Cubs-Padres: Fats McGee, Cubs jerseys and face punching

Longtime friend and rabid Cubs fan Ted Rosenbaum is gracing us with part two of his experience at last night’s turd of a Cubs game. Mr. Rosenbaum graduate from Penn in something to do with engineering (fancy!) so that makes him more than qualified to write for Midwest Swing, where we only require that our writers are literate in the loosest sense of the word.

In case Andy’s too deep in denial to call it, I’ll say it: Yesterday broke the Cubs back. Coming off a sweep by the Phillies, they took 2 from the Pirates, then the rain gave the bullpen a day of rest (unlike God, they didn’t deserve it) and so they came to the Whale’s Vagina trying to get some momentum before facing the Dodgers in a weekend set. They’re one strike away from starting the series with a win, and then Kyle Blanks remembers how to hit a first pitch cock-shot fastball. (sidenote: FUCK YOU KEVIN GREGG) Tonight, they come out flat.

Leave Ryan Dempster out to dry and fool Blanks into thinking he’s still a good hitter (He wore the sombrero and still hit an inside the park HR in the same game? Get Elias on the line) mean the Cubs lose. None of this applies to Derrek Lee, who continues to be the cat’s pajamas (editor’s note: Cats do love pajamas). Still, I’m hereby transitioning into There’s Always Next Year Mode (TANYM). I’ll still go to the game tomorrow, still imagine that Miller Lite in my hand is an Old Style, still hold out that glimmer of hope that Albert Pujols gets hurt — maybe I’ll see that this weekend? — and the Cubs make a run, but I’ve got three fantasy football drafts in the next two weeks. This ship has sailed.

By and large, Cubs fans are a classy lot. We roll deep, and know that just showing up in a sea of blue can irk the home fans. So we front the “Midwestern Nice”, and when they yell at us, we just turn our backs on them. This probably just makes them jealous though, because we rock some really outstanding jerseys. I only saw one Sammy Sosa jersey all night.

Instead, I saw six Ryan Sandbergs, two Andre Dawsons, a Shawon Dunston, Fergie Jenkins, too many Lees and Aramis Ramirezes to count, and one Ron Cey (Ron Cey!) which is exactly as many times as I saw Alfonso Soriano on a fan’s back. Unforunately, there are exceptions to this rule. I had one sitting next to me tonight. He spent the night telling Geovany Soto he’s a bum — while Soto is up 2-1 in the count! Your typical drunk bleacher bum with a SoCal twist: white hair in a pony tail, camo cargo shorts and black crew socks in gym shoes. Couldn’t make this stuff up. Too bad my camera’s broken.

Thankfully, this guy had the quintessential Ignorant Suit in Expensive Seats Spewing Utter Nonsense (ISESSUN) sitting behind him. Fats McGee (not sure of his real name, but I didn’t hear his Asian Trophy Wife (ATW) actually use his name, so Fats McGee it is,) and said ATW spent the game making less sense than a death panel protester (ooh! Topical!)

The idiocy was impressive: “The Cubs are the lovable losers. Haven’t been good for the last decade, and they’ve been around forever but have never won a World Series.” I suppose if you ignore the rings in 1907, 1908 and the playoffs in 2003, 2007, and 2008, then he’d be right … And the coup de grace from the wifey: “Mike McGwire? No, Mark. Mike? Whatever. He had such a pretty swing. Yeah, the steroids and all, but he had such a pretty swing.” Do you know how hard the rest of the country makes it to maintain “Midwestern Nice” and not punch them in face?

On a completely separate note that may only be of interest to me: Will Venable plays for the Padres! This gave me the only fun part of my night, since he was a part of one of my favorite memories at Penn. My freshman year, we were down 17 points to Princeton with about 8 minutes to go, before mounting the greatest comeback I’ve ever seen live.

Well here, I’ll just let the Zapruder-esque footage speak for itself:

Will Venable is all over this highlight. He’s the guy that fouls the Penn shooter at the very start for a 4-point play. He misses defense on the backdoor cutter on the next play. Then throws a pass away. He gives another one away in overtime. Basically, he was the Kevin Gregg of that game. And every time he got to first base near my seats (three whole times!) I got to remind him of that game. Sure, everyone in my section thought I was a raving lunatic, but I’m pretty ok with it. I’ve reached a peaceful zen about it, just like with this season.


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