1. Tuesday, October 15, 2002

    i miss the mexicans on mission street 

    who would celebrate for the 49ers and the Giants. Lord knows they were the only ones who wore the hats and jerseys on a regular basis, and bought the flags and ponchos.

    The Deadheads had Steal Your Face tshirts with the Giants logos, i liked those.

    The old ladies had the satin jackets and big buttons from the olden days. The geeks had the Croix De Candlestick pins in their hats.

    But it was the Mexicans who would show up at Mission and 24th right by my favorite taqueria, El Farolita, and cheer to the traffic and wave and raise their fist. Those are your Giants fans, frisco, those are the ones who’ll be watching the series in bars and in tiny apartments after work. Those will be the ones who will be depressed when the Angels sweep em. Those are the ones who i saw when i worked at the Stick. not you.

    this whole idea of building new ballparks that look like old ballparks isn’t to attract the middle class blue collar worker who buys their kids Giants bibs or Giants baby caps, it’s to get the people in San Jose to drive up the 101 and load up on garlic fries, ten dollar chicken burritos, and plastic cups of chablis.

    there was nothing wrong with candlestick in 97 when the Giants were in first place for most of the season, but there were only two sell outs that year. opening day and one day in september when the dodgers were in town and the gyros were about to clinch it.

    rarely were the yuppies represented in the stands because it just wasnt hip to find yourself at the stick. there were no velvet ropes. there were no ethernet jacks for your palm pilot. there was no buzz on the streets.

    but there was buzz on the streets. in the mission there was plenty of buzz. same buzz as always. it took a while to hit noe valley and the marina but they’re always a little behind the times anyway unless its super new and kitschy and overpriced, like the new ball park that looks like an old one. one where the giants fans will get their hearts broken in in a few weeks.

    the new ballpark is just as windy and cold and soon to be miserable as the stick, but its new and its pretty and it looks great on tv. just like little tears. and expensive jewels.

    candlestick is still orange and green and brown and without much character unless you forget about the fact that ballparks are only backdrops. as gorgeous and heavenly as wrigley field is, it will be known, for me, as the place that Babe Ruth called his home run blast. and candlestick is where montana made all those memories and where steve young ran for my favorite touchdown of all. none of those guys cared about the wind or the fact that the wealthy couldn’t be pampered in luxury boxes.

    let the dogs leap from the yachts in mccovey cove and scrounge the Old Navy splash hits deposited by the likes of anderson, glaus, salmon and kennedy. the angels have tried to turn their park into disneyland too, but the fans always have the last laugh and the fans know they’re in orange county so they all dress alike and they’re all white and they bang their plastic bangers and they buy their monkeys and crack open fortune cookies from panda express that say you will always have this moment so dig it.

    these are two teams that i don’t like very much and two ball parks that can burn for all i care, but i do love the fans and these two teams have fans that have waited a while for this, but the best fans this october, im surprised to say, are those in anaheim, and im happy their team will win.

    sorry, mission street mexicans, propagators of soul in a city at a crossroads. wave your flag as high in defeat as you would in victory, for you will lose, and the yuppies will have already switched to their niners colors before the first cork is popped in the anaheim locker room.