Congratulations to the San Francisco Giants, Champions of the National League West. As I write this they are undefeated in the play offs for 2010. The first game starts in about 20 minutes. I hope they continue on through the playoffs and the World Series and bring the fans here in the Bay Area their first Giants championship. But regardless of what happens it has been a remarkable year. It is sometimes difficult to compare sports to Aikido because aikido is not a sport. It aims at a win/win philosophy that stresses inner development. Sports is about winning.
Yet this team has some spirit. Spirit in the Japanese culture is exemplified by the carp fish. It is said to be able to swim up a waterfall and is thus an example culturally of spirit, a word that is unmistakeable but undefinable. This team was from the beginning a flawed team, and despite the great pitching, still is. It reminds me of the '74-75 Golden State Warriors who won an NBA title. That team had one superstar(Rick Barry) and a lot of role players. But it came together at the right time and swept a heavily favored Washinton Bullets squad to take the title. We will find out if this Giants squad has some of that same magic. No great superstar, but great pitching, a lot of incomplete players buoying each other up, a phenomenal rookie(Buster Posey) issuing in a post Bonds era. I quit on them so many times. Torture is the word that was coined for their gut wretching style of play. So hopefully a la aikido both the team and its fans have forged themselves for a memorable post season run. I can't wait. I'm headed for a tv screen to watch.
Here is a video of the October 2nd Spirit of Japantown demo. My thanks to Steve Tsao, Yu Chen Shen, Shin Tsurushima, Alex Kolbasov, Andrew Le, and to Meng Ear for shooting the video. There is still more photage, and I may format that into another video in the future.