5 Things You Can Learn from the World Series Champs

Spoiler alert: I'm about to help you learn some things, courtesy of my friends, The 2016 World Series Champions.
Joe Maddon says "Try Not To Suck"
(Photo Credit: Nuccio DiNuzzo / Chicago Tribune)

Before you assume that this is just a long gushy post filled with overly excited exclamations of how great the Cubs are, take a minute to think about what I’m offering. A Cubs fan since birth, I know this team pretty well. (My puppy, Wrigley, would back me up on that.) Over the course of my lifetime, the boys in blue from Chicago have taught me one or two things. Sports do that, don’t they? Teach us shit we don’t even know we’re learning. Spoiler alert: I’m about to help you learn some things, courtesy of my friends, The 2016 World Series Champions.

The best things in life are worth waiting for.

You know what happened the last time the Cubs won the World Series? Let’s take a trip back to the year that was 1908. We had a ball dropping in Times Square for the very first time. Republican William Howard Taft defeated some other guy who we don’t care about to become President of the United States. Converse was founded in Massachusetts. A brand new car, the Ford Model T, was launched… Costing you a whopping $850. The first vacuum cleaner is invented.

Party Like It's 1908 Tee

(Hey Cubs fans, snag this tee here.)

Life in 1908 was grand. The Chicago Cubs had just won, not one, but two World Series championships. They had no idea what was waiting for them: 108 years of waiting, pain, and heartbreak. The fans who were alive to witness their wins? They would never see their Chicago Cubs win a World Series again.

Sometimes, it’s hard. Sometimes, we demand instant gratification. In a world of two-day shipping, we find ourselves annoyed at having to wait any more than 48 hours for whatever it is that we want. But the good news? The best things in life are worth waiting for. So next time your wait in the Taco Bell drive thru lasts more than two minutes, tell yourself that it’ll all be okay once you your hands on get that Crunch Wrap Supreme.

It’s really not that hard to be awesome.

There’s a running joke in the Cubs fan base this year. You’ve probably seen the t-shirts, and if you haven’t, there’s one literally at the top of this page to look at. “Try Not to Suck” became the Cubs’ mantra from the beginning of the season. Manager Joe Maddon was filled with awesome bits of advice for the team. When the time came to play ball, what did the team do? They literally tried not to suck. In the past, they’d done okay, but as soon as they got to big games, they sucked. This year? Nope, not good enough. Joe Maddon challenged them not to suck, and they did just that. They didn’t suck.

Participation trophies are for chumps.

We all should already know this, but some part of us longs to be recognized for the minimal effort we put in just by showing up. The problem with this is that, in the world of things that matters, participation trophies are not a thing. Your boss isn’t about to get you a plaque for making it to work on time (or less than half an hour late) every day. Your mom is the only person who is proud of you for managing to make your shoes match your outfit. The real winners in this world get the biggest, shiniest trophies.

Tom Ricketts

(AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Money does matter, folks.

In the picture above, that guy hoisting the trophy? Yeah, he doesn’t play for the Chicago Cubs. He owns them. No, it’s not Ted Cruz, or the Zodiac Killer… (Although that might make an interesting twist to the next election cycle if he turns out to have a connection there.) That’s Tom Ricketts. Ricketts grew up as the son of the guy who started Ameritrade, and daddy always said the kids couldn’t join his company until they turned 30. So Tom went off to college at U of Chicago, found himself living in Wrigleyville after a while, and fell in love with this little place called Wrigley Field. He even met his wife in the bleachers next to the ballpark.

Tom and his siblings all went to Daddy and asked him to pony up. The family purchased a 95% stake in the Chicago Cubs, and that was in 2009. Any Cubs fan knows the rest is history, but for those of you who are new… Ricketts brought in Theo Epstein in 2011, a guy who knows plenty about breaking curses. The moral of this story is that money matters, and if you’re spending yours on bad beer and soggy french fries, you’re making bad choices.

You’re nothing without your friends.

There’s some quote that floats around most motivational speaking circles that says you’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with. I already told you about the bromance that is Bryzzo and the manager at the helm, but there’s a few other members of this team that you probably need to hear about. I could go on and on about them all, but I’ll keep it short. (TeeTime doesn’t need a reason to tell me I rambled too much about the Cubs, even though I have 108 years of history to make up for.)

Grandpa Rossy, a.k.a. David Ross, served as the veteran catcher who was behind the plate for Jon Lester this season. Ross announced at the beginning of the year that he was retiring this season, and the boys rallied behind him to celebrate the “Year Long Retirement Party” with as many wins as possible. (PS – In Game 7, David Ross homered, something catchers don’t do that often. Total Badass Move.) David Ross was the adult best friend who makes sure you’re not making a total fool of yourself when you go out, and we all need him in our lives. Find the good people around you and hang on to them, they’re going to help you become the greatest version of you possible.

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