Nothing beats baseball

Wow! What a game at Wrigley Field today! I was fortunate enough to be there, and to stay until Darwin Barney came through with a 2-out, 2-strike, 2-run home run in the ninth inning to tie the score. Not since the Michael Jordan era has sports been that exciting for me. It’s been a downContinue reading “Nothing beats baseball”

Frustration bubbles over

Photo from BleedCubbieBlue When I think about the end of this baseball season, I’m not happy. The playoffs are not coming to the North side of Chicago, for the fourth year in a row. But I wasn’t expecting them to, so that’s not a big disappointment. What really gets me is the goal that theContinue reading “Frustration bubbles over”

The Cardinals and the Cubs

I grew up about a hundred miles away from St. Louis, Missouri. Chicago was 200 miles away, and seemingly in a different world. So when I came to Chicago, as people from all over the midwest do, I had an adjustment to make. I was a Cubs fan already, but I had to recalibrate myContinue reading “The Cardinals and the Cubs”

In the Midnight hour

Thanks to a night game at Wrigley Field, and a very long rain delay, today I had the rare opportunity to have a baseball experience late at night. So late that it was technically the next day. Here’s the story of this experience, which appeared today on ThroughTheFenceBaseball.com. I hope it gives even the slightest senseContinue reading “In the Midnight hour”

Dating an old photo

The picture above was referenced in an earlier piece I wrote in this space. But I wanted to return to it once again, to show how the internet has changed things. This is especially true of doing research. What once took days to track down, or just couldn’t be tracked down at all, can nowContinue reading “Dating an old photo”

Wrigley, Ronny and the Boss

ChicagoSideSports is a new website in town, and it focuses on topics that mean a lot to me. Chicago is a great sports town, and ChicagoSide presents angles on it that national outlets like ESPN never could. I was thrilled when my first piece for them was published a couple of weeks ago, and evenContinue reading “Wrigley, Ronny and the Boss”

Mission Accomplished

If there’s a piece of advice I would give to someone going to a Bruce Springsteen concert (other than to go in the first place), it would be don’t be disappointed if he doesn’t play a particular song, unless it’s “Born to Run.” With hundreds of songs on his albums, and fans who bring signsContinue reading “Mission Accomplished”

Bruce Springsteen and the power of rock and roll

For several years, I waited for a chance to see my next Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band concert. Then it was announced he would play at Wrigley Field, and I bought tickets to the show . For many months, I lived my life knowing that the Springsteen show was off in the distance,Continue reading “Bruce Springsteen and the power of rock and roll”

Out on the edge

In just about 48 hours from when I’m writing this, the Bruce Springsteen show at Wrigley Field will be wrapping up. When the tickets went on sale, it seemed like a long time away. And now it’s almost here. The passage of time isn’t always something I like, but in this case I’ll take it.Continue reading “Out on the edge”

One week to go

It’s Friday night, and at this time next week Bruce Springsteen will be onstage at Wrigley Field. September once seemed far away, and now it’s almost here. It promises to be a rockin’ good time. Earlier this week I had a piece published on ChicagoSideSports about how Springsteen will be the first artist to playContinue reading “One week to go”

A myth debunked

A July afternoon, Chase Park My younger daughter is enrolled in a swimming class at a pool that’s not quite in our neighborhood, but not terribly far away, either. The heat of this miserable summer claimed a few of the lessons, when the pool was overrun by those wanting to beat the heat more thanContinue reading “A myth debunked”

A double play of art and baseball

My favorite movie, hands down, is Field of Dreams. As a baseball fan, I suppose that makes sense. But it’s really not about the game on the diamond, as much as it is about having a love for the game, and what it represents. It’s the kind of movie that, if you buy into theContinue reading “A double play of art and baseball”

Come on up for the risin’

Bruce Springsteen played Fenway Park the last two nights, and by all accounts they were blockbuster shows: three and a half hours, new music, old favorites, cover songs, and a Johnny Pesky tribute. What more can anybody ask for? My iPod is going to be shuffling Springsteen songs–and probably nothing else–between now and September 7.

