With the rumors, news, more rumors and finally, confirmation that Rick Renteria is out as Cubs manager, and that the Joe Maddon era is set to begin, I thought it would be fitting to write a tribute song to commemorate the moment.
I actually wrote the chords and melody over three girlfriends and an ex-wife ago, but I've never performed, recorded, or finished writing the song. However, it's a regular in my "screw around on the piano for 20 minutes" repertoire. On this snowy wind-swept Halloween, I found myself replacing the word "Go" with "Joe" as I "screwed around" today, in much the same way Rick Renteria is set to "Go" and Cubs fans everywhere are placing their World Series dreams on a guy named "Joe". The marriage of old song and Cubs news resulted in this video:
But Friday was Halloween. Mischief time. I couldn't resist the urge to acknowledge the loss of another Cubs also-ran, Billy Cub, who will never don the unofficial mascot costume again after being sued by the Cubs.
Billy Cub got into fist fights, annoyingly hustled fans, and strangely kept his tips in an Igloo Cooler. But those aforementioned antics were also incredibly entertaining to me. John Paul Weier, AKA "Billy Cub," was a man with a dream to be the Cubs official mascot. His unfortunate name was a play on the Billy Goat Tavern of "goat curse" fame and a baton police beat you with. I doubt that the Cubs' brass ever considered this begging bear a real mascot candidate, but any market research team would have put the kibosh on any reference to a "cursed weapon" anyway. However, the man, or men (there were three) that were Billy Cub were a Horatio Alger story gone wrong, and there are a lot more of us failures who tried, than dreamers who succeeded.
As annoying as Billy Cub was, he gets a song too...
If Rick Renteria watched the World Series this year, he certainly noticed what could happen to ex-Cubs managers like Dale Sveum -- they go to the World Series. I have no doubt that if Rick doesn't stay with the Cubs in some manner, he will be successful wherever he goes. Meanwhile, Billy Cub, I've got a couch you can crash on