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  1. #886

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Don't watch much television Barry. I also don't listen to much WGN radio anymore, since they have almost totally destroyed the station with not rehiring all the great talented announcers that they did have, and rehiring ones with no chemistry or personalities that I care to listen to.

    I didn't even realize that the Harry Caray statue was moved, and in the process damaged. Bad form. I did want to get down and take photos of the new Billy Williams statue. I don't understand the logic of putting it where Harry's statue was and moving Harry to behind the Bleachers. Makes no sense to me. Moving a statue can never be an easy task.

    Bad joke going around is that "perhaps this is the break that the Cubs need".

  2. #887

    • Angel Fan MC Man
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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    It is back to the future day today.

    Not just because those movies are on TV today.

    But because they are playing football games again in Yankee Stadium and Wrigley Field, just like they did in years gone by (admittedly it is a new Yankee Stadium).

    And in Wrigley Field, they aren't using the old configuration they used when the Bears played there.

    In order to charge more money for the best seats (as near as I can figure it), the field will have one end zone, finishing up less than a foot away from the brick outfield wall.

    Because of that, both teams will drive the same way, when they have the ball, all game long.

    Toward the other end zone.

    I'll peek in at the Northwestern-Illinois game before I leave for work, on ESPN "U", just for curiosity sake.
    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

  3. #888

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    I woke up today all ready to celebrate my husband's 64th birthday. However, after turning on my television, I now know that part of my day will be taken up by sadness. Longtime Cub's ballplayer Ron Santo passed away last night in Arizona. Ron Santo had bladder cancer and it was that battle that took his life.

    As many people know Ron Santo played the game with diabetes. I admit to not knowing that until Santo became a broadcaster. Of course many people didn't know that fact, because he didn't advertise it during his career. He just played the game over at third because he loved to play baseball.

    Ron Santo is really loved in Chicago. Loved by Cubs fans, but also loved because of all the work that he had done for Juvenile Diabetes.

    I shall wear my #10 Ron Santo shirt in his honor today. I am sure others in the Cubs community will do the same.

  4. #889

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    My memories of Santo go back to his playing days. Growing up in LA, we hardly ever got to see the Cubs on TV. But I sure remember that 1969 season. I know that wound up to be a big dissappointment for Cubs fans, but I think it was during that season that Santo was first filmed running down the line after a win and kicking his heels.

    That is how I choose to remember Ron Santo.
    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

  5. #890

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Santo often told the story of how he clicked his heels the first time from the sure emotion of a Cubs win. He continued to do so at the suggestion of manager Leo Durocher. I was a brand new Cubs fan back in 1969, and I remember how the Cubs played well that year, and then slowly but surely they were overtaken by the Mets. Santo hated the Mets. He never hid that fact. He wasn't disappointed at all when Shea Stadium was demolished in 2009.

    Santo was almost traded to the Angels in 1973, but since Ron Santo didn't want to leave Chicago, he finished up his career by playing one year with the Chicago White Sox.

    Santo was out of the baseball spotlight for 15 years, before he became a radio broadcaster in 1990. I only more recently began listening to Ron Santo, and Pat Hughes on the radio. They were an awesome duo. Ron's greatest quality was how he moaned in all the right places, and didn't hold back his emotion when the team was on fire and winning. Call him a homer, absolutely. The best kind. He loved the Cubs. Give me an announcer in the booth that loves the team on the field and I'll tune in.

    People loved Santo. It has often been said that the man that was heard on the air is the man that he was. His work for JDRF is probably his greatest accomplishment.

  6. #891

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    I wasn't a Cubs fan back in 1960, when Ron Santo was a Rookie playing for the Chicago Cubs. I was a Sox fan, because that's what my brother was, and my brother is the one that taught me about baseball.

    The 1959 White Sox were a good team. Good enough to get to the World Series, but not good enough to win it. I remember the day they clinched the pennant. I remember how my brother whooped, and hollered with happiness. I remember how he brooded after they loss the series.
    I was just 12 years old when all that happened. At the time I knew all the players and their positions because my brother would quiz me. I better know the answer, or else.....

