Posts Tagged ‘Contemporary’

30 Random Things… including Meadowlark Lemon!

December 1, 2015

Meadowlark

1. Gorillas are my favorite animal.

2. I once had an autographed picture of boxer Duane Bobick.

3. My favorite musician is Warren Zevon.

4. In 1978, Olympic swimmer John Naber rushed me off a pay telephone at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana.

5. My 1999 Toyota Corolla has over 275,000 miles on its odometer.

6. I know all of the words to the Canadian National Anthem.

7. I’m a card-carrying member of The Three Stooges fan club.

8. I once rolled ten strikes in a row the very first time I used a new custom bowling ball that I bought on eBay. Never came close since.

9. Boiling in hot water is my preferred way of cooking hamburgers.

10. Shoulders are my favorite female body part.

11. I once ran into goaltender Bernie Parent coming out of a convenience store and held the door open for him.

12. I regret not picking up the cork from a champagne bottle celebration after Hulk Hogan beat the Iron Shiek to become wrestling champion.

13. While also working at the Madison Square Garden Network in New York City, I once gave Wayne Gretzky a television set.

14. As a child, I remember throwing up in the dentist’s chair. The dentist had hairy fingers and I gagged on a loose hair.

15. I like redheaded women.

16. Of all the movies that I have ever seen, I think I have watched “Goodfellas” the most.

17. The tip of the middle finger of my right hand needed 14 stitches when it nearly got cut off in the spokes of a bicycle.

18. I always had success fishing using slices of hotdogs as bait.

19. I remember crying when I once missed an annual episode of The Grinch That Stole Christmas. Had to wait 364 days to see it again.

20. Tying a postcard to a helium balloon to see how far it travels is something I always wanted to do.

21. In my youth, I was almost electrocuted playing “Hide The Penny” at a neighbor’s house. He hid it inside a lamp fixture.

22. I unofficially once held the world’s record for snatching a pile of quarters that were first balanced on my extended elbow.

23. Seeing Meadowlark Lemon and the Harlem Globetrotters perform live was a childhood thrill of mine. Immediately following that exhibition, I got to see Billy Cunningham score his 10,000th point as a Philadelphia 76er against the Cincinnati Royals.

24. My blood type is O Positive… universal donor.

25. As a kid, I nearly choked to death on a sour ball piece of candy.

26. “Act your age, not your shoe size” was a common expression. The closet I came was wearing size 12 at age 13.

27. I once won something in a drawing from a local television station but the letter arrived AFTER the deadline to pick up the prize.

28. I stand exactly 6 feet 0 inches tall.

29. I keep currency inside my wallet in ascending order with all Presidents facing the same way.

30. I once accidentally sent my first-born child to school with a can of beer in his lunchbox. Later I had some explaining to do with the school principal.

The United States Of America is anything but united

November 1, 2015

AMERICAN'T

The diversity of our country that once was the glue in the fabric of our existence is now at its core in tearing us apart.

No longer is America the model melting pot that it was at the start of the 20th century. It’s now the 21st century and its individual parts are screaming among themselves and shattering this country into pieces.

Whites push their own agenda.

Blacks have their own stance.

Hispanics demand to be recognized.

Asians stand up for themselves.

Christians. Catholics. Jews. Muslims. Episcopalians. Methodists. Mormons. Gays. Lesbians. Feminists. Undocumented Immigrants. Democrats. Republicans. Liberals. Conservatives.

Every individual group that makes up our country is out for themselves. They form their own caucuses. They have their own newspapers. They create their own websites.

They broadcast over their own stations. They form their own opinions and hold fast to their own convictions.

They network. They organize.

Social media provides for their own voices to be heard but no one is listening. The voices are talking over one another like the biblical Tower of Babel.

In our infinite wisdom in the advancement of technology, we’ve gotten dumber.

We’re so connected that we’ve become disconnected.

We’ve alienated ourselves from each other.

We’ve lost the ability to co-exist.

One for all and all for one and every man for himself.

The United States of America is anything but united.

The Divided States of America.

It’s seen on our television sets. It’s written about in newspapers.

It’s plastered in blogs and comment sections all over the internet.

We’re in trouble. We’re in serious trouble. It’s a sad state of affairs.

Not only is our country in trouble. This phenomenon has spread globally.

Our entire planet is in trouble.

E.A.R.T.H. = Educate And Reform The Humans

We need unity. We need harmony. We need compatibility. We need understanding.

