By Jon Weisman
Ultimately, when the big moment came, it came in an instant.
By a 12-0 vote, the Los Angeles City Council approves a motion to change the name of Elysian Park Avenue to Vin Scully Avenue.
Then, we are silent, because as we have been taught, there are times when it just makes the best sense to let the crowd speak for itself.
@Dodgers hooray! A great honor for a great man!
— Anne Casanave (@annecasa) January 29, 2016
— Mary B (@s0cal_007) January 29, 2016
When we return, we simply hear these words.
“I am overwhelmed. I was raised in the streets of New York, and to have a street named after me in Los Angeles is almost too much to comprehend. I am eternally grateful to the Los Angeles City Council and especially councilman Gil Cedillo. A path to Dodger Stadium is a pathway to my heart. For 55 years, it has been an honor to walk that road to one of the greatest entertainment centers in the world, a place that has brought so much joy to all of us. I thank God for this great honor.”
And like that, Vin Scully has touched home, just as he has touched our souls. Forever.
Within 30 days, given the expected blessing of local residents, the existing street signs will be lowered and new ones raised.
“How do you get to the game?” offered Cedillo, who introduced the motion. “Go up Sunset and turn on Vin Scully Avenue.”
I’ll say this much, and don’t misunderstand this as opposition to today’s events: I love the words “Elysian Park.” They’re a melody in four beats, and their long association with my home away from home evokes a Proustian sensation. It had to be something special, something transcendent, to justify replacing them as the address of Blue Heaven on Earth.
Vin Scully Avenue meets that standard. One small street for Vin, one giant drive for fankind.
No name could be more worthy, except perhaps, as one citizen (a fellow Fordham grad, he told us) argued during his opportunity at City Hall for public comment, Jackie Robinson. But the groundbreaking Dodger is getting Dodger Stadium’s inaugural statue — no small honor, that.
I don’t feel Robinson has been done a disservice, and I do think it was worth showing Scully how much he has meant to all of us.
“I’d be okay if we named the whole damn city after him,” councilman Paul Koretz exulted. And who could argue?