The Chicago Cubs gave infamous fan Steve Bartman a 2016 World Series ring. All millennials should rejoice.
No longer shall we be the scourge of ridicule by our elders for indiscretions as a child. We can finally break free from the chains of the participation trophy that have weighed us down from reaching our true potential.
On Monday, the Chicago Cubs announced they had given a 2016 World Series ring to Steve Bartman. You remember him, the fan who (may have) interfered with a foul ball then-outfielder Moises Alou was tracking down for an out in the eighth inning.
The Cubs up three games to two in the 2003 National League Championship Series. Bartman didn’t even catch the ball. Then, sadly, was ostracized immediately, not for missing the ball but for the Cubs choking that series away.
Members of that 2003 Cubs team applauded the decision. Bartman reemerged from whatever witness protection program he’s been in to give a statement thanking the Cubs for a ring he had nothing to do with earning.
Do you hear that?
The echoes of angry old men chastising us for gladly accepting participation trophies in youth sports is vanishing. Millennials get blamed for everything these days. We’re lazy. We’re entitled. We don’t know hard work. Someone had the audacity to write an article for a legitimate outlet that avocado toast was preventing us from purchasing a home.
What Bartman did was overblown. How Bartman was treated was wrong. His conduct as a fan was worse. A true fan knows its one duty is to support the team, not to impede it.
Seven years before Bartman’s fan failure, a 12-year-old interfered in a league championship game and was lauded a hero.
Where’s Jeffrey Maier’s 1996 World Series ring? At least he earned it.
What kind of precedent will this set for fans going forward? Do you know how crazy most fans are? You don’t think someone will see Bartman getting a ring as an opportunity?
Is it out of the realm of possibilities for a fan to jump on the field and tackle his favorite team’s wide receiver going in for a game winning touchdown? What’s to stop a basketball fan from throwing a shoe to deflect a three-pointer? You think players want a ring? Ha! Fans would eat their young to own a ring.
Over the last decade, people of an older persuasion have used the participation trophy to hammer the youth. Yet here we stand with that same older generation giving someone from a different older generation a participation ring for doing it all wrong.
So spare me the lectures and the words of advice about what’s wrong with the youth. It’s all fool’s gold. That same older generation that stands atop its perch yelling down at us has left a very bleak outlook. Congress can’t get its act together. 97% of climate scientists agree on global warning, and the world is a ticking time bomb.
So, pay no mind to me. The next time I’m at breakfast, I’m ordering the avocado toast without checking my 401k to make sure I can still afford a house in the future. You know why? Because I can, and it’s delicious. And you can Get The F-ck Outta Here.