Could it be?

I watched The Game last night with friends. We clapped, chortled and cheered.  Held our breath.  And lo and behold – our collective elan carried the day. The Cubs won.  The Cubs are in the WORLD SERIES.  Be still my heart.  Four more games to a miracle. . . .

I’m sure the ACLU and many vapid millennials chafe at the political incorrectness of cheering for one “team” to succeed and for another team to buried in oblivion.  After all – how discriminatory.   Tsk tsk.  Nonetheless, I’m sure even those misguided souls would not object when a Chicagoan yells “GO CUBS” – “CLOBBER THOSE INDIANS.”  Unless they’re from Cleveland . . . . . . 

Temperature Rising

(Same subject – same month – different year.  My post of 10/15/2015)

When I was a kid, I had major Cubs fever. But I gave up on the Chicago Cubs years ago. And that put the kibosh on baseball altogether. I can honestly say that I have not watched or listened to a single baseball game in years. I have not watched a single inning of baseball save when I would get my hair cut and some game would be on the tube. If that happened, I would turn away from the screen. And watch the hair fall from my head.

The Cubs have been such a disappointment that I have not been able to bear the thought of them. In the last few seasons – Scout’s Honor – I could not name one player on the roster.

On Wednesday, October 7th, that changed. A resurrection if you will. The Cubs were up against the Pittsburgh Pirates in a one game, winner-take-all playoff. It was a 7:08 pm starting time. Why 7:08? Think military time. 1908. The last time the Cubs. . . . Anyway, I thought what can it hurt. So I had dinner, headed upstairs, piled pillows on the bed and turned on the t.v. Kicked back. And watched. And miracle of miracles. The Cubs won. Now, I have watched or listened to four games in a row. Last night the Cubs beat the Cards. And my temperature is rising. . . . .

So when the NL playoffs begin, I will watch. I am ready to be disappointed. But I will hope. And if the Cubs make it into the World Series, I will be watching. I have heard that Jack Brickhouse, Lou Boudreau, Harry Caray, Vince Lloyd, Ron Santo, Jack Quinlan and Ernie Banks will have front row seats for all the games. Oh and my idol – Hank Sauer (see 8/2/11)? He’ll be in the Cubs dugout — ready to head to the outfield if needed. . . .

No Play Date for Donald. . . . .

True story. . . .

My 4-1/2 year old granddaughter was sitting at breakfast this morning. She was looking at pictures in the Chicago Tribune. “Who’s this?” she asked – pointing to a picture of Donald Trump.  “I see him a lot.”

That’s Donald Trump” my daughter explained.

Is he a nice man?” my granddaughter asked.

Not really” said my daughter.

My granddaughter thought for a moment and responded “If he’s not nice, I don’t think I will ever ask him for a play date.

She probably won’t ask Hillary for a play date either. . . . .

Stop & Frisk

(A timely repeat from 8/23/13)

Years ago, when I was an Assistant States Attorney, I occasionally rode along with Chicago Police. One day, we were driving on West 18th Street. Suddenly, the officer in the front seat pointed at a car going in the opposite direction and hissed “They’re dirty.” We squealed a U-turn, going boots and saddles (lights and siren). The car stopped, officers hopped out – guns drawn. Pointed.  In the car were two gang bangers (both with records), drugs and two sawed off shotguns. I often wonder whose life was saved that day.

New York City’s murder rate fell from the thousands to a few hundred thanks to stop & frisk “with reasonable suspicion.” The bad guys didn’t know when they’d be stopped so they weren’t packing. Chicago on the other hand is the murder capital of the (un)civilized world. Thousands of shooting victims. Many innocent. Many spontaneous. Explosions of gunfire. Especially in poorer neighborhoods. But of course Chicago doesn’t have stop & frisk. As it “may offend.” Result? Gangs rule. Senseless violence. Mayhem. Butchery. Death. And Chicago continues sliding into the abyss.

Police are not the problem. Criminals are the problem. The bad guys. Chicago gun laws are the most stringent in the country yet the bad guys have guns. But in Chicago, there’s no deterrent for the bad guys who carry them. And then use them.

Obviously it’s a tough situation. There are no easy solutions to this problem but ignoring stop & frisk as an option is madness. I cannot fathom the mindset of those misguided souls who oppose stop & frisk with reasonable suspicion. If they want to debate the statistics or the Fourth Amendment issues, they will lose.

Wisconsin Supper Clubs

Have you ever been to a Wisconsin supper club? If you haven’t, you’re missing a major life experience. Wisconsin supper clubs have a presence in most parts of (duhhh) Wisconsin. Little, sometimes out-of-the-way towns will have good restaurants that feature four course meals: soup; salad; main course; and dessert. And of course there’s the obligatory beverages: beer; spirits; and jug wine (though sometimes one is surprised by a genuine “wine list”).

