Years of Torture…Worth it? Freak Yeah!

It’s been 56 years since the Giant’s won a World series… and that was in New York.  Now, I am in awe of our San Francisco Giant’s and proud to be a fan!  The Giant’s’ management saw the

vision of finally winning a World Series in San Francisco by uniting a divergent group of athletes that some had labeled “misfits”.  Players that other teams had let go, rookies, players who some said were “has-beens” and unknowns formed a cohesive team that is close to perfect, in this pooches eyes.

World Series Champion, Giant's!

No big names or big egos.  No steroid-deformed big hitters.  I greatly admire scrappiness and the ability to create something grand and great with many little pieces, with unstoppable tenacity.  This Giant’s team embodies the qualities of perseverance, hard-work, cooperation, motivation and hope… in other words, dog-like qualities.

After these past weeks, the entire nation is now throwing around the names of players we have been enamored with since they joined The Giant’s:  Lincecum, Ross, Posey, Renteria, Huff, Sandoval, Wilson, Sanchez, and Torres.  Brian Wilson (Fear the Beard) was even a favorite Halloween costume this year.

With monikers like Kung Fu Panda and The Freak, this team had a special flare long before the national media even noticed.  Now in places far beyond Northern California, baseball lovers are wearing “Let Timmy Smoke” and “Fear the Beard” t-shirts.  Some are surely just jumping on the bandwagon of The Champions, but I think for many, deeper sentiment exists.

I think that fans across the country love to see the underdog prevail, just like with the Saint’s victory earlier this year.  I would like to think that through the example of this special Giant’s squad, and their newfound fans across the country, we can somehow unite, at least on one issue.

Giants win the series!!

We are finally at the end of this divisive election season, so let’s embrace our unity and collective love for the people of this country who really change our lives for the better:  The San Francisco Giant’s!

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The City of Brotherly Love: Phillies at Giants (game 3 NLCS)

Mama had the good fortune to see our Giant’s beat the Phillie’s in person at AT&T park in San Francisco yesterday.  Being a fanatic for the orange and black myself, I was hoping to accompany her, but the ballpark only offers one day per season dedicated to doggie admission.  So, Wilbur and I had the pleasure of spending our day with Chris Wagner of Waggy’s Petsitting in Folsom, which was lovely (but certainly not playoff- game lovely).

When mama returned she relayed to me, in her exhausted and exhilarated state, her fantastic experience at the playoff game.  The game was great for many reasons, the obvious ones being the Giants won, Cody Ross hit for the first RBI (again!) and the heightened sense of love from the crowd towards their team was delicious.  But, the best part of the experience was not even about the game, it goes much deeper than even a playoff situation.  Let me explain.

Yesterday’s playoff game took place in San Francisco, the city where my mama lived for many years as an adult and she grew up only 15 miles from this spectacular city, so for her, S.F. is home.  San Francisco is known for it’s ability to embrace differences and for being on the cusp on cultural change.

Mama often says that she is grateful to have grown up in the Bay Area because she was inundated with the messages of tolerance, kindness, entrepreneurialism and open- heartedness.  Yesterday, these qualities of mama’s lessons embodied the crowd at AT&T park to a degree which my mama had never experienced.

Since the game was in San Francisco, the crowd was heavily weighted towards the home team, with few Phillies fans sporting their red and white pinstripes in the throng.  As these red-jerseyed infidels walked the concourse there were a few boos and catcalls, or course, but not what you’d expect.  And not what these Phillies fans expected either.

You see, when mama approached one of our opponent’s fans, his comment was “I’ve had one guy boo me and ten people ask me if I was enjoying my stay in San Francisco.”    He found this very strange, as he had expected confrontation.

Another supporter from Philadelphia said that more people asked him, with concern, if he was being treated well in the stadium than booed him.  Another shocked baseball-lover from Philly.

A female fan in full Phillie’s regalia said she had never been to California but had expected fights with the local fans, “like in Chicago and Boston”.  She had only been assaulted with pleasantries and restaurant recommendations, not with words or fists, yet, strangely, she seemed disappointed.  She sarcastically asked if the entire city smokes “what Timmy smokes” since everyone was ridiculously friendly and kind.

Philadelphia is known as the City of Brotherly Love, but San Franciscans taught these visiting fans a few things about what that title really means.  It means being courteous and respectful even towards your rival’s supporter.  We feel very proud to be a part of the City by the Bay and our victorious Giant’s.

Winning or losing, San Franciscans demonstrate dignity and respect.  “Just think like a dog”, I always say, and these fans obeyed!

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Don’t Stop Believing

As a baseball fan, I couldn’t be more pleased at the performance by my beloved Giant’s in post-season play so far.  I have a puppy premonition that they will make it to the World Series; to the biggest of The Bigs, for the first time since 2002.  

Fans are… well, fanatical… about the pitching staff and strong bats.  Buster Posey, Brian Wilson, Cody Ross, and Mama’s favorite, sweet young Timmy are proving that the Giant’s are the team to beat.  Everyone is feeling the hope and believing in the dream of a World Series Championship.

Mama was living in the Marina District of San Francisco when the Giant’s were in The Series in 1989; the day of big temblor.  She & her friends came home a bit early from work to ensure beating the traffic so they’d be ready for the first pitch.  This World Series was doubly special for those who grew up in the Bay Area (like my mama), and it was dubbed the Bay Bridge Series, Giant’s vs. A’s.

It was the perfect match up and a gloriously warm Indian summer afternoon.  Mama and her friends congregated at the local pub as the game was about to begin.  The place was crowded and the televisions blaring, when the hanging ceiling lamps began to sway.  And then the elderly bartender lost his footing, and in a nano-second the pub became a roller-coaster with the earth undulating beneath them.

Initially, when “earthquake” registered in mama’s mind, she wasn’t disturbed, as she had experienced earthquakes her entire life.  But it was quickly evident that this was no ordinary slight shift, but a major awakening of the earth.  Mama and the other patrons involuntarily screamed and raced for the exit, only to witness the asphalt of Lombard Street as a moving wave.

Tourists from a nearby hotel were frantic, racing into the street, but mama’s first concern was her cat, Sugar, and she sprinted the two blocks to her apartment building.  Thankfully, Sugar was unharmed, but terrified.  Without electricity, gas, water or telephone, mama and her neighbors gathered together on the rooftop, and watched the marina district burn, while huddling around a small transistor radio.

Strangely, through the chaos and fear post-quake, there was also a feeling of hope.  Hope for our city and hope for our team.  In the days ahead as San Franciscans helped neighbors and family and restored their own abodes, they also held hope that their Giant’s, even in the wake of a devestating earthquake, could come back in the World Series.

Sadly, the Giant’s were swept by the A’s in 1989… But this pup foresees a different outcome this year.  Granted, we have not yet made it to the World Series, but we are almost there… and I have hope!

Don’t Stop Believin‘, Giant’s fans!   I love the fan who made this video and I’m waving my orange rally thong!  (Little known fact:  dogs dig baseball!)

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