91 and Waiting for a Cubs Championship: Resilience, Hope, and a Passing of the Torch
“I wasn’t a Cubs fan until I met your mom." My father burps and continues, “Her dad would say let’s go and next thing you know we’d be right down on the field shaking PK Wrigley’s hand!” These are the bits and pieces we hear whenever my grandfather's name is spoken.
Other lines are even more telling, such as:
“Your Mom’s dad was a better father to me than my own.”
And, less telling but funny:
“He could do more with that damn stump than most could do with two hands.”
This man is Jim Dickerson. He worked in a lumber yard and along with making a clean cut on some two-by-fours managed to do the same to his left arm — leaving a rounded stump below the elbow that never slowed him down until his heart stopped at age 49, passing quietly in his sleep during a midday nap.
Like many men of his era, Jim Dickerson worked hard. He loved his family, his three daughters, baseball, and the Cubs — but never saw a championship.
And along with a talent for coaching and hitting one-handed infield grounders, Jim Dickerson was an unofficial small-town scout for none other than the Chicago Cubs! He scouted teams that dotted mostly northern Illinois and Iowa. This adds credibility to how my own father was walked onto the field many moons ago to shake a famous owner's hand, sit in first class seats, and watch the Cubs for free! No doubt they paid for the beers — but that’s not the point ...
The point is that one fan now lives on through his family stories; the other lives to toast the Cubs fan he admired most. And of course, the point is also to add a nice story to motivate just one more:
GO CUBS, GO!!!!!!!!!!!!