control
I once owned a gun. Actually, it was Dad’s gun and I was allowed to use it. He bought an air gun which shot BB’s to protect our home — in a way.
LIZ CIANCONE: A robin stops to welcome the spring
I saw a robin the other morning. It was not the first robin of spring, of course. A few of the more daring robins had opted to spend the winter and, although they looked pretty sorry about it on a few occasions, it was a fairly mild winter.
LIZ CIANCONE: The mystery of the small animal mascot
I hope you won’t think I’m picking on small animals, but I’ve been thinking about Easter and the Easter bunny.
LIZ CIANCONE: Rising up to defend the poor groundhog
I read in the newspaper the other morning that Punxsatawney Phil is being hauled into court and charged with falsely predicting an early spring. I am volunteering my services as counsel for the defense.
LIZ CIANCONE: Keeping eye out for signs of spring
The problem with expecting a groundhog to predict the arrival of spring is that there are groundhogs scattered all over the country. The Pennsylvania groundhog may not see the same kind of weather as the groundhog out here in Dobbs Park. In this way, false hopes are roused and the groundhog loses credibility as a meteorologist.
LIZ CIANCONE: Not every other name smells sweet as a rose
It was either Romeo or Juliet who said, “What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”
LIZ CIANCONE: Innocence appreciated when you’re growing up
I grew up rather stupid. I didn’t realize it at the time. Neither did my teachers who seemed to think I had “promise.”
LIZ CIANCONE: Years along rivers make them feel like home
I’ve been following plans for celebrating “The Year of the River” with interest. Rivers have played such a role in my life that I’ve celebrated a good many rivers. The Wabash River is merely the most recent example.
LIZ CIANCONE: There are always cat stories to be told
I was asked the other day why I write about dogs I have known, but never about cats. “What’s the matter?” they asked, “Don’t you like cats?”
LIZ CIANCONE: Sharing the family history
My Grandmother lived with us. Ed and I were eager audiences for her family stories about the Cooks. Mom also shared her memories of growing up with three brothers.
LIZ CIANCONE: Do we want our privacy or not?
We Americans are a strange bunch. We insist upon our right to privacy, yet we neglect few opportunities to parade our personal business in public.
LIZ CIANCONE: The low humor of Mickey Mantis
I’m told that a pun is the lowest form of humor. I guess that typecasts me! I love them, but then, I like any type of word play.
LIZ CIANCONE: For now, justice is served in Bball Hall
News this past week brought justice of a sort. The folks who decide these things have declined to pick anyone to be enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame this year.
LIZ CIANCONE: Well, what would you do with only 1 sock?
Let me ask you something.
LIZ CIANCONE: Movie memories don’t include many of the lengthy variety
There has been lots of reporting lately about how long movies are becoming.
LIZ CIANCONE: Resist that big ‘let down’ on the day after Christmas
Today is the big day. That makes tomorrow a sort of let down — rather like “What have you done for me lately?”
LIZ CIANCONE: No thanks to getting mags delivered via the Internet
I am a creature of habit. I like to know what I’m doing and I need to know how to do it. That’s why I am annoyed when corporate America seems determined to drag me, kicking and screaming into the age of Internet.
LIZ CIANCONE: Everyone has a favorite holiday
I suppose everyone has a favorite holiday. My guess is that, for most of us, that holiday is Christmas. It's a holiday with a miracle no matter how old we get.
LIZ CIANCONE: Christmas season puts time back into focus
It’s a funny thing about time. It can speed along so that you cannot believe that your kids can possibly be old enough to have good sense, or it can drag its heels while you wait for that first grandchild or while you are saving up for something really special.
LIZ CIANCONE: The bottom line is what drives ‘Black Friday’ sales
Why is it called "Black Friday"?
LIZ CIANCONE: Have we lost the meaning of holiday?
I’ve been considering a lost-and-found ad to see if anyone knows what’s happened to Thanksgiving.
LIZ CIANCONE: Magic is always there with live theater
I’m a pushover for live theater. But movies? Not so much. For me it’s like the difference between canned peas and those picked fresh from the garden. Movies even COME in cans.
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- LIZ CIANCONE: Withdrawn society not very social any more