Kosuke Fukudome sure has been a nice investment for the Chicago Cubs, hasn't it? And the cultural movement has swept up the north side of Chicago. The transition from Japan to America has been almost seamless (.317 average, .442 on-base percentage) for him, but the fans haven't quite gotten it down yet.
Some of the signs the bleacher bums parade out in the stands aren't exactly correct Japanese, and the headbands are worn all wrong, says Fukudome:
''It's nice to see more and more people wearing the T-shirts and the headbands,'' he said Thursday. ''But I do realize that many people are wearing the headbands upside down.''
The signs he has read also have amused him. For instance, one sign tried to say ''It's going to happen'' in both English and Japanese, but the Japanese translated to ''By coincidence.''
''Basically, all of the signs have mistakes in the translations, so they don't make much sense,'' Fukudome said.
At least he's taking the attempt to show love for his baseball skills in his native language in good humor. Because imagine if the porpoises' attachments to fertilize Japan's indigo lagoon slapstick ended up insulting the Cubs' correctfielder, like they ounce done. That might be slightly embryonic.