I apologize upfront…I am going to sound a bit like an ogre…or at least an angry old man in this post. This column may also seem irreverent to those of you looking for the usual nuggets of Cubs’ history that I typically write about…but this week I am hopping on a (very sarcastic) soap box.
The Cubs are NOT going to win the World Series in 2015. I hope I am wrong, yet at this moment in “time”…I just don’t see it. This team is light years ahead of the 2011-2014 versions …and extremely fun to watch. The Cubs are an exciting young team with much promise. However they also possess a shaky defense, a very strikeout-y offense, and they are looking up at a Cardinals team that might win 130 games (unless they are all in white-collar cyber-criminal prisons by September). I think the Cubs have a better than average shot of getting in as a wild card… I just can’t see them getting past the Nationals, the Giants, or the Dodgers. The “future” is bright however…yet part of me will actually be relieved when they don’t win in 2015.
Why? Why would a life-long Cubs’ fan say something so blasphemous…I shall explain:
I am a child of the 70’s and 80’s…so I love pop culture of that era. Consequently, I am a fan of the “Back to the Future” films. (Well…at least the first two) I may be one of the rare individuals who favor the second installment in the series. I love the “alternate” Biff Tannen 1985, where Biff is this rich American icon who amassed his empire through gambling…using Grays’ Sports Almanac…a book that has the score of every sporting event ever from 1955-2000! (Yet is remarkably thin) He stole Marty’s idea for wealth and fame…and where did Marty get this idea?
Marty sees a hologram which congratulates the Cubs on winning the 2015 World Series over Miami…and a bystander says “if only you could go back in time and put some money on the Cubbies” and Marty’s scheme is hatched.
Now here in the actual 2015 I am tired of hearing about this silly connection. Apparently some have taken this as some sort of a prophecy (I realize some of it is tongue in cheek) but I have read dozens and dozens of posts, blogs and articles about this. I also constantly hear “the Cubs are gonna win…Back to the Future said so” …comments from friends and co-workers. Enough….please stop…it may have been kind of cute or funny the first 33 times I heard it, but now I find it annoying. So here is my attempt to put this “prophecy” to bed- I will now point out what Back to the Future 2 also predicted about 2015:
-that the Cubs will play Miami in the World Series…yes I know there wasn’t a Miami franchise at the time, so the film did predict that correctly…but guessing that Miami would eventually have a baseball team does not qualify one as Nostradamus.
-Flying Cars?!….boy they were way off on this one…not only do we not have flying cars in 2015, we basically have the same cars we had in 1985. Sure the designs are sleeker, mini-vans replaced station wagons, and we get about .1 more miles to the gallon…but no flying ability. Rich people and the Military (they always get stuff 20 years before us) don’t even have flying cars in the real 2015…yet Doc Brown was stuck in bad aerial traffic in Back to the Future 2.
-Hydrating a Pizza? The McFly family hydrates a Pizza in seconds for dinner in their hydrating machine that looks suspiciously like a microwave. The movie did correctly predict that Pizza Hut would still be in existence in 2015. (I am guessing that a hydrated version would taste better than actual 2015 Pizza Hut does.)
-Marty’s Nikes…they were kind of close on this one…there have been advances in footwear in the last 30 years that have lessened the need for shoelaces. Frankly, I am surprised that shoelaces have made it this long…I can only attribute it to the historically strong aglet** lobby.
-the prevalence of Fax machines…I really can’t help but to burst out laughing at this one! A joke in the film has Marty’s boss say “Read My Fax!”…and it’s even on that old time computer spool paper! This might have worked had they traveled to 1995…but not 2015.
-Hover Boards…I actually did see an episode of Pawn Stars where they purchased one of these…so they get some credit here…but what I watched Chum Lee try to navigate was not anywhere near what Marty was flying around on.
-A “Café 80’s”…I want one of these in my town now! I would frequent the place all of the time…in many ways I am stuck in the decade anyway….however I would want Pac Man, Tempest and Donkey Kong video games and not the lame, plot-foreshadowing, made-up “Wild Gunman” game that Marty plays.
- 2 ties as a fashion for men-I don’t fault them for this miscalculation…I still think it’s a very funny concept.
-Clothes that dry themselves-I do think I saw an infomercial about some kind of jacket that did this (maybe I was dreaming?)…just not to the extent that Marty’s clothes do.
-Using your hand-print to open the door-I am pretty sure this technology exists (I bet the military has it)…it’s just not readily available in all 2015 homes like say…fax machines! (giggle, giggle)
Even if the Chicago Cubs do happen to win the 2015 World Series(doubtful)…it will have nothing to do with BTF2 predicting it. Like most conspiracies, prophecies, and oddities…my guess is there is a perfectly logical explanation for the Cubs’ inclusion in the 1989 film. Let me ask you this-what other team could the filmmakers have used that would have gotten more of a reaction/laugh than the Cubs? Maybe the Red Sox because they were also still stuck in their own historical streak at the time…but they are not seen as “losers” as much as our beloved team is. The White Sox could have been used as well…but no one cares about the White Sox. I can’t think of any team that would have gotten the same reaction…it was a good choice by the filmmakers. It’s just not as sexy of an explanation as if they were really predicting this…sorry.
So back in our real 2015 where the Cubs are an improved bunch, cars don’t fly, and my lack of scientific knowledge prevents me from knowing if “hydrating” is even a thing, let’s put to bed the whole Cubs/Back to the Future connection. If by some miracle the Cubs do win their first title in 107 years it will be just a fun, silly coincidence…and if they do win…the Hover Boards are on me!
** an aglet is that little plastic tip at the end of your shoelace…which has a lifespan of about a month after the purchase your shoes.