Saturday, October 3, 2009

PDP #110: From Here, From Wrigley

Wrigley Field is one of the temples of baseball, and its occupants, the Chicago Cubs, are the Maple Leafs of the baseball world - they haven't won a World Series since 1908, but their fans love them with a rabid passion regardless. Yesterday, during my exploratory wanderings, I took the 'L' to Addison and ended up circumnavigating Wrigley. From the ballhawks standing around with well-worn mits at the corner of Kenmore and Waveland, to every second building advertising skyboxes or with actual rows of bleachers installed on the roof, and the number of scalpers loudly selling tickets, Wrigley is a hub of energy that completely beats out anything you can find in Toronto.

What really struck me, though, was this line of CTA buses on West Addison, almost half a dozen articulated and a couple of them not, waiting for the Cubs to finish being drubbed by the Diamondbacks (the score, if you're interested, was ultimately 12-3 for the Diamondbacks) and for tens of thousands of worked-up Cubs fans to come streaming out the exits to wherever they're off to.

All of Chicago has that energy, that ever-present dull roar of activity. I think it'll be some time before Toronto can really equal that. Chicago's been a metropolis, relatively speaking, for a hundred and fifty years; until the mid-70s, Toronto was essentially the Indianapolis of the north. If it wasn't for the 500, would anyone care about Indianapolis? I don't know, and that's exactly the thing.

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