The perfect Cubs fan: Michael J. Fox
One of the more satisfying aspects of working for the Chicago Cubs organization is the contact with truly inspring individuals who visit Wrigley Field.
Last week was one of those moments when actor Michael J. Fox visited Wrigley Field. He was in town promoting his new book, “Always Looking Up,” and was filming an ABC special on optimism.
Fox has battled Parkinson’s disease since 1991, and his foundation has funded more $142 million in research.
You have to marvel at those who fight and dedicate their lives to eradicating any disease. Just speaking to him you can’t help but feel inspired.
He is fully intent on finally winning his battle with Parkinson’s. Fox considers himself “an incurable optimist” and envisions the day when that victory will come. For that, he almost seems to be the perfect Cubs fan.
Vine Line: You have been dealing with Parkinson’s disease since 1991. I’m sure it has been a battle. What drives you to be the eternal optimist?
Michael J. Fox: I’ve just been really lucky. I just think that when you run into certain obstacles in life that you have to recognize that they are there, but you need to give yourself lots of room–emotionally and physically–to maneuver and get around it. I have lots of things to look forward to. I enjoy my life, though. I’m write a lot, and I do have four kids that keep
me busy. I do a little acting, too, I was just on “Rescue Me,” a show with my close friend Dennis Leary. So I try to keep busy, but at the same time let myself relax a little bit. I’ll be happy this summer to sit on the beach when it’s warm.
VL: If there’s any one sports fan out there that has to remain eternally optimistic, it is the Cubs fan. Does that make you the perfect Cubs fan?
MJF: Well, that’s the reason why we came to Wrigley Field. We’re doing this special on optimism, and we were thinking about sports and the first thing that came to mind were the Cubbies. The thing about you guys is it’s not like it’s been lousy the entire way. There have been some great teams. You’ve gotten to the playoffs the last two years, won the division. You’re off to a good start this year, 5-2. It’s looking good…See, I’m the eternal optimist–it’s gotta happen sooner or later!
VL: Have you been a baseball fan all your life?
MJF: Actually, I grew up in Canada, so I was much more a hockey fan than anything. When I was a young kid, all we had was the Expos. Then the Blue Jays came along a couple of years later.There was talk of a franchise going to Vancouver, but it never happened.
VL: Is there any particular part of a baseball game that you enjoy?
MJF: I like the fact that you can come during the summer and sit in the park on a warm sunny day and just take it all in. It’s inspiring. You got a hot dog, you’re with your kids and watching these guys play. There’s a nice leisurely pace to it but spurts of total excitement. It’s the perfect game for the perfect optimist–things always seems nice at the park. It’s one of the nicest ways to spend a couple hours of your life.