This Mets fan watched the historic game that began last night and ended in the wee hours of this morning as I’ve watched all the World Series games this year: wearing an authentic Cubs jersey.
If you spend enough money, you can personalize the jerseys with a name and number. Mine says GOODMAN, for the brilliant singer-songwriter and long-suffering Cubs fan Steve Goodman. I assigned Steve the number 48, for the year of his birth.
Although the lyric says “the Cubs are gonna win today,” the team plays the song only AFTER a win. One of the best things for me about watching these post-season games has been hearing Steve’s song playing over the stadium loudspeakers and tens of thousands of fans singing along with him.
In my eyes, Steve Goodman was the quintessential Cubs fan. Perpetually disappointed, he kept coming back to Wrigley year after year. Here he is, singing his second most famous Cubs song while sitting in the “friendly confines” of Wrigley itself.
Many people didn’t realize it, but Steve was the “dying Cubs fan.” Diagnosed with leukemia at age 20, doctors told him not to expect to see 21. But he fought hard and hung on until he was 36—dying three weeks before the Cubs secured their first postseason spot since World War II. Years later, his brother got someone to sneak him into the ballpark and he sprinkled some of Steve’s ashes in the outfield.
I’m happy for all of Cubs Nation as the team finally broke the curse. But I’m happiest for Steve. Wherever he is, I know he’s singing.
Learn more about Steve here. #GoCubsGo! See you next season.