One of the first times that I went to Wrigley Field was on a bus trip with several family members when I was probably 10 or 11 years old.
I remember two things.
It was really cold, and in the 10th inning against the Reds, the Cubs won when celebrated Nasty Boy Rob Dibble hit a Cubbie with the bases loaded to end the game.
I probably remember this game most of all because the Cubs actually won. I haven't kept track through the years, but I am positive that the record is well below .500 when I've been in attendance.
Another time, I went with a friend, Josh, and his family some time in high school.
I remember riding in a convertible. I also remember somebody put in a greatest hits CD of The Doors, and didn't take it out for the round trip.
Folks, you can only here "The End" so many times in one day before you actually wish it was the end.
We also played a lot of 5-card stud (I think that was just a phase I was in). The actual baseball game? I remember sneaking down from the upper deck when it started to drizzle, and I think Terry Mulholland was on the mound against the Braves.
It also rained real hard on the way back, and we had to stop under an overpass.
I also went to the last game of the 2004 season with my future wife, her brother and his wife.
People remember this season as a big failure. Side note being their overall record was better than the 2003 season when they were four outs from the World Series.
There were three or four people walking around the concourse with signs asking if the money was worth it for a team that didn't make the playoffs, and so forth. They were more cleverly stated, but I don't recall the exact wording.
I still don't know what those fans wanted. Was it for the team not to spend money and still lose?
That game is notorious because Sammy Sosa walked out midway through and never played for the Cubs again. Of course, in the stands we didn't know he had left. We just assumed he was removed from the game.
If I thought really hard, I probably could come up with a few more memories, but most of you would be bored pretty quick.
In all of these cases, the ivy was on the walls. Although it seems like it always is brown when I am there. The old scoreboard is being changed by hand – the guy probably holding a stack of zeros for the Cubs' scoreline.
Yes, the field is part of the experience, but it's really not what sticks out in my mind.
I remember when they win – and that they don't do it enough. I remember the people that I am with and experiences that we share.
On Saturday, I'll be heading back to Wrigley with my wife and some friends.
It sounds like it could be wet and cold.
The thought in my head is that if Cubs owner Tom Ricketts does back up his threat of moving the team if his Wrigley updates are not approved by the city council, I hope he considers a retractable roof.
Because I like baseball, and I'd rather watch it in comfort. The memories and all the rest will come with time.