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Two teams, one home
posted in: Lifestyle
by Christy McFarland

A house divided

It doesn’t matter the sport or the team. Or even where you live. It can strike anyone, any time, any place. You may call it “a house divided.” 

Cathy Oloffson, a manager at COUNTRY Financial®, calls it life.

Twenty years ago, Cathy – an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan – married Dave despite one major “flaw.” He’s a Chicago Cubs fan. The “divide” doesn’t start and end with her husband. Their two daughters make their household evenly divided as Kayla is a Cardinals fan and Mallory is a Cubs fan.

So what goes on behind closed doors during baseball season? We asked, Cathy answered.

What’s baseball season like at your house?

Cathy: When the Cardinals and the Cubs play each other, we don’t watch together. Instead, Cubs fans are on one floor of our house and Cardinals fans are on another. Our last three Spring Break trips have been to Spring Training games in Arizona and Florida, and we have planned entire vacations around visits to ballparks – both major and minor league.  We also proudly fly a Cubs/Cardinals “house divided” flag.

Did you secretly want both of your kids to grow up Cardinals fans? 

Cathy:  Although we have pictures of the girls throughout the years in both Cubs and Cardinals apparel, we ultimately let the girls choose. When they were young, both girls were Cubs fans because Dave’s entire family roots for Chicago. I bided my time and celebrated somewhat) quietly in 2006 when Kayla became a St. Louis fan after the Cardinals defeated the Tigers in the World Series. Mallory remains a daddy’s girl and loyal Cubs fan.

I also thought it was important to let the girls choose because my Dad never tried to convince me to root for his team, the Cubs. I became a Cardinals fan in the early ‘80s because they were fun to watch and it was fun to root against my Dad. My brother, Mark, did the same. Mark died in 1986 and I vowed to always root for the Cardinals in his honor. My allegiance is one way I keep him alive in my heart always.

Who is the more graceful fan between you and your husband?

Cathy: I’m going to say I am the more gracious fan. I think Dave would agree (begrudgingly). I am a baseball fan first, Cardinals fan second. If the Cubs make it to the World Series (even if they have to beat the Cardinals to do so), it will be good for baseball. And because it’s good for baseball, I would root for them.

What is your advice to “divided households” everywhere?

Cathy: We have dear friends who are also a house divided. At their wedding, Dave gave a toast and shared some wisdom, including the most important piece of advice: In the end, it’s just a game and love conquers all. 

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