I wasn't able to join 800,000 of my friends for the Royals World Series victory parade today. I followed the festivities on television and radio. Every channel and every station celebrated the Royals plenty, but most of the coverage amounted to love letters to Kansas City. That was fine by me. There's a lot to celebrate about Kansas City.
I approach Kansas City with the zeal of a convert. The beautiful thing about Kansas City, the thing that converted me in the first place, is how willing it is to accept converts. I'm a fan of the Royals, but I'm even more of a fan of the city that I found after roaming from the Ozarks to the east and then to the west.
My wife and I were surprised when, after so many moves, the move to Kansas City stuck. We arrived back in the dark ages before fast Internet connections and years beginning with a "2." We've limited ourselves to local moves ever since. I'm happy to count my few acres near LFK as part of the Greater Kansas City area.
When I travel, I always tell people that I'm from Kansas City; after I tell them that, all too often I have to explain where Kansas City is. I've been able to explain geography to people on three continents, but I've never been able to explain Kansas City to anyone who didn't already know the place.
There's more here than baseball and soccer and barbecue--wonderful as those are. Kansas City isn't just the City of Fountains or Paris on the Plains. Kansas City is more than a place where an itinerant hillbilly can find a welcome and build a life, even though that's been plenty for me.
Kansas City is a place where, according to a caller to one of the radio stations I listened to this afternoon, a little boy in a wheel chair will be helped over curbs and to the front of the ocean of blue along the parade route. Kansas City is a place where women and men, boys and girls, people of all races and ages, can celebrate together wearing a most lovely shade of blue with scarcely a problem even though they are packed in cheek-to-jowl. Kansas City is a place where you do your job and keep the line moving so that the people coming after you have a chance to do their job. Kansas City may be flyover country to some, but it's home to me.
It's also home to the World Series Champions. That's pretty cool.