Monday, April 12, 2010

55 Years of Mexico City History, as told by Sports Illustrated

'Sports Illustrated', founded in 1954, is probably my favorite magazine. I was going through their archive recently and found they had a lot of interesting articles about Mexico City. Not surprisingly, there are a lot fewer articles from the last twenty years. In that time, SI has had a lot less foreign stories, and in general fewer long form articles. It used to be a lot more about hunting, nature, and travel, and now it's heavily focused on mass-market sports (NBA, NFL, etc.). I'm sure the rise of niche magazines for things like hunting, etc. is a reason for this. All that being said, you can find nearly every article ever published in the magazine online for free.

Organized chronologically, here's a few interesting ones about my new city:

-A 1955 article on the Pan-American Games in Mexico City and the affect of the 7,200-foot altitude. I definitely noticed that when I first started playing tennis here.

-A 1955 article about the newly-booming Acapulco, only a few hours drive from Mexico City and a popular weekend retreat for many Chilangos (Mexico City residents).

-An article about the city in general and being a sportsman here, from 1957.

-A 1959 article about Cuernavaca, a weekend town an hour outside of Mexico City.

-A 1960 recap of the U.S. Davis Cup team (tennis) playing a match against Mexico in Mexico City.

-A 1965 article on DF's altitude, as athletes prepared for the 1968 Summer Olympics to be held in Mexico City. (Was 'summer' a bit unnecessary?)

-A lengthy 1966 article on the success of the Mexican Baseball League in luring American stars in 1946.

-An article about the 1966 playing of the Eisenhower Trophy matches, a men's amateur team golf event, that was played at Club de Golf Mexico, the course in my neighborhood (that unfortunately is muy privado).

-A 1967 piece about the social life of the city.

-A story about the 1967 World Cup of Golf (featuring Arnie and Jack) which was played at the aforementioned course.

-A fascinating piece, written in the summer a few months before the Olympics in October 1968, about a gringo driving to Mexico City from America.

-An article written just before the Olympics discussing the tragedy of the government massacre of students at the Plaza de las Tres Culturas.

-A lengthy feature reporting on the sports results at the Olympics.

-An article by Australian Roger Bannister, written post-Olympics, about the effects of competing at such high altitude on the runners. He was the first person to run the mile in less than four minutes.

-A couple months after the Olympics, an in-depth analysis of Bob Beamon's awe-inspiring leap.

-An article reporting on Mexico hosting the 1970 World Cup.

-College football has a long history in Mexico, and this piece from 1971 reports on Notre Dame coming to Mexico City to play a football game against the Mexico City Redskins. The same stadium would host a regular-season game between the Arizona Cardinals and the San Francisco 49ers in 2005. This city has been mentioned as a possible site for an expansion team in the NFL.

-A long and very well-written 1976 article on boxing in la capital, easily Mexico's second favorite sport behind soccer and a chance at freedom from poverty for many youth. (Cock-fighting might be a close 3rd).

-An article from 1981 on former Boston Red Sox star George Scott playing baseball for the Mexico City Tigers after he couldn't get signed by an MLB team.

-An article on the 1986 World Cup, where Diego Maradona and the 'Hand of God' helped Argentina win the championship in Mexico City.

-Rick Reilly's 1989 Mexico Pacific Coast travel guide. Not directly about Mexico City, but related to exico City in this way: What I possibly love most about living here is how many amazing things there are to do within a reasonable drive or a very short flight. Knowing you can have a short drive to either the Pacific or Caribbean, or any variety of parks, makes this chaotic city worth it.

-A 1994 article on Jorge Campos, perhaps Mexico's most famous soccer player in the '90s and a star goalie for Pumas, one of the three teams in Mexico City.

-A 2005 preview of the US trying to finally win a soccer game at Estadio Azteca, and the reporting on the failure yet again.

-A 2008 article on John Carlos, one of the 'Black Power' sprinters at the '68 Olympics who has traveled a long journey from pariah to hero.

I hope you get some enjoyment out of reading this. I just wish the green fees at Acapulco golf club were still $1.20 and that you could rent a house at Las Palmas for $5 a night.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Free Hit Counter