It was a windy, overcast day in San Francisco, but the mood couldn't have been sunnier. The San Francisco Giants held their World Series victory parade on Wednesday in front of hundreds of thousands of cheering, adoring fans. The parade was held down Market Street, particularly suitable for the cause due to its wideness. Fans twenty rows deep lined the sides of the street while fans watching from windows high above the festivities threw streamers down to the ground. Unlike in 2010, orange and black confetti was blown over the players and fans alike. With the celebration held on Halloween one might have expected more people in costume, but most people were simply wearing orange and black Giants gear. The crowd skewed a little younger in age than the parade in 2010, but the fans have not been waiting so long for this championship to come.In 2010 all the employees of the club including the players rode in the city's famous cable cars, but this year the players rode individually in convertible cars. Bruce Bochy rode in a beautiful silver Rolls Royce, holding the championship trophy. The Rolls ran out of gas halfway through the parade and had to be pushed the rest of the way. Some of the players had special drivers- Matt Cain and his family were driven by 49ers quarterback Alex Smith, while Brandon Belt was chauffered by Niners coach Jim Harbaugh. Ahead of the players, also in cars went several past Giants legends such as Gaylord Perry, Juan Marichal, Willie McCovey and the great Willie Mays. Brian Wilson, unlike the rest of the players, did ride on a cable car, wearing a light blue jacket and some sort of grey hat thing.
At one point, Sergio Romo got out of his car and went to celebrate with the masses, despite the team having instructed the players to stay in their cars. Romo caused quite the stir with his black shirt that read, "I Just Look Illegal". Romo was clearly in the top two or three Giants in terms of popularity, at least on this day.
Once the parade reached City Hall, the speeches began. Mayor Ed Lee gave an excited but long-winded speech, and at the end presented the entire Giants team with the Key to the City. Furthermore, by virtue of their having swept the Tigers in the World Series, he presented them with the Broom to the City. One wonders how many taxpayer dollars were spent solely in an effort to make fun of Detroit. Not enough of them, I say.
Jon Miller and Dave Flemming came up to introduce the players, and did a little skit beforehand which included them both dancing Gangnam Style, to the delight of the capacity crowd on hand. The biggest cheers went to Buster Posey, Pablo Sandoval, and above all Sergio Romo, who has to be considered a major local (and possibly national) celebrity at this point. Mike Krukow and Duane Kuiper invited the fans to participate in mock announcing of home runs, symbolizing the elimination of the Dodgers, Reds, Cardinals, and finally the Tigers. The crowd booed the mere mention of the Dodgers so lustily that they barely joined Kuiper's call at all, but were all in on the Reds, Cardinals and Tigers.
The festivities came to an end with the team taking a photo with the trophy, and then as a total surprise, Tony Bennett himself came out on stage and led the crowd in a rendition of "I Left My Heart In San Francisco". One cannot imagine a more perfect day, or one more representative of the city as a whole. It was a good day to be a Giants fan.