General

Wisch Lists are for New Year’s

This weekend’s column from The Daily Journal (Kankakee, Ill.) and The Times (Ottawa, Ill.) …

Wisch Lists are for New Year’s

The WISCH LIST

Jan. 1, 2011

Wish Lists are for Christmas. But Wisch Lists?

Well, they’re for New Year’s.

And while you’re busy ringing in this one – I hope it’s a happy one, by the way – I wanted to share my New Year’s Wisch List as we dive headlong into … well, the 100th anniversary of 1911.

That was a year in which both the first Indianapolis 500 was held and Chevrolet rolled out its first car to compete with Ford’s Model-T. So, with that bit of automotive trivia, let’s start the engine on my Wisch List for 2011 …

I Wisch for another year like 2010, during which I saw the Atlantic Ocean (from New York City), the Pacific Ocean (from San Francisco), the Canadian border (from the absolute middle-of-nowhere in Montana) and, this week, the Gulf of Mexico (from Galveston, Texas). For a travel buff, that’s a grand slam.

I Wisch Ron Santo and Ryne Sandberg were still part of the Cubs organization. I’ll miss you, Ronnie. And, Ryno, I hope to see you again down the road.

I Wisch for a worthy successor to Santo in the WGN Radio broadcast booth. Mark Grace would be my first choice. Keith Moreland actually might be my second.

I Wisch I knew when I got old enough to have a (just turned) 30-year-old younger brother.

I Wisch to never feel my age. No matter how old I get. So far, so good.

I Wisch Rod Blagojevich could serve some of George Ryan’s time.

I Wisch I didn’t think that Blago was just going to just skate again in court this spring. (But I do.)

I Wisch I didn’t think that the White Sox were going to hog most of the meaningful baseball headlines in Chicago this summer. (But I do.)

I Wisch every Chicago Cub was as loyal as Kerry Wood. And while on that subject, I wouldn’t mind it one bit if Wood plunked new St. Louis Cardinal Ryan Theriot in the rump the first time he faces him at Wrigley Field next season.

I Wisch Jay Cutler was more likable. But if the guy keeps winning, I’ll live with it.

I Wisch Soldier Field had a retractable roof. One of the biggest mistakes of Mayor Daley’s two-decade reign in Chicago was the renovation of the Bears’ home. It should have just been rebuilt as a wholly modern stadium with a retractable roof, allowing Chicago to also host college bowl games, Final Fours and Super Bowls. I mean, if Detroit can get those things …

I Wisch the Fighting Illini could roll to a bowl victory every year. But, in 2011, I’ll be happy with finally qualifying for one two years in a row.

I Wisch I found any of Chicago’s mayoral candidates appealing.

I Wisch I thought it really mattered who ends up as the city’s mayor. The Machine likely runs itself at this point, though.

I Wisch the eggheads at the Big Ten offices in Park Ridge had asked for my input before they turned the nation’s oldest athletic conference into a national punchline with the selection of “Legends” and “Leaders” as its new divisional names. It’s not too late to change them, though, fellas. And at this point, just going with “Black” and “Blue” is your smartest bet.

I Wisch I thought the Cubs would surprise this coming season like the Bears did during this current one. (But then I suppose it wouldn’t be a surprise).

I Wisch I wasn’t such a sucker.