Yesterday, The Full Story

After Saturday’s epic win over the White Sox, it seemed apparent that the Cubs were ready to turn this season around and go for the glory. Alas, the winds of change came roaring over the lake by Sunday and the beautiful 80-degree weather of the previous day had turned for the worst. I bundled up in three layers, thinking I was over-doing it, and headed out to Wrigley for my first game of the season. Future brother-in-law Captain W was meeting me at “that shitty little bar right off the Red Line” so I looked around and walked into The Dugout, the only shitty bar I could see underneath the train.

I sat and drank a dollar draft and ate peanuts as the frat boys high-fived each other and the girls hiked their thongs up and out of their jeans. Not so attractive, really. This bar sucked. I finished my beer and walked outside to wait for the Captain, and he finally appeared as the first inning was half over. In we went, climbing to the upper deck and sitting down, overlooking right field. I quickly found out that I wasn’t over-doing it all; it was really cold and I put my hoody up. The skies were grey and dreary but the Cubs scored one early and things were looking good. Until the second inning, where the Sox took a 2-1 lead and held on to it.

Let’s just cut to it: two outs in the seventh and suddenly the Sox explode for seven runs, boom, and the game is all but over. It happened so quick I don’t even remember it. Tim Robbins appeared to sing the seventh-inning stretch and after that we were outta there. We watched the rest of the game at some bar on Clark Street that had free tacos as the rains came and went. Final score: 10-6 Sox, and the sweep was not to be. Zambrano still looks haunted by the ghost of Mark Prior and can’t seem to remember how to pitch. D. Lee could not pull off the heroics two days in a row. The bullpen still sucks. Dempster is going to be a starter?

Oh, and I won’t even begin to comment on the creeping commercialism at Wrigley, the ads on the rain tarps, the dugouts, the outfield walls… The horror, the horror…!

I came home for a brief interlude and a couple more beers and then we were off to the Chicago Theater for the Arcade Fire show. Our seats were pretty good up in the balcony and we were all happy to see Electrelane open up (they’re a good band that also play at the Empty Bottle on Tuesday). I had heard that the Arcade Fire would walk out through the doors and down the aisle to the stage but it never happened, they just appeared as the lights went down and we were off. Opening song: “Wake Up.” Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh!

The new stuff off of Neon Bible is apparently pretty heavy against organized religion, which is right up my alley, but I still found the Funeral songs to be better, both live and on record. Whatever, it was still a pretty awesome show, and the sound was loud and good. Unfortunately, the past two times I’ve seen Arcade Fire (at the Riv and Lollapalooza) were so great that it’s going to be hard to ever top those. That Lolla show was especially amazing. But let’s just say that it was another great show by a band that has set the bar high.

After the second encore the lights went up and it was over. My weekend began to catch up with me, which also included a wedding on Saturday and a rock show last Thursday that started it all. Happy Birthday to Pete Townshend and my friends Bob and Scott, and the rest of the world, here comes another week…


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