Favorite Artists

  • Cake
  • Calexico
  • Chet Baker
  • Craig Finn
  • Dave Alvin
  • Eels
  • Elvis Perkins
  • EmmyLou Harris
  • Gerry Mulligan
  • Jackson Browne
  • JJ Cale
  • Joe Henry
  • John Hiatt
  • Maria Callas
  • Mary Gauthier
  • Morphine
  • Neil Young
  • Robert Earl Keen
  • Roddy Woomble
  • Roger Waters
  • Sam Baker
  • Van Morrison
  • Wilco
  • Wynton Marsailles
  • Yo Yo Ma

Saturday, June 30, 2012


For A Dancer

"Keep a fire for the human race
  Let your prayers go drifting into space
  You never know what will be coming down
  Perhaps a better world is drawing near
  And just as easily it could all disappear
  Along with whatever meaning you might have found
  Don't let the uncertainty turn you around
  (the world keeps turning around and around)
  Go on and make a joyful sound."            

Into a dancer you have grown
From a seed somebody else has thrown
Go on ahead and throw some seeds of your own
And somewhere between the time you arrive
And the time you go
May lie a reason you were alive
But you'll never know.                                     For A Dancer- Jackson Browne


I live in one of the most sports-mad areas of the country, Philadelphia. I've been hooked on professional sports since I was about 8 years old. We did not have a TV until I was around that age and one of my earliest memories was when my father put the Notre Dame game on one Saturday afternoon. That was back when ND was IT for Catholics. If you were Catholic, not rooting for ND was tantamount to not worshiping your mother. Not only were we not Catholic, but my father carried a hatred strong dislike for the Irish. Although he was born in England, he was raised just outside of Boston where the influx of Irish invoked the same feelings, I suppose, as the influx of blacks in Detroit. They were "The Other"...we always have to have "The Other" to take the focus off what we are lacking. I married an Irish girl but he never mentioned or indicated to me if he still felt the same way about the Irish.

My brother and I would take a couple of trolleys to go to Shibe Park to watch the Philadelphia Athletics play. Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams and other stars were on the field, and Connie Mack, who owned the A's was in a business suit managing the team on the bench. The Phillies also played in Shibe Park. Although we were A's fans, we also followed the Phils. I remember my sister taking me to a Phils-Brooklyn Dodgers game and there were a lot of black people in the stands, there to see one of the few teams with Negro stars. I wanted to root for the Dodgers but my sister convinced me that I should root for my home team. That sure wasn't true of the black folks. I

My brother and I saw a Chicago White Sox player hit 4 home runs in a double header (we loved double headers), a no hitter and home town hero Bobby Shantz win a lot of games for the A's. And then the team was sold and moved to Kansas City. I think I was 14 and It was my introduction to sports as a business. 

When the A's left town I was forced to shift my rooting to the Phils. I did get to see Willie Mays, Hank Aaron and a lot of terrific National League players, but it wasn't until the 80's that   I felt like the Phils were really my team.

There is a lot to like about sports, both playing and spectating. I won't present any arguments  to justify my love of sports. You either have a love for sports or you don't. Sports is both a passion and a diversion for lots of Philadelphians. I get the passion part, but I don't understand the diversion. In that regard, sports is really no different than the arts. You can be passionate about music or fine art, or ballet, but it isn't considered a diversion by most people. I guess passion/diversion is in the eye of the beholder.

No comments:

Post a Comment