Giants bat US presidential election into the bleachers
In a city with food from every corner of the earth, there isn’t a Venezuelan community big enough to support one Venezuelan restaurant. Limon serves Peruvian food and the Venezuelan players, with San Francisco at their feet, make do with that.
All of these little stories, plus the pennants in the windows, plus the babies wearing Giants T-shirts, plus the old ladies in their Giants sweatshirts, which are also worn by their dogs, have had a profound effect here on public interest in the election. It just seems downright unpleasant when put up against San Francisco’s triumphal progress to its second World Series in three years. In terms of baseball this is in stark contrast to the fate of the Giants’ state rivals, the Dodgers, who are based in Los Angeles and have won two World Series championships in 31 years. In terms of politics California is pretty well ceded to the Democrats anyway, and all the Democratic Party workers are being bused in to canvass in Nevada.
The third presidential debate, for example, passed without a murmur. “Well, it was on foreign policy,” as one man explained.
Meanwhile, the San Francisco Opera is showing as much baseball as any bar, and is forever flashing up Giants scores at the interval. On Tuesday night, at a performance of Moby-Dick, a slim young man, whom one can only assume was the composer, Jake Heggie, came out to take a bow and immediately put on a Giants cap, to a tidal wave of audience approval. It is reported that the Giants games are shown on TVs in the lobbies of the opera house, although I haven’t seen that myself.
San Francisco buses have been displaying “Go Giants!” signs on their destination boards since at least September.
The sheer happiness of the population in its team is amazing. Mayor Edwin M Lee announced on Saturday that yesterday’s game could be seen on big screens situated next to City Hall. You know the way sport can unite a town? You know that special quiet that falls on a city during a big game? All these things are happening in San Francisco right now.
Until we – I mean they – win the World Series, and possibly for quite a while afterwards, it is difficult to contemplate anything as routine as an election.