Fly the W, Always

There’s an old joke that asks, “Why are Cubs fans the best fans to date?”

Because they never expect a ring.

Ouch.  As painful as it is to admit here in Chicago, it has been a long, long time since the Cubbies last brought home a World Series victory.  107 years, to be exact.  That means the sun has risen more than 39,000 times since the Boys in Blue last popped the champagne.  Eighteen different Presidents have sat in the Oval Office.  Haley’s Comet has come and gone.  Twice.

Ask your average Illinois resident, and you’ll get a colorful assortment of catalysts for this century-long drought, a feat unmatched in modern professional sports.  Some choose to blame farm animals.   Others cursed a 26-year old human resources worker from the Northern suburbs. 

But the fact of the matter is, after watching their team play more than 16,000 games since it’s last championship, the North Side’s long-suffering fan base has every reason to be jaded.  They are well within their right to greet each new Opening Day with a collective ‘Meh’.    Double digit decades’ worth of disappointment take their toll, and in this day of inherent skepticism and faux outrage, it’s a wonder even the most ardent fan doesn’t give up on the game altogether.

But a funny thing happens on the way to 1060 West Addison.  This city, built on a foundation of integrity, hard work, and sense of community, refuses to give up on their so-called “Loveable Losers.”  Fans continue to pack the seats of historic Wrigley Field, game after game, season after season.  They do so – not with a fool’s hope – but with a genuine sense of pride in their team, its venue, and their fellow fanatic brotherhood.  It is an attitude that permeates not only the city’s love of sport, but it’s outlook toward daily life.  From its sense of family to its entrepreneurial fire, Chicago simply never gives up on anything it considers its own.

That’s a testament to the spirit of this great city and those who populate it, be they born and bred Chicagoans, or transplants looking for a place to finally settle in and call home.  Hopefully, on a clear fall day in 2016, the city will be rewarded for its loyalty (and its patience) with a chance to revel in the glory of its favorite sons.


A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD

We all start somewhere. 

At d’aprile properties, we pride ourselves on being the go-to experts for real estate throughout Great Lakes region, with roots stretching across the entire Midwest.  But our foundation lies among the myriad of individual neighborhoods that make up the great city of Chicago. 

We began with a small office in the West Loop, and no matter how far across the country we look to expand, our work ethic was born and bred right here in the city.  Our personality and culture draw strength from the harmony between Chicago’s diverse districts, allowing us a unique insight into the broad spectrum of our clients’ wants and needs.

That is why we at d’aprile are proud to announce the opening of our new city office location, right in the heart of Lakeview!  Sitting a few doors down from where Lincoln, Greenview, and Barry all come together, our new branch provides a more localized vantage point for our agents to better serve their Northside clients. 

From booming Lincoln Avenue, across to North Halstead, and on through to the Lakeshore – the individual pieces of Lakeview come together to form a detailed portrait of city life.  While serving as a gateway to all the charm that Chicago has to offer, Lakeview still retains its proud, close-knit neighborhood feel.

Drawn in by the beautiful stretch of shoreline along its eastern border, residents are able to take advantage of highly regarded public and private school systems, as well as ample commuter lines providing access to the entire city, and beyond.  Finding a fulfilling work/life balance is made easy, as the community takes pride in serving the beating heart of diversity, art, and culture in the area. 

Whatever brings you to Lakeview – a desire to visit historical Wrigley Field or the bustling shops and restaurants of the Southport Corridor – be sure and stop by d’aprile properties to say hello.  We’re so proud to call this amazing community our home!


Something Wicked This Way Comes…

Photo Courtesy of cubshq.com

It has been an October unlike any other for Northside Chicago baseball fans – at least, those under the age of 108.  In 2016, our beloved Cubbies have flipped a century-old switch, and brought this city wildly to their feet time and again since Opening Day.  Gone are the Lovable Losers of decades past.  Here to (hopefully) stay are Madden’s Marauders, restoring the faith of an entire fan base, and striking a blow for cursed sports teams everywhere.

Yeah, it’s easy to see why so many feel the team is cursed.  All because of that #$@&%*! billy goat.  Then there was the black cat in ’69.  Bartman in ’03.  And most recently, Daniel Murphy in ’15 (name of the original cursed goat?  Murphy!).  Time after time, the more talented rosters for our Boys in Blue have been tripped up by what seems like a rather cosmic form of good old-fashioned rotten luck.

Photo Courtesy of Chicago Tribune

But what if it’s not a curse at all?  What if there is something far more nefarious, and dare we say, supernatural at work here?  Could it be that neither the team, the organization, or the players themselves are cursed – but that their home is?  What if Wrigley Field, one of the most beloved, iconic sports venues in the history of everything, is actually…haunted?

DUM DUM DUM!!!!

Sure, go ahead and laugh.  But over the years, countless staff members and visitors alike have reported ghostly sightings, and more than a fair share of macabre moments.  In fact, the tales became so widespread that at one point Cubs ownership eventually hired paranormal researcher/author Ursula Bielski and her team, Chicago Hauntings, Inc., to complete a thorough investigation of the ballpark.  And Mickey Bradley and Dan Gordon, authors of Haunted Baseball and Field of Screams, named Wrigley Field the most haunted ballpark in the country.

So just who are these horribly restless spirits?  Why do they frighten and torment the hallowed hallways of our cherished ‘Friendly Confines’?  Well, actually, you might just recognize a few of them.

Former Cubs Player & Manager, Charlie Grimm

Grimm, who managed the Cubbies during that fateful, goat-ridden season in 1945, is rumored to have had his ashes buried in a box in left-center field.   Numerous security guards have reported hearing ‘ole Charlie’s booming voice calling out their names in an otherwise vacant stadium.  And the janitorial staff may hear the telephone ringing from the player’s empty bullpen in the middle of the night, where rumor has it a ghostly Grimm is still trying to make a pitching change to this day.

Steve Goodman

Don’t recognize the name?  The Chicago born folk singer-songwriter is perhaps best known today for writing “Go, Cubs, Go” – a fan favorite tune that still breaks out in Wrigley’s parking lot after every Cubs win.  After his untimely death from leukemia, Goodman – a lifelong fan and season ticket holder – requested that his ashes be scattered near his seats at Wrigley Field.  He apparently doesn’t like to deal with Lakeview traffic though, as many people have reportedly witnessed his ghostly figure still sitting in the stands behind home plate.

Harry Caray

Photo Courtesy of Indystar.com

Now if that name is unfamiliar to you…then why in the name of Santo are you still reading this?  One of Chicago’s most beloved and recognizable voices, quintessential Cubs broadcaster Caray passed away back in February of 1998.  The rumors of his haunting ways stem from numerous fan reports of unexplained mists in the press box.  Is it his ghostly presence, still trying to call the play-by-play from the afterlife?  Is it the spray of countless Budweisers as he delightfully slurs his way through an endless version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”?  The city may never know.

If you take a minute to think about it, these sporting specters seem far more good-natured than ghastly.  Not since Casper The Friendly have a group of ghouls come off as harmless and cheerful as Wrigley’s resident wraiths.  So maybe they’re not here to haunt, after all.  Maybe they simply represent the ‘never give up’ attitude of Cubs fans themselves, whose entire life (or death) would be forever altered by witnessing their treasured Northsiders pop the champagne.

So this year could bring more than just a championship.  Maybe, just maybe, these incredibly loyal souls can finally leave behind the iconic ivy of Wrigley Field, and rise toward eternal peace on a chilly November evening, with a grateful smile on their face, and a familiar song in their hearts.