We could talk about the ballgame. The Cubs, the Sox, the Contreras grand slam.
But look behind home plate for a moment.
At a man, a brand, a technicolor dreamcoat bringing meaning out of the void—beauty so deep it almost hurts.
As we remember, as Nietzsche once said:
If you stare into the abyss, the yellow M&M’s jacket stares back at you.
I swear the guy in the M&M's jacket is at every White Sox game. pic.twitter.com/41GC7i9JgZ
— Shane Hulsey (@shanehulsey6) September 27, 2014
This past week, the Met Gala went on in New York. The pinnacle of modern elegance in fashion, flowing down the steps of the Metropolitan Museum.
And in a green plastic seat in Chicago yesterday, one man shines above the entire event.
Look at him and marvel.
The name alone rings profound—they call him:
It may not be understood yet, but there’s a movement underway. Not one man, but a man with colleagues, you might say. Occupying the seats of America’s ballparks, lounging behind home plate, tempting away the camera’s focus as it broadcasts each pitch.
There’s (1) our guy the White Sox homer, at every game.
(2) And then counterpart, Pink Hat Man, at every Cubs home game.
Then (3) the traveler, roaming the league every night.
And your voice almost chokes up, thinking for a moment of Daisy in The Great Gatsby.
“They’re such beautiful shirts,’ she sobbed, her voice muffled in the thick folds. ‘It makes me sad because I’ve never seen such—such beautiful shirts before.’”
This is most definitely a movement.
And a movement with a precedent. A sort of cousin phenomenon to this pageant of fabric, of swagger—unclear if any influence has connected the two, or if each grew on its own.
Like the echidna and hedgehog, evolving similar traits on opposite ends of the globe. Newton and Leibniz, inventing calculus separately, coincidentally at the same time.
Whatever its origins…
La Sape, in its great glory, has arrived in our national pastime.
And so, today, in the timeline of baseball sape, in the first inning of the Crosstown Classic, something notable occurred:
A fraternity of sapeurs has formed. In the front row behind home.
— heidi (@hackerm) May 11, 2018
An occasion that has, apparently, happened before.
Pink Hat Guy, Jim Anixter, is the original Marlins Man. Told me he wears pink hat so his wife knows he’s at game & not cheating. pic.twitter.com/WYwe5ArCc7
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) October 11, 2017
— Billy Krumb (@ClubhouseCancer) May 29, 2013
So this is big. A groundswell of low-brow fashion sense is building.
Don’t sleep on it. Not for one moment.
Trends might begin in obscure, undetectable places, but then spread—trickling down from runway shows onto college campuses, into music videos, into social media.
And in this case, we’re witnessing the day one moment.
We all become the coolhunters, as Malcolm Gladwell might say. When what’s cool in this case is quite clearly, undeniably cool.
Seeing this display in the front row, you can picture it going mainstream. The way blue jeans or sneakers once did.
And picture the originators gathering, however big this all gets. The forefathers of la sape américain displaying their stylings before the masses. Under the lights, a national audience, a new tradition forged from humble beginnings.
The Baseball Sape Festival.
The first day of All-Star weekend.
Marlins Man strutting down the catwalk, tilting his visor for the judges and sucking in his gut. Pink Hat Man hobbling down behind him, waving at the crowd. And our man in the M&M’s jacket, zipping it up and down, twirling in place, the jacket coming off, twisting around his head, tossed into the air, as he strides back down the runway and off into the annals of fashion iconography.
They say the MLB Commissioner wants to bring new energy into the game.
Well, right here is your answer.
Fête du Sape, 2018. Make it happen.
It’ll change everything.
PS: A game of baseball did go on during all of this: with a Willson Contreras grand slam in the first inning, the Cubs ahead 5-0, and going on to win 11-2. Far more important things than that are underway, but, you know, “fyi”.
My name is Willson Contreras.
You hit my friend Kris.
Prepare to fly. pic.twitter.com/yX4vqkI8Sb
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) May 11, 2018