In the spirit of our good friends over at The Shin Guardian, I'd like to proffer a film reference to illustrate my point on today's upcoming game. This one involves the 1960 classic Inherit the Wind, in which Spencer Tracy turned in an Oscar-nominated performance for his role as defending attorney Henry Drummond in the midst of the Scopes Monkey Trial. The film covers a broad swath of humanity, much too deep to delve into properly here, but something about that movie continues to strike me. It is apropos here.
What I'm talking about today is the immutability of truth. Or, if you choose to believe, the ability to challenge "inherent truth" and its principles as they apply to all humans indiscriminantly. This, of course, is the gap.
In the film, Fredric March's character Matthew Harrison Brady refuses to challenge those Biblical precepts he holds dear, refuses to even think them through. He sees. He believes. The end. Drummond, on the other hand, is beholden to the notion that one of our great gifts is the ability to reason, to think, to challenge. What does this mean? Can we get there from there? The beauty is that Drummond's world is not a pure contrast of whitewash and inky black. There are gradients of purple and blue and hues of green and ochre and, hell, maybe even a bit of bronzeberry frost.
I can liken Klinsmann's famed and inflamed "gap" comment more to Brady's world than to Drummond's. Mexico is in the midst of a fantastic run. El Tri is the world U-17 champion, the two-time defending Gold Cup champion and can now add an Olympic gold to the haul. Yes, impressive doings. But, in true Drummond-ian form, what is this gap? How is it defined? And where is it? It would be foolish not to acknowledge Mexico's advancement, but to not leave an equal amount of room for your own — all of which has been done on a parallel but independent track from Mexico — is leaving out vitally important facts. Shades of gray, these. And Klinsmann's assessment will undoubtedly become self-fulfilling, because who in their right mind expects this team to escape the Cauldron of Hell with anything other than a whipping? Not I, anyway. That, unfortunately, is no gap. That's history, altitude, mortifyingly bad air quality and a unruly crowd.
In any case, I just mean to say that this gap Klinsmann speaks of is undefinable and it is impossible to say when this arbitrary measure will be bridged, or if such a thing is even possible. Or what to say about the US's utter domination of the series in the last decade, and where that fits into this gap. So many millions of variables are at play during every nanosecond of a game, who's to say the boys don't nip a result today? History (and about every other conceivable measure) is on Mexico's side, but where would "the gap" be if Mexico tumbles today?
Mind the gap? I say screw the gap.
— Facts and things from ESPN
— Rising tide buoys all ships and so on, says Grant Wahl
— Mexican fans respect us, says man who had a bag of piss thrown at him by Mexican fans
— 0-23-1 in Mexico? But there was that one time...
— Brek Shea is in... so is Alan Gordon. Yup.
- Will Parchman