    I was in 8th grade in 1961 when I attended my first major league Cubs game. It was a school outing. I remember liking Wrigley Field, and yet, not caring about the team on the field. I can honestly say I don't remember much about the game, but I was impressed with the beauty of the ball field.

    Things change. I met my husband, and he was a diehard Cubs fan. We watched a lot of Cubs games. I started caring about the team on the field, and we went to some games at Wrigley Field. We actually lived within walking distance of the ballpark.

    10 years after remembering the craziness of the White Sox clinching the penant, the Cubs were now headed in that same direction. I had a son by this time. He was just two years old. We were all convinced that this was indeed the year for the Cubs. I remember that summer. It started out great. I would go out for an outing with my son. My husband would be watching the game when I left, and I could tell right away when I got home, whether they had won or lost. By the end of the summer, my husband couldn't watch anymore. They went from a team of destiny to a team of disappointment in the span of a few months. It broke my husband's heart.

    He's still a Cubs fan, but he can't bring himself to watch them to this day. He says they make him too nervous.

    My husband watched Ron Santo play the game in the earlier part of his career. He never listened to him on the radio. If he had, I'd have to comment how much they have in common. Ron Santo many times sounded exactly like my husband back in 1969.

  7. #892

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Last Friday I watched Ron Santo's funeral on television. I was very moved by the entire experience. The man was loved by many. I am not Catholic, so I'm not sure what a Catholic funeral is like, but this one was very touching. The funeral procession drove down to Wrigley Field, and the crowd there spontaneously erupted into a singing of "Take Me Out To The Ballgame". The car stopped right on the corner of Addison and Sheffield, which allowed many to pay their own respects to #10.

    I will miss him come opening day.

  8. #893

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Tonight I shall watch from the warmth of my living room, as the Chicago Bears visit the Vikings in a frigid outdoor stadium at the University of Minnesota.

    It will mark 29 years to the day, since the Vikings last played an outdoor home game, since the roof of their Metrodome was ripped open like a sack of flour, or so it appeared, by a recent blizzard.

    The Vikings moved indoors in part to escape the wintry games they once played at old Metropolitan Stadium, which was where the Mall of America is now.

    Having seen the edge the cold gave the Vikings in playoff games against my Rams back in the 70's, I have long wondered why they would want to give up that competitive advantage (of being more used to the weather than some other teams). Plus, I've always disliked domed stadiums in general.

    Unlike other cold-weather NFL stadiums, there are no heating coils underneath the Golden Gophers facility, new as it is. Players yesterday said the surface is as hard as concrete.

    Should be fun to watch. Sitting next to my fireplace.
    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

  9. #894

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    You have a fireplace? How nice is that. I can imagine you trudging through the elements with firewood in hand just like the Walton kids did in the Homecoming.

    I will be watching the Bears game tonite. Hopefully I will stay awake, and hopefully the Bears will do better than last week, which was so embarassing.....

    Good to see my favorite sports fan in the MiceChat neighborhood......

  10. #895

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Just got back from the Alamo Bowl. I forgot how much fun bowl games are. My wife graduated from Arizona, and we live in Dallas, so even though we knew we weren't going to win the game, we went down there. It was worth going just to see the Riverwalk decorated for Christmas. Arizona fans were outnumbered by Oklahoma State fans about 100 to 1, but they were all pretty nice.

    We stayed at Arizona's official hotel and I was surprised to see the players having so much interaction with the alumni. I was riding in the elevator the morning of the game and found myself face to face with the Arizona quarterback Nick Foles, who was very nice. My wife tutored one of the offensive tackles a few years ago and she was able to see him, so it was really nice to talk to them. The game itself wasn't close thanks to Arizona's typical inability to catch the ball and run one of the most predictable offenses in the game, but it was fun.

