Earlier this year, we all suffered through the playoff beards of hockey fans and players alike. The Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup, so obviously the superstition worked. Their winning had nothing to do with skill or stick-to-itiveness.
It was the beards.
I'm not sure if you've heard, but the Cubs are in the playoffs right now. I see fewer beards on the fans -- but plenty of beards on the players. (Why so many beards? Why must you hide your faces? They're nice faces.)
My family and I have been watching the games together. We watched game one of the NLDS at my house. The Cubs lost. So I never have to host again. My house has bad juju. Just the way I like it.
We watched game two at my brother's house. The Cubs won. Now he has to host and make us corned beef every game until the Cubs either tap out of the playoffs or win the World Series. That is the expectation and I will show up with my fork before every game and demand to be fed.
Because superstition. Because if we don't do these things, the world will implode and Jake Arrieta will break all of his limbs. (Yes, I spat on the floor after I typed that.)
I went to church on Sunday and when I stepped inside the vestibule, I immediately raised my hand in greeting. My grandfather was there. For a split second. Then I remembered that, nope. It can't be him. He passed away almost three years ago.
But he was without a doubt one of the biggest Cub fans I've ever known and maybe this was his way of saying, "This playoff thing? I'm on it." Maybe it was a sign. Maybe I'm trying to write off seeing ghosts as a totally legitimate sports happening.
The other thing I'm trying to write off? My playoff outfit. I knew I was just going to my brother's house a few doors down on Saturday evening, so I put on my Cubs T-shirt, a blue cardigan, and blue and white (Butler University) pajama pants.
The Cubs won.
Obviously it was because of my clothes.
Obviously I have to wear these pajama pants for every game.
Obviously I need to make the great sacrifice of being comfy cozy for every single game until they lose or run the table to a World Series.
Sometimes you have to suffer for your team, whether that means giving up the burden of shaving or trading your fashion sense for polka dotted pants.
It's all for the Cubs.
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