Monday, the Chicago Cubs broke the winter cold and brightened the locals' disenchantment. You see, the Bears aren't in the playoffs, the Bulls stink, and last week it was scraping 50 below zero outside. At least we do still have the Blackhawks.
And yesterday the Cubs announced the club's first ever mascot: Clark, a "young, friendly cub," who will soon be introduced as the permanent official mascot ahead of the 2014 season.
I did some sniffing around to get the lowdown on who the new cool kid was, and people were more than willing to talk. Getting the goods, I figured I would let you in on some details about Clark and "8 things you never knew about Clark The Cub". Here's what I found out:
1. Clark's middle name is Sheffield, and supposedly Waveland is his confirmation name.
2. Clark has a twin sister named Addison, who is currently couped up in rehab. The Cubs would rather not talk about Clark's bad girl sister, but Addison was once in the news after getting arrested at the Michigan Avenue Walgreens with Shia LeBeouf.
3. Clark has never pitched professionally. But even with four fingers on each hand he's a better pitcher than the former Cubs' reliever, Antonio Alfonseca.
4. Clark has an often-drunk uncle named Billy, strangely named after a goat, who is often seen outside Wrigley Field trading photo ops as the "unofficial mascot" for money. Getting fired after one season as the Ole Miss football mascot "Black Bear", Billy Cub is back at it, panhandling outside Brixen Ivy like old times.
Uncle Billy Cub hitting me up for change during the 2010 season.
5. Clark supposedly gets his name from Clark Street, one of the four streets on which Wrigley Field lies, however this is not confirmed by any official statement from the Cubs' organization. Rumors point to the fact that his mother, Ella, was a bit of a Def Leppard groupie and may have flinged around with Def Lep's late guitarist Steve Clark in the early '80s.
6. Clark has never been south of Madison Street, which means he has never been to the South Side, much less The Cell, home of the White Sox. Some Sox fans I spoke to talked of hazing and a possible kidnap plan in the works.
7. Clark's favorite pastime is making friends online. He's written and received emails from the Queen Máxima of the Netherlands and Harry Bellafonte. Clark has also received racy drunken texts from both Nicki Minaj and Jenny McCarthy, and is Facebook friends with Steve Bartman.
8. Clark has ADHD. You probably noticed in the picture above that he is wearing a shirt, his Cubs hat and shoes. He usually remembers his bat, but often he's not wearing pants.
Andy Frye writes more serious things for ESPN and Derby Life. You can follow his daily nimrodery on Twitter at @MySportsComplex.