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Found 18 results

  1. Some people might not know that the Washington Senators of Walter Johnson fame were a different franchise than the lovable losers we had playing here during the 1960s - the original team (which played 1901-1960) became the Minnesota Twins, while this franchise (1961-1971) became the Texas Rangers (*). These Senators' highlights were Frank Howard, and Ted Williams - who managed them to a winning season in 1969 (unless you want to include Ed "Big Stick" Brinkman, for whom Mark Belanger was grateful (*)). Here's Richard Nixon throwing out the opening day ball in 1969, with Teddy Ballgam
  2. Wendy Chioji was a hero of mine. She said "no" when I asked her to homecoming in 1978, because she knew she could do better (she was right, though I do pat myself on the back for having taken a week to work up the courage to ask her). "Wendy Chioji, Legendary Central Florida News Anchor, Has Died" by Dave Plotkin on orlandoweekly.com We'll all miss you, Wendy. 😢 Thank you for all you've done, both to live an inspired life, and to help inspire others. God, this girl was a cancer warrior, like you have no idea. She literally had chemo, then went out and climbed Mount Kilimanjaro f
  3. This is extremely sad. "Philly's Restaurant Community Toasts Cocktail Maven Katie Loeb, Now in Hospice" by Danya Henninger on billypenn.com "Restaurant Community Remembering Katie Loeb" by Michael Klein on philly.com
  4. Eddie Gaedal is one of the few players in MLB history with a 1.000 OBP, having walked in his only major-league at-bat. A slash line of .300/.400/.500 (Batting Average / On-Base Percentage (OBP) / Slugging Percentage) represents a superb season; an OPS (On-Base Percentage + Slugging Percentage) of 1.000 represents a Hall of Fame-caliber season. Gaedal had both an OBP of 1.000, and an OPS of 1.000, both Hall of Fame-level numbers, had he been able to maintain them for a career. He also holds (or shares) the all-time Walks / Appearances mark of 1.000, and I believe him to be a legi
  5. Wynton Marsalis holds a special place in my heart, in that he's the most famous person (sorry, Jon 🍷) with whom I've ever had an extended conversation. On Jan 19, 1984, he performed a modern jazz concert at UNC-Charlotte - not long after his Grammy triumph - and my professor, my fellow student, and I drove two hours each way (from Clemson) to see it. Unbeknownst to the entire crowd, there was a "meet-and-greet" after the performance in a small room - we happened to overhear that it was occurring - and we got to speak with him, just the three of us, for what must have been twenty minutes - he e
  6. I didn't realize they just began serving breakfast at Tiffany's when I decided two days ago to watch this film for the first time. The timely, food-related connection eluded me. I watched the film because it was free with Amazon Prime AND as a self-professed Audrey Hepburn fanatic, I felt guilty that I hadn't seen it. As I began watching the film, parts seemed familiar (oddly enough, the scenes involving Holly Golightly's unnamed cat), so I think when I was younger it may have been shown on television and I half-watched some of it. This time, I gave "Breakfast at Tiffany's" my undivided a
  7. This reminds me of the tragedy of Lyndon Johnson, who without Vietnam would be unquestionably one of our greatest presidents, in the same class with Lincoln and FDR. It just makes me weep when I think of it. Of course I hated him at the time, but that was all about Vietnam, which overshadowed everything. You younger people probably can't even imagine how Vietnam distorted and disfigured everything about our civic life as it crept into the crannies of our souls. You couldn't even fuck without Vietnam obtruding into the crevices of your pleasures. I look back on LBJ's presidency now and can
  8. For several years, I was a Big Brother, until my little brother, Ali, his mom Iris, and his sister, Naimah, moved to San Diego to stake out a better life for themselves. I remember taking his family to the airport, and had to pay for their cat to get on the plane because they didn't have the money. I only saw Ali once more after that, a few years later when I went to visit their family out in San Diego. We drove up to Los Angeles because Ali wanted to go to the Spike Lee Store, where everything was overpriced and of questionable quality. I bought him a T-shirt, and paid twice what it was
  9. People don't remember how great Don Mattingly was for awhile - I was actually going to make an investment, and buy about 50 of his rookie cards (I am glad I didn't make that mistake, since the baseball card market completely collapsed). Without looking at any statistics, I have a vague recollection of him having a ton of RBIs, and I remember a good friend of mine commenting on how he always led the league in doubles, too. What happened to him? I guess I could read his Wikipedia entry, but he seemed like a sure-fire Hall of Fame player, and then ... fizzle. I did see that he had
