Thursday, June 4, 2009

identity crisis

There's a part of me that feels sorry for Anaheim. They have no idea who they are. They're trying to be so many different things.

First, they have a baseball team that doesn't want to be associated with them so much that they'd rather change their name from the Anaheim Angels to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, and they have "Anaheim" in their name only because there's some kind of contractual requirement. But the Angels don't play in Los Angeles. They don't even play in the same county as Los Angeles. But the Angels would rather be associated with Los Angeles.

And now, we're in the midst of the NBA finals. (Yeah, the Lakers beat the Orlando Magic, handily, in game one by a score of 100 to 75. Everyone seems to be celebrating and thinking it's a done deal. It's fine that everyone else is, but I hope the Lakers teammates themselves are not. They've gotten 25% of the job done, but it doesn't count until you do all 100%. Tonight's game is probably not going to be indicative of the other games. They need to stay focussed and not take anything for granted and continue to show the same fight they did tonight.) And because the Lakers are playing the Orlando Magic, there's this whole fake Disney connection because Orlando has Walt Disney World and Southern California has Disneyland. And now, Disneyland is on some Lakers kick, and WDW and Disneyland are making this friendly wager, like you'd see with the mayors of the opposing cities.

But there's one problem. They're not the Anaheim Lakers. And they're not the Southern California Lakers. They're the LOS ANGELES LAKERS. Who play in Los Angeles. Not Anaheim. Who play in Los Angeles County. Not Orange County. Who really have nothing whatsoever to do with the Walt Disney Company except that Disneyland might have some kind of parade with the Lakers if they win, but then, Disneyland does little parades with all kinds of people, and if the Lakers win, they're going to have their own spectacular, much larger kick-ass parade to attend. And it will be held in LOS ANGELES.

So Anaheim has one team that wants nothing to do with them, and now, they want to co-opt a Los Angeles team that has no association with them.


So I follow various Disney feeds on Twitter. And when I read a particular tweet, I really didn't understand. Here's the information from one of the Disney sites.

I'm having a hard time making it past "Disneyland ... Lakers pride" because that concept just doesn't compute for me. That's not to say someone from Orange County or San Bernardino County or wherever can't be a Lakers fan, and that's not to say some random company in another city, county or state couldn't have some affiliation with the Lakers, but this whole association comes out of nowhere. It's like the ultimate bandwagon-jumping.

And, I happen to like Sleeping Beauty Castle. I think it's beautiful, especially when it's lit at night. I don't want it to be purple and gold. I will, however, reserve final judgement until I've seen it for myself, which I'll be doing this weekend.

Hmmm, the French Open has been going on for a couple of weeks, and Disney has a park in France. Wonder why they're not jumping all over that co-promotion?

1 comment:

JeffG said...

Maybe it is because I didn't grow up in Southern California, but I really don't get the complaint about this one at all. It seems plainly obvious to me that Anaheim is a suburb of Los Angeles, even if it is technically in a different county. Maybe I could kind of see this as being weird if there were another Anaheim-based basketball team, but absent that, I can easily see where those in Anaheim would view the Lakers as their local team.

Probably part of the reason why this doesn't seem remotely strange to me is that I lived in the Milwaukee area for several years. Pretty much everyone in Milwaukee thinks of the Green Bay Packers as their local football team, despite the fact that Green Bay is about 120 miles from Milwaukee.

Finally, technically Walt Disney World isn't in Orlando either. There is a county line down the middle of Disney property there, so only part of the complex is even in the same county. Obviously, most people think of WDW as being in Orlando, but my experience when I lived out East was that most people there thought of Disneyland as being in Los Angeles too.