Another Loss for the Chicago Cubs, and the Begetting of Joy

photo via chicagotribune.com


When you think of the Chicago Cubs, you might think of goats and curses, of yuppies and cell phones, or of fans that never stop believing, “This is our year!”  You might think about the seasons that almost were, or the seasons that were so painful to watch it was like pouring paint thinner into a knife wound. 

Yeah.  You’ll think about those a lot.

But, one thing you can’t fail to connect to the Cubbies and their years of pain and almost glory, is former player, baseball icon, and Cubs radio announcer, Ron Santo.  His familiar voice entertained listeners with play-by-plays that often consisted of, “Well…oh, oh, lookee there, oh boy!”  And, “Oh nooooo!  Oh man!”  But, you (almost) always knew exactly what he meant.  He was the ultimate fan with his heart gaping open on his sleeve — bleeding Cubbie blue.  

Whether you found his banter endearing or cringe-worthy, there is no disputing his devotion for the game, the Cubs, or for a job that he loved so much it often rendered him at a loss for words.

Yes, he loved what he did, and we loved him for it.

How many people can say they truly love what they do?  Not too many, I would guess.  Most people have this little thing they have to keep in check called “money,” and doing what they love doesn’t always pay very well.  Or, at all.  If only we could all find the joy of Ron Santo.  In a 4′ by 4′ cubicle.  Behind the sandwich counter.  Writing at a desk. 

Sometimes, if there’s no joy to be found, you have to create it yourself. 

So, this morning when my husband somberly announced to my baseball-loving son, “Hey buddy…I think Ron Santo died,” and I saw my son’s eyes well up a little bit, I knew he was going to miss hearing that joy.  And, I hoped that he — that all of us — would find such happiness in what we do.  Even among the drudgery.  Even among the have-to’s, and should-have’s. 

This may be another huge loss for the Cubbies, and one of the hardest yet; but in true Cubbie form we’ll bounce back.  This will be our year!  For Ron.

How’s that for some joy?


*Find me on Twitter @amandahoving

Note: Thanks for allowing me to go a little off-topic today.  We’ll be back to books and writing on Monday~

23 thoughts on “Another Loss for the Chicago Cubs, and the Begetting of Joy”

      1. Actually, both. Writing is sort of a joy (I mean what it produces at least…we have a bit of a love-hate relationship, writing and me, lol), and my day job is a blast.


  1. “Sometimes, if there’s no joy to be found, you have to create it yourself.” That’s about as true as a sentiment can get.

    So sorry for your loss. I’ll feel the same sadness when Jim Tressel leaves Ohio State, either for the Great Beyond, or another university.

    (I love that it’s snowing on your blog!)


  2. Very thoughtful post. I like my job, but I don’t love it or have a real passion for it. It pays the bills. But I try to create joy wherever I am, and find ways to duty. I also sneak in some fun whenever I can. One of my favorite movie quotes, from Love Jones, is “life is what you make and with whom you make it.” OK, so he actually said love, but it applies to life too! 😀


  3. Chicago is sad. Very sad.
    A friend son, summed it up rather nicely–Mr. Santos, you will always be in my hall of fame”.
    If you did not see this, Chicago is loving it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xBxZGQ1dJk (Steve Goodman: A Dying Cubs Fan’s Last Request). My favorite line goes “I’ve got season tickets to see the Angels play, and that’s just what I’m gonna do. But you, the living, you’re stuck with the Cubs….so it’s me…feels sorry…for you.”


  4. Oh, how sad :(… It’s so strange how people we don’t know at all except by their public work can feel so close to us, isn’t it? I know that I’d probably mourn the death of any of a number of extremely talented actors or radio personae that I admire, as well as authors.


  5. My father is the biggest Cubs fan on Earth. I’m telling you . . . he’s like those old Saturday night characters who’d day “Da Cubs.” Remember that bit? Anyway, this is sad news. 😦



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