We need peace. We need to work together. We need to re-group.

We need reform. We need to recognize our own humanity. We need each other.

We. Not I. There is no I in team. We need to become better team players.

We need to realize that our whole is greater than the sum of our parts.

R. Buckminster Fuller was right. The belief in Spaceship Earth is our only true salvation.

Jackie Robinson Was A Fighter To The Very End

August 16, 2015

robinson

By joining the Brooklyn Dodgers organization in 1947, Jackie Robinson brought down the color line by becoming the first African-American player in the 20th century to play professional baseball since Cap Anson set that barrier using ugly language back in the 1880’s.

Jackie Robinson not only changed baseball but he helped change the world. He once said “A life is only as important as the impact it has on other lives” and it is truly poetic as being his own personal mission statement.

When one thinks about baseball and the color line, Robinson’s name immediately comes up. One would need to do research to
discover the first black players to enter football (Charles Follis), basketball (Earl Lloyd) or hockey (Willie O’Ree).

I don’t recall if it was teammate Duke Snider or Carl Erskine but someone once claimed that Jackie was a better ballplayer when he was angry. He took out his anger by playing harder and using that aggression to beat his opponents on the playing field.

The problem I see and feel sorry for the most with Jackie is that he never seemed to stop being angry. He understood his role in Branch Rickey’s “great experiment” and carried his race on his back throughout not only his baseball career but throughout his entire life. Some say they think his internal anger helped to kill him at the early age of 53. He suffered from diabetes but I tend to believe that Robinson never learned to take the burden he carried for his people off his shoulders.

After retiring from baseball, Robinson served as vice president of personnel with the coffee company Chock Full O’ Nuts. He tried opening a bank for blacks. He tried selling life insurance to blacks as it was difficult to get coverage. He tried his hand at franchising a Sea Host restaurant which was similar to Arthur Treacher’s Fish and Chips. Nothing he did outside of baseball was ever able to make up for what he did in baseball and, as sportswriter Dick Young pointed out, that was the real tragedy of being Jackie Robinson. He couldn’t give up the fight because that’s all he ever knew how to do.

He stayed quite active in civil rights. He enjoyed politics. He led picket lines. He traveled to the deep South in support of Dr.
Martin Luther King during the turbulent 1960’s. If he had nothing left to fight for, he was lost.

Adjectives that describe Jackie Robinson include courageous, dedicated and trailblazer.

Other words could be stubborn, hot-tempered and narrow-minded.

Any way that you look at it, Jackie Robinson was an original.

James “Buster” Douglas Drops Mike Tyson

August 15, 2015

boxing_tokyo
The year was 1990. Mike Tyson’s tenth title defense. 9th round in Tokyo. “I was in the zone, man, I was in that zone, THAT ZONE,” recalls Douglas, “It was just my time to shine.”

Tyson got nailed by a punch and fell down onto the canvas, groping for his mouthpiece, while the referee counted him out. Halfway around the world, Americans who stayed up during the wee small hours of the morning to watch this bout were stunned.

Tyson was knocked out. Odds against James “Buster” Douglas were 42-to-1.

Jack Ruby Said LBJ Had It In For JFK

August 15, 2015

Original caption: Jack Ruby's defense lawyer, searching for evidence that the killer of Lee Harvey Oswald may not get a fair trial in Dallas, denied a report that Ruby visited Communist Cuba last year. Ruby seemed to be in a better mood as he talked to newsmen before the start of the second day of his court hearing, in order to get his trial to some other Texas city. February 11, 1964 Dallas, Texas, USa

Jack Ruby, a Dallas nightclub owner, killed Lee Harvey Oswald, who the Warren Commission concluded was the lone gunman in the slaying of John F. Kennedy.

In a videotaped statement, Ruby said, “When I mentioned about Adlai Stevenson, if he was Vice President there would never have been an assassination of our beloved President Kennedy.” Asked if he would explain it again Ruby continued “Well the answer is the man in office now.” – that man was Lyndon B. Johnson.

Later, in a hand-written note, Ruby wrote, “Isn’t it strange that Oswald, who hasn’t worked a lick most of his life, should be fortunate enough to get a job at the Book Building two weeks before the President himself didn’t know as to when he was to visit Dallas, now where would a jerk like Oswald get the information that the President was coming to Dallas?”

He continued on, “Only one person could have had that information, and that man was Johnson who knew weeks in advance as to what was going to happen, because he is the one who was going to arrange the trip for the President, this had been planned long before the President himself knew about, so you can figure that one out.”

