In a little less than 12 hours, the 2017 World Series between the Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers will begin here in sweltering Los Angeles. Traffic should have died down somewhat (I’m desperately hoping) by the time I drive home on the 101 through Echo Park during this evening’s rush hour, but I expect traffic to be shitty(er) than normal. But hey! Our Doyers (hate that) have reached this pinnacle of post-season play for the first time in 30 years, so I should not complain.
1988 bears little resemblance to 2017 in too many ways. In 1988, we raced down to LAX to greet our World Series winners upon their flight back from Oakland. It was late at night and the World Series was just that. A best of 7 championship set of games.
In 1988 it was fun and games. Frivolity with an edge.
But the 2017 series between Los Angeles and Houston is rife with mythological context. The series is emblematic of deep divisions and tragic nuances that afflict our modern American culture. I foresee this series assuming legendary status in America’s folklore as only baseball can bestow. I root for the Dodgers because I live in Los Angeles, and have all my life. I will root for them despite the fact they will symbolize Team Left, Team Hollywood. Team California, land of Nancy Pelosi and every other rote scumbag elitist liberal, whereas the Houston Astros represent Blue America, the Right; Donald Trump, even. Of course Houston, the city, is nothing of the sort, but symbolically it represents Texas, middle America, land of unabashed pro-America conservatism. Unfettered free markets.
It’s not a question of what Los Angeles and Houston objectively define, demographically and geopolitically, but about what they represent to to our collective imagination.
- It’s about Blue vs. Red.
- Immigration vs. nationalism.
- It’s about athletes who kneel vs. athletes who play.
- It’s about bleeding heart America vs. Donald Trump and the pragmatists of the new Right.
- It’s about the Coasts vs. the Heartland.
- It’s about Los Doyers vs. The Astros.
- It’s about entitled glamour vs. toil.
- Most of all, its about redefining the paradigm housing the American Dream.
Don’t believe for a minute that the 2017 World Series is just a “game.” It is a cultural landmark face-off, a battle by proxy, of two Americas smoldering beneath a dagger of cultural division. Never has a World Series denoted so much about the fragmented American dream than it does in 2017.