Cubs fans are going to be excited to find out one very important thing. Being a fan of a championship team can be expensive. Very expensive.
If there’s one thing retailers can do very well is spot a sucker a mile away. And with the Cubs finally winning a World Series after 108 years, retailers are going to see a lot of suckers.
They certainly saw them after the Sox broke their championship drought in 2004. I know because I was one of them. I wanted to buy anything I could get my hands on that celebrated the championship. After all, I’ve written about how collecting championship items can be one of the most exciting subsets of Red Sox collecting. But, I knew I had my limits. I also knew that I didn’t want to miss something that would only be available for a limited time, and then regret not getting it. So I asked some advice.
I went to a Yankees fan I knew, and asked what he’d do. What item did he have from the 1996 Yankees championship that he’s really glad he had? Or which item had he realized in the decade since that he really missed?
He instantly came up with two suggestions. A picture of the pig pile celebration, and a hat with the World Series patch.
I liked those ideas. If you want to capture the pure joy that comes with winning the World Series, the celebratory pig pile is certainly one of the best ways to go. I grabbed one of those, and it’s featured prominently in Section 36 world headquarters. Every time I look at it, I’m transported to that moment, and remember how it all went down. Of course, I suppose it doesn’t have to be the full pig pile. A picture of Keith Foulke’s look of complete disbelief after making the out would be a good one. For this year, I’ve seen some pretty good shots of Rizzo extending his arms in celebration after making the final out. Those would make for good choices as well. Whatever best captures the pure emotion.
The hat was a nice idea too. If you wear a hat every day, every time you put the hat on you remember the accomplishment. (I prefer the game hat as opposed to the locker room hats, since most of those are hideous.) So those were great suggestions.
Would I add any? Of course.
Sure, there are the crazy ones. A team signed baseball would be cool. But, for more realistic options.
I love newspapers and magazines. In 2004 I made sure to get a copy of the local paper the next day. And the Boston Globe. And the Boston Herald. And the newspaper from the next town over. I asked friends and relatives in other states to send me their local paper as well. I love the way a newspaper captures the events of the day, as they were felt at the time. It’s raw and uncensored. The best part, they’re relatively cheap. A dollar or two. The bad part? Cubs fans need to hurry. They’ll be in recycling bins tomorrow.
Magazines do the same thing. I’m guessing the Cubs will find themselves on the cover of quite a few in the coming weeks. Again, stories about the championship as it happens. Every detail preserved. They’re so much fun to look back on.
I also like the soda cans/bottles that often come out after championships. And I definitely grab any baseball card sets that come out.
Beyond that, I try and just see what comes around. Those are my staples though. I’d hate to miss out on those. Cubs fans shouldn’t either.
What’s your go-to championship collectable?