When you're a Cub fan, strange things happen to you. Bipolar things. Like, you start believing that anything can happen. That "anything" could be a World Series championship. Or it could be total devastation. And even thought it's always total devastation, you still believe it could be anything. The loftiest hope and the most stubborn doubt can be mere moments removed from each other.
At the beginning of every season, I temper my expectations by swearing off any hopes that the Cubs can win this year. I then imagine what my reaction will be when they do win it all. And I do it every game. Cubs down by 5 runs with two outs in the ninth? I doubt with certainty that they'll win. Three walks later, I'm convinced with all the hope I can handle that they'll win. Then they lose, and I'm not quite sure what to do with myself. I am at once assured that doubt is the way to go as my hope longs for another bay of optimism in which it can drop anchor and eagerly float.
Cubs winning? I envision every possible losing scenario. If they win, I'm elated. Never doubted it for a second. If they lose, I knew it was coming. Hope and doubt happily coexist in my brain, heart, soul, and left foot.
But this isn't baseball. This is life. I quit my job, and now I'm relying on God to provide opportunities, sustain my skills, and overcome my tragic weaknesses consistently enough to put food on the table . . . and keep said table in a house upon which foreclosure does not fall. And I have all the confident hope in the world that this is going to go great. But doubt still likes to play on my swingset.
It's kind of amazing. Pretty much every time I sit down to write something, I doubt that I can do it. And I've written a lot of stuff. Yet, I also have this strange feeling that it might turn out pretty good. There's no in-between feeling at all. I doubt myself. I believe in myself. It's the same kind of rush I get from watching the Cubs. When things go well, I am all adrenaline. When they go bad, I'm not at all surprised. I'm devastated. I'm sure there's a reason. I'm hopeful for next time.
I say all this, because so far . . . everything's going great. Really. It's all good. As a Cub fan, I know better than to believe it will stay this way. And despite whatever this rambling might indicate, I'm actually giddy. I gid. But it feels weird. At least the Cubs keep losing. If I forget to doubt, I don't know what that'll do to me.
Paddock vs. Petty: If You Had to Pick One - I’ll declare at the outset that what I’m about to propose is a false dichotomy. This world is not divided into Tom Pettys and Stephen Paddocks. But I’m goi...
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