A sort-of homecoming on Chicago’s North side

The upcoming Bruce Springsteen concerts in Wrigley Field in September promise to be a good time. But it’s not widely-known that Springsteen’s first show that wasn’t on the East coast came way, way back in early 1973, at a Chicago club known as the Quiet Knight. I wasn’t in Chicago back then, but if IContinue reading “A sort-of homecoming on Chicago’s North side”

A no-no-no

The Cubs managed just one hit tonight against A.J. Burnett of the Pirates. Burnett had a no-hitter into the 8th inning of tonight’s game, and only a single by rookie Adrian Cardenas stood between Burnett and an historic feat. As the saying goes, close but no cigar. Most people are aware that the last timeContinue reading “A no-no-no”

Freebird!

Tonight, to celebrate my daughter’s birthday, my family and I went out to a supper club-type of a restaurant. It’s the kind of a place where, leaving the servers and waitstaff aside, my presence in the place brought the average age down considerably. But they wouldn’t still be in business if the food wasn’t good,Continue reading “Freebird!”

Jake-on-the-spot

It’s now two months away from the Bruce Springsteen show at Wrigley Field. Now that my much-anticipated trip to Cape Cod is over, that’s the next big thing I have to look forward to. The Cubs are usually how I mark my time in the summer, and that won’t work this year. The heat waveContinue reading “Jake-on-the-spot”

Forget about the goat

Before reading any further, I want you to think of an unlucky number. I’m willing to say that the default answer is the number 13. Absent some searing personal tragedy–like someone who lost their job on January 6 and now considers 16 to be unlucky–most people just accept that there’s something unfortunate attached to theContinue reading “Forget about the goat”

It’s time for Chicago’s Civil War

Baseball and Chicago are just meant for each other. People sometimes say this is a Bears town, but in reality, there are just eight Bears games played in Chicago every year (ten if we’re really lucky). The Cubs and the White Sox, however, play that many games in a little over a week. And whileContinue reading “It’s time for Chicago’s Civil War”

But nothing on jersey night

I’m back after a weekend in Cleveland, which was loaded with family, baseball, and rock n’ roll. In other words, all of my favorite things. I could, and probably will, tell lots of stories about the Rock Hall, but those will wait until I have some time. But for now, a baseball tale will haveContinue reading “But nothing on jersey night”

A fleeting Cub’s story

It’s Opening Day, 1973 at Wrigley Field. Baseball has returned from a long winter’s nap, but it’s still in a daze. During the offseason, one of its brightest stars, Roberto Clemente, was lost in a plane crash in Puerto Rico. The Pirates came within three outs of the 1972 World Series, but that seems lessContinue reading “A fleeting Cub’s story”

My baseball baby

The picture above was taken in the summer of 1999. My last post about seeing Bill Clinton in Wrigley Field that year got me thinking about this topic, and this is one of the pre-digital camera photos that until this moment has only existed in a box in my basement. By digitizing it, and puttingContinue reading “My baseball baby”

Bill Clinton at the ballpark

I live in Chicago, and by now I’m used to the Secret Service helicopters flying over my house whenever the President or his family are in town. The military helicopters are usually the ones I hear, and they’re always gone in a flash. I’m sure that’s a good thing for keeping the President safe. SoContinue reading “Bill Clinton at the ballpark”

Here’s how to win the pennant

I’m a big fan of thrift stores and garage sales. The top reason why is because I love the idea that somebody once paid retail price for something, and I’m picking up the same item for a quarter or 50 cents or, if it’s really a nice item, one dollar. It’s not very glamorous toContinue reading “Here’s how to win the pennant”

Remembering the Hawk

One of the themes running through the “Don’t Blame Steve” song and video is admiration for Andre Dawson (or “Hawk Dawson” as he’s referred to in the video). Dawson only played six seasons in right field at Wrigley Field, or roughly half as long as Sammy Sosa’s tenure there. But believe me when I sayContinue reading “Remembering the Hawk”