Everybody had a great time at my talk and booksigning for my book The Forgotten 1970 Chicago Cubs: Go and Glow at Prime Time Restaurant and Bar in Hickory Hills, IL, on June 21.
The event was arranged by Don Lenza, a sports memorabilia distributor, and featured Chicago Cubs historian and part time tour guide Brian Bernardoni as the interviewer. Brian even brought his 2016 Cubs World Series ring to the event and let attendees try it on.
Brian asked me detailed, provocative questions. He noted that my book talks about Ladies’ Day, and said that he mentions it whenever he gives tours of Wrigley Field. An audience member expressed his shock that there Wrigley Field used to have Ladies’ Days in which women were admitted free, and said that he would love the opportunity to take his wife to more games if the Cubs still had Ladies’ Day
We talked about some of the bad trades that cost the Cubs the pennant in 1970, such as Oscar Gamble for John Callison and Ted Abernathy for Phil Gagliano, and how those were only two in a series of horrible Cub trades in the 1960s and 1970s, including trading batting champion Bill Madlock for fading outfielder Bobby Mercer—a pet peeve of another audience member, Greg Lewandowski.
We talked about Jim Hickman getting the hit to drive in Pete Rose with the winning run in the All-Star Game that year. The replay of Rose barreling into catcher Ray Fosse has been shown on TV thousands of times, yet Hickman’s hit is almost never mentioned.
I’ve had a lot of interviews about my book, but Brian was the only interviewer who delved into the topic of the psychological implications of negativity, which I mention in The Forgotten 1970 Chicago Cubs: Go and Glow. I noted how headlines like “Cubs won’t collapse” and “No Cub slump” subtly and psychologically plant the seed that they would collapse or slump—and they did.
This was also the first interview in which I had some time to talk about the Cubs’ supersub of 1970—Cleo James. He seldom started, but played in 100 games that year. Cleo was the type of player teams need to win the pennant—and he was the favorite player of my wife, Anne, that year.
Journalist Kelly White of The Reporter, a Southwest Regional Publishing newspaper, attended and wrote a great article for the newspaper. See https://www.southwestregionalpublishing.com/2021/06/24/chicago-cubs-author-says-1970-team-was-one-to-remember/?fbclid=IwAR2U6fUl1HLYY05bsarOMYpRNMyqffrqRenHpOZ_8kFc_Cwhhz_RK7fiiQk
It was a great event thanks to Don Lenza, Brian Bernardoni, Anne Nordhaus-Bike, the people who came to the talk, and Prime Time Restaurant.