Walking home from the El today, after the spring training game, I was flagged down on the sidewalk by a girl about 7 years old saying, "Hey, you are the White Sox person." I had a WS beanie on and was carrying a WS coffee mug – I couldn’t deny the allegation. Then I recognized the girl from a conversation with a few weeks ago in the local coffee shop, I had the same mug.
The first time I met the girl, I was making small talk with the barista about the merits of Cubs versus WS. The girl walked over to join the conversation by announcing that she thought the WS were better than the Cubs, too; the Cubs don’t play very well. Then she proceeded to comment that she was very sad that the WS didn’t make the play-offs last year but they tried hard. She said she thought the WS would do better this year because she liked Robin Ventura. I was caught off guard by her knowledge and impressed by her confidence to join a conversation with a couple of adults she didn’t know.
This afternoon I told her that the WS won the game today, 9-0. She told me that this game didn’t count because it was spring training, silly grown-up. This time she wanted to talk about the Blackhawks, their record (did I know they haven’t lost any games except in overtime) and that when one of our guys gets hit in the back of the head the other guys take care of business. Mom and the little sister politely waited in the cold while we finished our conversation.
If I see her again, I will ask her name so I can recognize her in 15 years when she is running a sports desk or blog – because she knows her stuff. I have seen the future of WS bloggers, commentators, and journalists; it is good.