  11. #896

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Quote Originally Posted by Neon Cactus View Post
    Just got back from the Alamo Bowl. I forgot how much fun bowl games are. My wife graduated from Arizona, and we live in Dallas, so even though we knew we weren't going to win the game, we went down there. It was worth going just to see the Riverwalk decorated for Christmas. Arizona fans were outnumbered by Oklahoma State fans about 100 to 1, but they were all pretty nice.

    We stayed at Arizona's official hotel and I was surprised to see the players having so much interaction with the alumni. I was riding in the elevator the morning of the game and found myself face to face with the Arizona quarterback Nick Foles, who was very nice. My wife tutored one of the offensive tackles a few years ago and she was able to see him, so it was really nice to talk to them. The game itself wasn't close thanks to Arizona's typical inability to catch the ball and run one of the most predictable offenses in the game, but it was fun.
    That's what the bowls are (or at least should be) all about. That kind of experience.

    Since NBC's had a second major sports event in less than a week postponed by weather, I might now take more than a passing glance at the Rose Bowl. My favorite thing about New Year's, with the BCS bowls stretched out, is now the hockey "winter classic". Hockey, now under the lights, Crosby and Ovechkin and Company, outdoors in Pittsburgh tomorrow night.

    Check back with you guys in this thread, next year.
    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

  12. #897

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    I guess it's time to stop neglecting this thread. The Bears won today, and if they defeat the Packers next week, they actually could play in another Super Bowl. I for one would be delighted. Although I was pretty crabby a few weeks ago when couldn't pull off a victory against the Packers. I sure hope they learned something from that loss. One thing is for sure, a Bears/Packers game is always a lot of fun to watch.

  13. #898

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Quote Originally Posted by Barbaraann View Post
    I guess it's time to stop neglecting this thread. The Bears won today, and if they defeat the Packers next week, they actually could play in another Super Bowl. I for one would be delighted. Although I was pretty crabby a few weeks ago when couldn't pull off a victory against the Packers. I sure hope they learned something from that loss. One thing is for sure, a Bears/Packers game is always a lot of fun to watch.
    In a way, it's really amazing that these two teams haven't met in a playoff game since the week after Pear Harbor was attacked. These two teams are the oldest and longest rivals in the history of the NFL, after all.

    But then when one remembers that over the 69-year plus period, both teams had long stretches of mediocrity, with occasional bursts of brilliance like the Packers in the 60s and the Bears in the 80's.

    The Packers have showed me a lot the last couple of weeks. I think that Aaron Rodgers is taking his place among the best quarterbacks in the game. Yes, Cutler played well today, but it was, uh, Seattle. At first glance, I like the Packers to win in Chicago next week.
    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

  14. #899

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Yes, I know Barry. I said two weeks ago, that if the Bears can't beat the Packers then they aren't going to be successful. The didn't beat them two weeks ago, and my husband and I were just discussing whether that was a good or a bad thing.

    If they had won, would that have made them assume that it was an easy road to the big game on February the 6th? Since they lost, does that mean they will prepare better, and perhaps be successful? Or are the Packers just the better team?

    It will be fun. It always is.

  15. #900

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    Re: Stop By, and Say Hi, Sports Fans!

    Quote Originally Posted by Barbaraann View Post
    If they had won, would that have made them assume that it was an easy road to the big game on February the 6th? Since they lost, does that mean they will prepare better, and perhaps be successful? Or are the Packers just the better team?
    Just over a month ago, the Jets lost to New England to the tune of 45-3.

    We all saw what happened last weekend.

    Regular season results mean nothing, apparently, to the outcome of these games in January.

    I don't think the Bears would prepare any differently this week one way or another, nor would Green Bay.

    These teams are very well matched. Both have good defenses, both have decent running games, and I think that Aaron Rodgers is just a little bit better quarterback than Jay Cutler.

    Whether that will be enough for the Packers to go into Soldier Field and take away the George Halas Trophy for winning the NFC on the Bears field, remains to be seen. I do think the Packers are better and I'm picking them, but the Bears certainly wouldn't shock me with a win.
    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

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