Team of Rivals

Cardinals cubs rivalry
Yankees/Red Sox.  Reagan/Gorbachev.  Lindsay Lohan/Sobriety.

Rivalries make otherwise routine matchups a bit more interesting.  They breed adrenaline.  They invite ingenuity.  They spark passion, no matter how dormant.

But, as we witnessed earlier this year in the case of San Francisco Giants fan Bryan Stow, baseball rivalries have also been known to get out of hand.

Admittedly, there was a time when I allowed my flippancy towards Chicago Cubs fans to reach a critical point.  In the summer of 2007, fresh off a World Series crowning but at a time when my Cardinals weren’t playing too well, a few too many Old Styles found their way in my system and what started out as simple boasts of pride for my interlocking “STL” and redbirds-on-the-bat garb soon turned into a verbal shouting match with a gang of pinstriped kids from DePaul.  Throughout the game, my taunting parried with their rage (they too weren’t quite sober) and it escalated when I found myself surrounded by them in a Wrigley field restroom. 

Instead of shutting up, I just got louder.

And before I knew it, I was at the bottom of a pile of angry, angry feet.

I learned my lesson that day: sports aren’t any fun when you’re literally getting your @$$ beat.

So I don’t do that sort of thing anymore.  I smile.  I nod.  I tip my cap to good plays and keep my nose buried in my scorecard (or beer). 

And that’s how I’m going to enjoy my Redbirds coming to town on Tuesday.

Also, I’m taking my pal, Johanna Mahmud — Cubs fan extraordinaire.  He’s scary looking… good for keeping the riff-raff at bay.

Hate me ‘cuz you can, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

10 Comments

I’m around the block, just outta sight…:-) Rivalry has memories for all I think, me I was at the Reagan/Gorby game on that moon-like lava rock island in a little town called Reykjavik….
Enjoy your trip to Cubieville….

and last and least is MB finally done?

Stay awake I could jump out from round a corner at anytime :-)

-peter

Rivalries always the event more fun, but the fans need to take these in stride. I’ve heard stories of kids being spit on at Michigan games for wearing Ohio State garb…really? Spitting on kids? It’s always good to have a scary looking guy with you in a crowd, but if you need a token Cub fan to hang with you, I’ll send Trevor down next time. Enjoy.
–Mike
http://burrilltalksbaseball.mlblogs.com

Enjoy the game! I’m glad you get to go. Is Johanna really going to keep you out of trouble or are the two of you just going to combine forces and incite blog and podcast fodder galore…I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
The ugly side of rivalries is actually why I don’t go to Angels/Red Sox games unless friends beg. The tickets are always more expensive and it seems like most of the major a-holes both sides can claim as a fan are a) at the game and b) playing to type in my presence. Even if we win, it doesn’t make for a fun game experience. Angels/A’s and Angels/Dodgers games on the other hand are a blast. Those rivalries play more like sarcastic siblings and make the game more fun.
- Kristen
http://blithescribe.mlblogs.com/

I doubt they’re physically afraid of Johanna; it’s the open shirt and…never mind.
Stylistically afraid; physically afraid…whatever works!!!
http://paullebowitz.com.previewyoursite.com/blog/?p=1093

Gotta love the rivalries. I’m puttin’ a toonie on the series.

—Mark Gauthier
http://cubden.mlblogs.com/

Peter — Good to know! Don’t be a stranger. Oddly enough, some people like what you have to say ;-)
Mike — I’m still shakin’ my head on Trevor’s loyalty. Maybe he just needs a nice Cardinals cap to change his mind.
Kristen — You’re right in that Jo will probably cause more problems than deflect them… se la vie. Wouldn’t be the first time! Still, I’m on good behavior nowadays. Now that I’m all grown up ;-)
Prince — Exactly. I’ll take it where I can get it. Fredo is a good yet simple boy.
Mark — Toon it up!
–Jeff

I hope you guys behave at that game. I don’t want to come on this blog and see pics of either of you with black eyes!

http://www.janeheller.com/confessionsblog

We’ll behave, Jane. I promise. I’ll be in rare form (translation: I’ll be sober).
–Jeff

Be Proud. Wear that Cardinals jersey in the Wrigley bleachers. But never poke the sleeping bear. Especially a drunk, sleeping bear. Hope you had fun. :)
~Rob
http://robsanto.mlblogs.com/

I did, Rob! As long as we keep winning series… that’s all that I can ask for ;-)
–Jeff

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