By Matt Abbatacola-
(CBS) Dear Cubs fan,
I am giving you permission to “take a break” from your team. How long? You should walk away for as long as you need.
Come back in September or wait until next season. Heck, you can even wait until the Cubs make the playoffs.
Think about it. Wouldn’t it be nice to not have to watch or listen to these games? Wouldn’t you love to not know who they are playing or who’s pitching?
Recently, I had a conversation with a 60-year-old fan. He’s stopped watching the games. He’s had enough of the disappointment and frustration of following his team. After 50 years, I can’t blame him. Some of his fondest childhood memories are of his father taking him to Wrigley as a 10-year-old boy in the early 1960s. Regardless of the commitment level to his fanaticism in 2012 and beyond, those memories will last forever. He glances every so often at a box score or checks out the standings. When the Cubs become a major league ballclub again, he’ll be back to watch every game and devote his summer to his boyhood team.
I suggest that you do the same thing.
What have the Cubs given back to you? To say that they haven’t won a World Series since 1908 is being kind. The game in 1908 was nothing close to what the game is today. The Cubs lost the World Series in 1945. To think that the baseball that Pafko or Hack played back then is similar to what Hamilton or Jeter play today, would make you a crazy person.
Since my birth (1973) only three teams have not reached the World Series – the Mariners, who entered the league in 1977, the Nationals/Expos, who entered the league in 1969 and have only one playoff appearance, and the Cubs.
I believe that you deserve some time off for good behavior.
Each year, if I ask you to invest $10,000 into a company that has zero chance of returning a profit or even returning a single penny of your original investment, how many years would you give me your money?
How long have you been a diehard Cubs fan? Aren’t you tired? Take a break. Jump back in when it benefits you.
I don’t believe it would make you a bad fan. Has there been a more loyal fan base than Cubs fans?
The organization is headed in a different direction. The Theo-led plan is in the early stages of execution. It may take three full seasons to see an impact at the major league level. It may never happen. Why continue to ride a sinking ship?
There is no badge of honor in being a Cubs fan. It is a badge of disappointment and embarrassment. You are the punch line in every joke being told about the Cubs in the sports world, news media and Hollywood. Take off your badge and put it in a drawer. You can put it on again in a few years if the team is contending for a World Series. If not, wait a little longer. Wait as long as it takes. Why not?
It is said that a person who is dealing with a dependency issue needs to hit “rock bottom” before he/she can truly recover and begin to live a new healthy lifestyle. In business, if a company hits “rock bottom,” the doors are closed forever. The Cubs have hit a deliberate organizational low-point. Any other franchise that is this bad would need new ownership or move to a new city. The Cubs have ownership that allowed this free fall. The Ricketts will be here for decades. The Cubs move from Chicago – never. This is one company with a failing product that can remain in business and even be profitable.
The bottom line, the Cubs do not need you.
If you don’t go to Wrigley, someone else will. If you’re not watching the games, others will. Take a pass for a period of time – the Cubs will be there when you’re ready to come back.
You owe it to yourself. Haven’t you suffered long enough?