Hawl In: Please, Cubs fans, for once just enjoy the show
CHICAGO – For just a second, get that song out of your head.
The one that plays after Cubs victories and has been going ad nauseam for the past few weeks as the baseball team on the North Side has ended their seven-year playoff drought.
“Go Cubs Go” is a great rally song by longtime Cubs fan Steve Goodman. I prefer “A Dying Cubs Fan’s Last Request” by the musician but that’s not the point.
If you are rooting for the Cubs in these playoffs learn a different tune to put you in the right mood and, more importantly, the right state of mind.
The song is called “The Show” by Lenka, an Austrailian singer who debuted it in 2008. Baseball fans might recognize the tune from the movie “Moneyball” which featured a version by Kerris Dorsey. She played the daughter of Billy Beane (Portrayed by Brad Pitt) and sings the song a few times in the film about the sabermetrics rise of the Oakland Athletics.
A few lines of the piece’s chorus stand out. They present the right attitude which an often-jilted Cubs fans should take to heart as the postseason starts (and maybe ends) Wednesday night in Pittsburgh.
“I’m just a little girl (or boy, woman or man, whoever you are)
lost in the moment
I’m so scared but I don’t show it
I can’t figure it out
It’s bringing me down
I know, I’ve got to let it go
And just enjoy the show”
Just to make sure it wasn’t just some creative words for a different meaning, I looked up Lenka’s inspiration for the song. Here’s what she told Spectrum Culture: “The song is about feeling like you’re not in control of your life and that the best thing to do is take a backseat and let go.”
Do you get it Cubs fans? The easy point that this song you should be listening to says.
Please enjoy the show.
History piles up like weights on rooter’s back once the calendar’s tenth month begins and the Cubs are still playing. There’s the Piniella sweeps, Bartman’s catch, Gonzalez’s error, the Braves’ sweep.
Stop. Catch your breath.
The unstoppable Will Clark, Durham’s error, Garvey’s homer and September of 1969. Sprinkle in legends of a curse and some wretched karma and you see why a couple of movies have been made about Cubs suffering.
So don’t do it. Don’t worry. Feel the shakescreep back up again as it has in 1984, 1989, 1998, 2003, 2007, and 2008. Then tell it where do go.
And just enjoy the show.
If anything you’re following the mantra of the man leading your team to their first playoff appearance in seven seasons. This is better that Dusty Baker’s “why not us” or Piniella’s “There are no curses” statements.
Joe Maddon’s“Do Simple Better” philosophy, pajama flights, American Legion “Show Up Late” week and mini-zoo with animals at Wrigley Field exemplify a man who is the antithesis of the attitude of a fan base.
When the heat of a pennant race crept in during the final two months, it was Maddon passing out the proverbial “Chill Pills” to his team and maybe a fan base.
Listen to what he said at his wild-card game news conference when asked about dealing with the pressure of a win-or-go-home game.
“The biggest thing is that you don’t want to — for me, it’s to not get your group to overthink it,” said Maddon in his normally calm and somewhat grandfatherly tone. “It’s not try to become a better team all of a sudden or try new things and become this great, creative force.
“Just go out and play. Go out and play, man. You’ve been playing all year.”
Even if it does end on Wednesday, and Jake Arrieta can’t keep up his incredible streak to end the year that rivals any pitcher in franchise history, he’ll be back. Jon Lester will be, too. Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, Kyle Schwarber aren’t going anywhere, either.
Hope was there for young players in the Cubs past but so many on one team at the same time. Patience was a virtue for Theo Epstein and his front office and the fruits will bear of the next few years even if everything doesn’t blossom over the next month.
But who knows. Maybe it will.
The point is not to prep you for a loss on Wednesday but rather to not think so much about the possibility of one. For too many years Cubs fans have been caught in the middle of a toxic mix of team mismanagement and karma that have accounted for many lost moments. It has fans scared of the postseason, unable to figure out what cruel fate might be bringing the team down.
But listen to the manager. Look at the future. Grab a beverage of choice and maybe some food around 7 PM tonight and all the nights the Cubs play.
And, for you own sake, just enjoy the show.