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I don’t know how things work in other cities, but in Chicago baseball fandom exists in a rather odd state. Other than the relatively hard geographic boundaries separating the two teams – the North Side for the Cubs and the South Side for the White Sox, with Madison Street serving as the metaphorical 38th parallel – years of study have brought me to another curious conclusion: there are not two distinct groups of fans, but rather four:

  1. Unaffiliated/Fair-weather fan – People that have not declared an allegiance toward either team and instead jump on the bandwagon of the one that is doing the best (which in Chicago is usually the one fighting towards .500). Naturally you’re going to have these kinds of people in any city, and nobody likes them.

  2. Wrigley Field fan – These people do not care for the fortunes of the Chicago Cubs team, but are instead more interested in the experience of Wrigley Field and the surrounding bars, and the cachet that comes with identifying yourself as a Cub fan. Usually white and in their 20s, these people will inevitably be found sitting in the bleachers half-drunk and talking loudly on their cell phones. After the game they will retire to the Cubby Bear or Murphy’s Bleachers in order to drink some more. These people will go to games merely to soak up the party atmosphere and hit on the opposite sex. Baseball game? What baseball game?

  3. Cubs Fan – A follower and devotee of the Chicago Cubs baseball team. Despite the organization’s storied history of losing and ineptitude, can still be found every April espousing optimism at the team's chances, and if they suck then just wait 'till next year! Truly a sad specimen of humanity that deserves to be pitied. Although the North Side of Chicago is where the Cubs make their home, Cub fans can be found throughout the entire Midwest thanks to the wide-ranging reach of WGN television and radio.

  4. Cubs Hater / Form Sox Fans – These people hate the Chicago Cubs and their fans with every fiber of their being. To them, every Cubs fan is either a gullible fool trapped in an abusive relationship, or a soulless yuppie who cares nothing for baseball and only attends the game because it is the popular thing to do. Every setback suffered by the Cubs is met with equal parts glee and scorn. Now one would think that these people would be followers of the city's other baseball team the White Sox, however this is not the case. Despite the stereotype that South Siders are simpler, blue-collar type people, many of them are also devotees of the philosophies of Plato, especially that of the World of Forms. These people are not fans of any White Sox baseball team that has ever actually existed, instead they are believers in the idea of the Form Sox: A perfect Sox team that existed somewhere at sometime. Any real Sox team is merely a pale recreation of the Form Sox. So in between invectives hurled at the boys in blue up north, you will also hear lamentations on how Frank Thomas is a crybaby, the upper deck at Comiskey Park is too steep, and how every team owner from Jerry Reinsdorf to Bill Veeck to Charles Comiskey has been a cheapskate that refused to help the team win.

So we here in the Windy City live a strange existence: The Cubs fans hate the Wrigley Field fans for turning their stadium into an open-air frat house and presenting an easy target for the Cubs Haters to mock. The Cub Hater/Form Sox people hate everyone, even their own team. And the Wrigley Field fans are too drunk to notice. No wonder we haven't had a World Series Champion since 1917.

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