Last time I came to Chicago it was the middle of winter, so my excursions to Wrigleyville have thus far been limited to checking out the nightlife. There are some pretty cool bars in the area (all having great live music), but you really haven’t been to Chicago until you’ve seen the Cubs play at home.
Today they were playing the St Louis Cardinals. It was my first ballgame and I have to admit I was really impressed. I’d never really thought much of it, but baseball is actually a great game to watch – all the tension and drama of a one-dayer, but with fewer delays and a crowd full of eye-candy (locals tell me that Wrigley Field is regarded as America’s biggest singles bar). And they bring beer to your seat. And hotdogs. All you want.
Today’s game was a real nail biter. The cubs drew level on the last pitch of the 9th innings, forcing a 10th. Then with no outs in the 10th the Cardinals sent three runners in with a MASSIVE home-run, which the Cubs were unable to beat. Result: 12-9 to the Cardinals (but surely baseball was the winner of the day?).
Oh, a couple of tidbits I picked up today:
- When you’re approaching any event (ballgame, concert etc) in the US, people will ask if they can buy your tickets. These guys are scalpers, and ‘Can I buy your tickets’ is code for ‘Do you want to buy tickets’.
- When a home run gets hit into the stand, tradition is that whoever catches the ball can keep it… unless it’s the visiting team scoring. If the visiting team scores a homer the ball gets tossed back into the infield in disgust. In the second innings today the Cardinals shot one right out of the park onto Addison St. About 20 seconds later the ball came flying back over the wall. Piss funny.
- When attending a ballgame at Wrigley Field, either wear a Cubs shirt, or a shirt containing NONE of the visiting team’s colours. By pure coincidence Dave and I both ended up wearing red (Cardinals colour) shirts today, and it was touch and go till one of the beer swilling dickheads in front of us noticed that Dave was sporting a Cubs cap.
- American guys, for the most part, are tossers. (Ok, we knew that already)
You know the drill – click on the image to see additional pics.