It’s good to be back. That might be a presumptuous way to start a post, but I’m optimistic that regular readers have noticed my absence over the past several weeks. It’s been more than a month since my last VFTB post, and I’ve missed it sorely.

However, the weeks off have also offered me a respite from my beloved, infuriating Cubs. Whether I was out of the country or just too swamped with work, I haven’t seen even one Cubs game in the time I’ve been away from the blog. In fact, the only time in the last couple weeks I did manage to turn on the game, I had the privilege of watching two starters go down with injuries minutes apart in the same inning against the Phillies. That carnage made it a lot easier to sit out the ensuing week of games. It’s a good thing I have not been doing any MLB betting at because I wouldn’t have anything to base my decisions on.

The worst part isn’t that I’ve missed so many games; it’s that I haven’t really missed them at all. Don’t get me wrong–I’m still a die-hard Cubs fan. Nothing about my loyalty has changed. But as the veterans were parted off for younger (better?) pieces and the growing pains of the rebuilding process continue, I was happy to be unable to watch.

And perhaps the greatest benefit is that it almost seems like a new season to me. With a crop of new names and faces, a shuffled lineup, and almost a third of the season still to come, it’s reminiscent of the end of Spring Training and the hope that comes with it.

The point is, usually at this time of the year, I’m fully exasperated by the Cubs. By now their hopes for the postseason are long gone, and I’m writing over and over about how the same pitchers are blowing game after game. Instead, I’ve got a virtual fresh start with these Cubs. There’s almost no built up bad blood or resentment. They’ve got a few months to wow me before the season ends and I forget their names and have to spend my time on catching up.

I’m rarely this carefree in the face of another losing season for the Cubs. But this summer, ignorance had been bliss. You might want to try it yourself.

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