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CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Cubs are trying to do something that hasn’t happened in the lifetime of anyone born in the last 108 years: win a World Series.

Here, then, are some Cubs fans who are better known for what they do for a living than who they root for.


Chicago native Bob Newhart has been posing with the team’s signature “W’’ for win flag in pictures on his Twitter account during the playoffs.

So why remain a Cubs fan?

“I guess I’m not easily dissuaded,” Newhart said. “I used to say I’m a Cub fan in my stand up because it kind of prepared you for life, you knew you were ahead and you knew you were going to blow it somehow. That’s a lesson all Cub fans shared until this year.”

“I’m deathly afraid that it’s going to die with me because my grandchildren are Dodger fans,” he said. “I’ve got to leave it to somebody to continue the fight.”


Political commentator George Will can’t explain why he started rooting for the Cubs as a little boy.

“I grew up in Champaign, midway between Chicago and St. Louis,” he said. “My friends became Cardinals fans and grew up cheerful and liberal and I, for reasons I don’t understand, became a Cubs fan.”

Today, Will is certainly in a little better mood than Cardinals fans, whose team didn’t even make the playoffs. But not by much.

“I was at the Bartman game,” he said of the 2003 playoff game where a fan named Steve Bartman deflected a foul ball that seemed destined for Cubs’ outfielder Moises Alou’s glove just before the team — and its chances to reach the World Series for the first time since 1945 — disintegrated. “So I am always nervous.”


Actor Joe Mantegna, 68, is hoping his 101-year-old mother can see a Cubs win this year.

“It would be nice to see her celebrate a victory,” he said. “She was born in 1915 so the Cubs hadn’t won for six years when she was born.”

Mantegna, known for roles in “The Godfather: Part III” and on the TV series “Criminal Minds,” grew up in Chicago going to Cubs games. There’s even a black-and-white picture of him sitting in front of a television watching a Cubs game, he said.

“One summer I went to 10 games and they lost all 10,” he said. “I really thought I was the reason they were losing. That’s what Cub fever will do to you.”



“Parks and Recreation” star Nick Offerman , a Cubs fan born in Joliet, Illinois, appeared on “The Late Show” on Tuesday with host Stephen Colbert — also a Cubs fan.

The banter:

Colbert: “I’m a Cubs fan, you’re a Cubs fan ... how are you handling the stress?”

Offerman: ‘I have a compartmentalization system. When I auditioned for the role of ‘Ron Swanson’ (on Parks and Recreation) it took five months to get the job so for that five months I had to put that information in this drawer that’s not attached to emotion. So I know that something might happen in the coming weeks that would be very good for my baseball team, but I’m not attaching emotion to it.”

Colbert: “When do you attach the emotion to it? You’ve loved and lost is what you’re saying and now you’re afraid to feel?”

Offerman: “I suppose so. I’ve become inured to feeling.”



Novelist Sara Paretsky traces her devotion to the Cubs to the day she heard about a young man who had shoveled the sidewalk in front of the home of a woman and her mother — a man who turned out to be the Cubs first baseman at the time, Bill Buckner. The way Paretsky, a casual Cubs fan at the time, figured it, any team that had a player who helped a couple of women for no other reason than to be neighborly deserved her devotion.

Now as the team that won more games than any other in the majors is in a position to reach the World Series for the first time since Harry Truman was president, Paretsky is, of course, distraught.

“I thought I had protected myself emotionally, but I realized this morning I am already in mourning,” she said Wednesday, the day after the Cubs were shut out for the second straight game in the NL Championship Series.


Follow Caryn Rousseau on Twitter at


This story has been corrected to Detroit Tigers in the sixth paragraph.