He wrote further, “The only one who gained by the shooting of the President was Johnson, and he was in a car in the rear and safe when the shooting took place. What would the Russians, Castro or anyone else have to gain by eliminating the President? If Johnson was so heartbroken over Kennedy, why didn’t he do something for Robert Kennedy? All he did was snub him.”

Jacqueline Kennedy was aware of Johnson’s hatred for her husband and his brother, often referring to the pair as members of the Irish mafia.

Does Johnny Damon belong in Baseball’s Hall of Fame?

August 14, 2015

JD
One fan says, “Hall of Very Good.”

Another fan states, “No. If he did, they would have to start calling the Hall of Fame the Hall of Players who are Above Average.”

Johnny Damon’s best supporter for a Cooperstown plaque is Johnny Damon himself.

He told Tyler Kepner of The New York Times, “I think even if you look at my numbers now, how high I am on the runs list, how high I am on the doubles list, and you also have to take into account the ballparks that I’ve played in. I’ve played in some pretty tough ones for left-handers. If I played in Yankee Stadium my whole career, my 230 home runs turn into 300, easy.”

Most ballplayers don’t push for their own selection towards such enshrinement.

Baseball fan Tony Cunningham comments on Hardball Times that “Damon was very good, but not quite a Hall of Fame player even if he got to 3000 hits.”

Damon ended his playing career with 2,769 career hits.

Bill Petti of Sports Blog Nation agrees, “End of the day, I think Damon was a very, very good player, but not necessarily Hall of Fame worthy.”

Petti does add, “However, his unique blend of statistics combined with playing for two championship teams in major markets and being one of the most recognizable personalities in baseball will certainly endear him to a number of voters when the time comes.”

Denmark Lost Her Native Daughter

August 11, 2015

danish_country

Toby passed away the other day. She was tall and lanky.

She always seemed to wear a smile.

Never heard her say a bad word about anybody.

She could never hurt a fly.

I’ll always think kindly of this Danish woman.

May she rest in peace.

The Blowing-The-Lid-Off-The-JFK-Investigation Backfire

August 10, 2015

multi_image

Dorothy Kilgallen was a newspaper gossip columnist and “What’s My Line” game show panelist.

After an exclusive interview with Jack Ruby, Lee Harvey Oswald’s killer, she announced that she was going to blow the lid off of John F. Kennedy’s shooting in Dallas. Later, Kilgallen was found dead inside her Manhattan townhouse.

Many doubters believe it was murder made to look like a drug overdose.

Prior to her death, Kilgallen told friends she was about to break the biggest story of her career.

Instead it ended up costing her her life.

The Mysterious Death Of Karyn Kupcinet

August 10, 2015

motorcade
Karyn Kupcinet was a little known actress and daughter of a Chicago reporter and television host.

Her death by strangulation occurred in West Hollywood one week after the Kennedy assassination took place.

Whether her demise was in part due to the President’s shooting is pure speculation. There is even concern that the coroner’s ruling for cause of death could be inaccurate because he was known to be an alcoholic.

The dead actress, who had gotten an abortion in Mexico that past July, left a strange note which read: “I’m no good. I’m not really that pretty. My figure’s fat and will never be the way my mother wants it. Why must I be so alone. What’s the use of living with nothing to believe in? There’s nothing only phony motives, selfish egoists, selfless people, fat heads and drunks and I want out. I like President Kennedy, Bertrand Russell, Theodore Reiks, Peter O’Toole, Sydney J. Harris, Albert Finney.”

Both her actor boyfriend and her downstairs neighbor were considered one-time suspects but no charges were ever brought
against them.

JFK conspiracy theorists think maybe the Chicago mob had been involved as warning to her famous father.

Her death remains unsolved today.

Googling Google: It’s One Wealthy Technology Company

August 9, 2015

cash doodle
Google started in 1998 and has its headquarters in Mountain View, California.

On NASDAQ, it’s trading at over $630 per share.

On Facebook, it has over 188 million ‘likes’.

On Twitter, it has over 12 million followers.

Its subsidiaries include YouTube, Nest Labs, Songza, Feedburner, BufferBox, AdMob and numerous other companies which appear to be extensions of the original Google.

Google is on the Forbes World’s most valuable brands list.

In net worth, Google has around $365 billion dollars in assets.

Not to be confused with Googol which is the number one followed by one hundred zeros.

Now that’s alot of zeros.