  10. I got the notion to start re-watching "The Hustler" today because I saw a couple excerpts from "The Color of Money," the supposed "sequel" and absolute disappointment to The Hustler - the two movies shouldn't be mentioned in the same review because The Hustler is a classic; The Color of Money is lame - I remember a friend of mine saying - when it was out in the theaters in 1986, "This could have been so good, and it was such a disappointment," and I could not agree more. Tom Cruise was an embarrassment in his role, and Paul Newman played a weak character, running on fumes, when he should have
  11. Refer also to "Parity in Baseball: A Blessing or a Curse?" Not to mention the splitting of the leagues into divisions in 1969, which means that the best team in the league was no longer guaranteed of going to the World Series. I was recently doing some research about Al Kaline and Harmon Killebrew vis-a-vis Mickey Mantle to see whether or not there was some merit to the hypothesis that those two players would have gotten Mantle-like fame had they played for the Yankees (I believe they would have, if they had comparable stats) - but I didn't get far enough into my research, because I read tha
  12. It's pretty obviously the Beach Boys doing a pantomime "live" performance for video to go with their audio recording of "I Get Around", but without the audio of the record. When this was put together with the audio, we got this: which is actually pretty wonderful. I love the Beach Boys, who were no more dependent on studio recording than were the Beatles to make a great sound: I can hardly convey how happy "Shut Down" makes me, every time I hear it:
  13. It's pointless to tag all of Wayne Gretzky's career NHL records - he has his own Wikipedia page of them. Here's how times have changed: In the 1980s, Wayne Gretzky was so famous that I used to tell people that the three most famous people in the world born in the same year as me were Eddie Murphy, Princess Di, and Wayne Gretzky. Feeding off of these posts, I'm very curious how much I missed not fully appreciating watching Gretzky play - *everyone* knew him, but I didn't understand what he was doing, or how good he really was, except from what I kept reading in the papers. So how good *wa
  14. Cal Yastrzemski, affectionately (and practically) known as "Yaz" by his fans, was an incredibly durable 18-time All-Star for the Boston Red Sox. Although he played some of his later career at 1st Base and Designated Hitter, he was primarily known as a Left Fielder. Yaz was the first player with both 3,000 hits and 400 home runs. His longevity made him not only a beloved fixture in Boston, but also earned him second place all-time in MLB Games Played, and third place all-time for MLB At-Bats. He is the all-time Red Sox leader in career RBIs, runs, hits, singles, doubles, total bases, and games
  15. So one day my brother is changing flights in an airport. Stopping by the airport bar he sees Dan who really looks like he doesn't want to be bothered. My brother walks up to Dan and says "Jon W, Central Catholic class of 1982. Nice to meet you." Upon meeting a fellow Viking, Dan's demeanor changes. "Good to meet you. Sit down and have beer." They chat for a while when two women walk up and ask Dan if they can take a picture with him. He says, "Sure, but you have to have my good friend Jon in it, too." So somewhere out there. Some woman has a prized photo of herself and Dan Marino and my
  16. We have been enjoying the Young Concert Artists, a concert series held at the Kennedy Center (as well as in NYC) which features up-and-coming classical musicians. Artists are chosen via an international audition and are provided with recitals, educational, and management opportunities. The DC performances are held at the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theater, usually on a Monday or Tuesday night (when much of the Center is quiet). The artists usually perform 4 or 5 pieces, some solo but often accompanied by piano or violin. Last night featured 19 year old French clarinetist Raphaí«l Sévère (y
  17. I've never quite understood why Lola Albright, who was a radiant presence on the Peter Gunn television series in the 1950s and who could obviously sing, didn't have more of a career than she had. Here she is singing "How High the Moon" on a Peter Gunn episode. It's remarkable that they would take this much time for a musical number that in no way advanced the plot in a half-hour drama. Back in the late 1970s (I don't remember the year, 1979 probably, I could look it up), there was a pre-Broadway tryout at the Kennedy Center of a new play by Tennessee Williams called "Clothes for a Summer Hot
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