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Jim’s The Definitive E vs. L (2006) was able to exhaust the contrasts and similarities between Team Eugene and Team Lester when it comes to the teams’ origins, purposes, resources, prowess, impacts, and legacies. As holistic as it initially looks, the post has unfortunately left one to hunger for a more philosophical and deeper meaning for the two. This post aims to expound and give the latent, symbolic, socio-political, and deconstructive levels of meaning to these polar alignments.
Gow’s E vs. L of 2006 stated that the relationship between the two (team Eugene and team Lester) is similar to that of “An empire against a stabilized rebellion” (2006), and that “Team Lester spawned as a result of Team Eugene” (2006). Supporting statements from his posts were analogies of a government getting drunk with power and an emergence of a resistance to fight the corrupt (Gow, 2006). This leads us to the concept between the mainstream vs. the unconventional.
Correct? Yes and no. Yes, because it is mainstream vs. the alternative, and no, because it is not only so. It is also a microcosm for the balance of power, for power checking, and negation.
The roots of Team Eugene can be traced on early 2004, where people who got nothing better to do in the clique called the13 made a clique-fad called Team Eugene, whose purpose is to exercise and rejoice the doctrine and values that Eugene lived by. A defunct Friendster account is a testament to this organization’s impact to the society.
As time went on, the people who got nothing better to do in the13 got tired of having just one dominant clique-fad to make fun of and made a second polar opposite clique-fad called Team Lester to contradict all the doctrine and values of Team Eugene, just for the spite of it.
Parallelisms in History
This concept (mainstream vs. the alternative) is epitomized by the outcome of the Vietnam War, where Vietnamese guerilla tactics, a form of unconventional warfare, successfully resisted and the Americans and their knowledge of traditional warfare.
Secondly, national democracy rose as the counterpart to the political ideology of communism (power checking) during the Cold War.
Finally, team Lester’s emergence is the need to negate Team Eugene, just as Agent Smith negated Neo in the Wachowski brothers’ Matrix trilogy (1999, 2003).
Now, for a more symbolic interpretation, one would only need to take a look at the first letter of each team’s names – the letters “E” and “L”. From observation, one would be able to conclude that the “L” emerged from the “E” (signifying team Lester emerging from team Eugene), as it is similar in writing to the other, only with two less strokes. Negating the two letters, one will be left with two horizontal strokes, the “=”, or the equal sign (when you negate the two teams, what is left would be something that's equal, implying and exemplifying that they cancel each other out).
Yours truly went through the effort of validating each team’s socio-political alignment by answering a political compass survey (http://politicalcompass.org) with each Team’s psyche in mind.
Basically, Team Eugene’s core value is that one would lean himself to a particular alignment that would serve him best depending on the season, while Team Lester’s core value is based on popular policies and democratic tendencies.
Results showed that Team Eugene's political alignment is Authoritarian Centralist, while Team Lester is Libertarian Rightist.
Deconstructive Level of Meaning
Therefore, if one wishes to answer the question of who is better than the other, the probable answer is that it is only a matter of preference and perspective, because in the end, no team would rise over the other. It is a most unfortunate eternal struggle.
One team cannot simply exist on its own. It has to negate the other. Because if not (and one would win over the other), dystopia will definitely arise.
Papayag ba kayo na panay daga sa mundo o kaya panay dota na lang ang mananaig? Tha'd be pretty senseless. So there. Here’s to a kuwentong walang kuwenta, salaysay na walang saysay, and a babalang puro kabalbalan.