When you enter a supper club, you usually pass the bar.  The trick is – do not pass the bar.   Ever.  There’s a protocol.  In most places, you go to the bar, say hello to the bartender and indicate you would like a table.  He (or she) will then give you the once over.  Make a mental note that you want a table.  And ask if you want a drink.  You must always say “yes” to the drink.  Or you may still be sitting at the bar at closing time.  At some point, a table will open and you’ll be escorted into the dining room. Immediately a relish tray, menus, water, bread and butter will be plopped on your table.    

Menus contain the usual assortment of two, four and no-legged protein.  My suggestion is go for the fish.  Usually perch or walleye.  Interestingly walleyed pike from Wisconsin may not be served in Wisconsin.  Walleye all comes from Canada.   Regulations. . . . Your entree includes mashed or baked potatoes and vegetables (sometimes canned).  Soups are usually onion or some “cream of” soup.  There’s often a salad bar. Served salads can be disappointing.  If that’s the option, have the blue cheese dressing.  I mean – what the hay?  But the spigot is on — from bar to your table so you may have as much fire water as you want.  Dessert is usually a chocolate sundae in a shiny tin cup.  

I’ve been to my share of supper clubs – mostly in Door County and Northern Wisconsin.  Guide’s Inn in Boulder Junction and Birmingham’s on County B north of Sturgeon Bay are favorites.  These are two I would go back to again.  And again.  And order the fish. . . .     


Anyone who follows professional golf knows the name “Feherty.”  David Feherty was born in 1958 in Northern Ireland.  He grew up playing golf and in 1976 turned pro — spending  most of his career playing in European tournaments.  He was good enough to make Europe’s 1991 Ryder Cup team.  He retired from the Tour in 1997 and joined CBS Sports as a golf analyst and commentator.  He is now with the Golf Channel and NBC Sports.   

In 2006, Feherty went public about his long history of depression and alcoholism.  When Tom Cruise – actor and Scientologist – opined that only exercise can cure depression (and that drugs and therapy don’t help), Feherty responded that “actually, some sort of exercise would have helped me.  If I had kicked the #%&X out of Tom Cruise, I’d feel a lot better about myself.”   

Feherty is known for hysterical one liners.

That ball is so far left, Lassie couldn’t find it if it was wrapped in bacon.”

Watching Phil Mickelson play golf is like watching a drunk chase a balloon near the edge of a cliff.” 

If the green was where his ball landed, that would’ve been a great shot.” 

[Jim Furyk’s swing] “Looks like a one armed man trying to wrestle a snake in a phone booth.” 

[On Tiger Woods]  “I just stood there watching him walk past and thinking – ‘I don’t know what it is but I know there weren’t two of them on Noah’s Ark.'”   And there are so many more. . . .

In 2010, Feherty became a naturalized American citizen.  He lives with his family in Dallas.  And continues with the memorable one-liners. . . .  

Stay Out of Highwood

Shortly after the movie Ghostbusters was released (1984), Donna, Lauren (age 8) and I were on a flight from LaGuardia to Chicago. We were sitting in my least favorite spot — the bulkhead (no leg room).  So we take off and we’re flying along when Donna announced that she was going to the bathroom.  Since we were sitting at the opposite end of the coach section bathrooms, the flight attendant said Donna could go up to first class.  

When she returned, she sat down and said “You will not believe who is sitting right in front of us!”  “Bill Murray!”   Now Lauren was keenly aware of Ghostbusters and she immediately had to go to the bathroom.  And she whisked through the curtains.  I could see her standing in the aisle – staring at the person directly in front of us (presumably Mr. Murray).  She giggled – went to the bathroom – and returned.  “He made a funny face at me!” she exclaimed.  Soon thereafter, she had to go to the bathroom again.  And again.  And again. . . . . 

After we landed and pulled into the gate, I asked if Lauren wanted his autograph.  Embarrassed, she said “no.”  We walked through the terminal toward baggage claim – with Bill Murray (now wearing a large floppy hat) a few feet ahead.  As we got to baggage claim, I told Lauren this was the last chance.  “Do you want his autograph?”  And she said “Yes.  But you go first.”  So I approached Mr. Murray – Lauren behind me – peeking out.  “Hello, Mr. Murray.  We are from Wilmette [where he grew up] and we are fans of your new movie.  May we bother you for an autograph?”  Bill Murray looked at Lauren behind me – grabbed her and picked her up and gave her a gentle shake “whatsa matter?  Can’t you talk?”   And Lauren melted.  

He signed a large card “To Lauren – Stay out of Highwood” [the place in our area known for taverns].  So far, she has.  I think. . . . .