Thursday, October 20, 2005

Don't Stop The Heavin'

Here is my two-word review of Chicago's first World Series in more than four decades: Don't care.

I was born a Cubs fan. While I'm not one of those people whose favorite teams are the Cubs and whoever is playing the White Sox, South Side baseball means nothing to me. Whatever tiny bit of appeal it had disappeared when the wrecking ball brought down the old Comiskey Park. That place had some character, sort of like a gritty, seedy, rotting version of Wrigley Field. The new ballpark is devoid of character; even Bruce Springsteen couldn't give it any spirit (especially from my vantage point in the upper deck). The park's nickname since a corporate sponsor took over, "the Cell," just makes me think of prison, not a place I want to go (though I once visited Stateville in Joliet on a college field trip, coincidentally during the last season the Sox played at the old Comiskey).

But even worse than the generic, soulless venue is the team's latest choice of music. "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey? Yuck. Journey was one of my parents' favorite bands in the early 1980s. My parents generally had decent taste in music, but I couldn't stand Journey then and I can't stand them now. And to think that I was criticizing the Cubs for still using Van Halen's "Jump"--the Journey song is even older! How about "Don't Stop The Bleedin'?" If Steve Perry got cut onstage, that's what I would have said. Not that I would have been anywhere near a stage with Journey on it. I'm just kidding; I don't really wish any ill will on Perry personally, although I would quickly change my mind if he showed up at my house to perform an extended version of "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'"--even my dad faded that song out halfway through the interminable "na-nas" when he recorded the LP onto a cassette tape.

There is only one thing at all redeeming about the White Sox choosing this song. While most of us associate Journey with San Francisco ("my city by the Bay"), "Don't Stop Believin'" was written by Perry, Neal Schon, and Chicago native Jonathan Cain. Despite this connection with Chicago, however, the song still sucks. Thanks a lot, MTV.

UPDATE 10/21/2005 - Famous Chicago radio guy and Sox fan Steve Dahl agrees. But at least it isn't disco!

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