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George Takei Speaks November 4, 2010

Posted by Edward von Bear in News.
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My Opinion Of The All Star Game Coming To St. Louis July 13, 2009

Posted by Edward von Bear in Crime, Ducks, Entertainment, Food, History, Man Laws, News, Sex, Sports.
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Well, I am not as eager as the Tax Man, it seems.

The tax is routinely applied on a prorated basis to visiting ballplayers and other professional athletes who stop in St. Louis.

All of the National League teams that regularly play the Cardinals have accounts with the collector’s office.

Since 2003, the city has booked more than $7 million in taxes from Major League Baseball players, money that goes to the school district, police department and other city services {but is mostly wasted-ed.}.

Tax Collector Gregory F.X. Daly hasn’t stopped at ballplayers’ salaries, though. Last year, Daly sued former Cardinals broadcaster Wayne Hagin — now the radio voice of the New York Mets — for an unpaid earnings tax bill of $4,600, including interest and penalties.

This summer, Daly has set his sights on All-Star bonuses. It’s hardly a windfall, but even 1 percent of a Major League bonus is more than what the city will withhold in an entire year from smaller paychecks.

Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols can make at least $50,000 if he’s picked by fans to play in the game. Carlos Zambrano, the Chicago Cubs hard-throwing, hot-tempered right-hander, will clear an extra $75,000 if he’s an All-Star. Mets ace Johan Santana has a $100,000 All-Star bonus.

“And we may allow them to keep some of the money they make for appearing in this game,” said some deputy douchebag.

I may have edited that last sentence.

Seriously, isn’t this idiotic?

For a restorative, I bring you some epic Cubs FAIL (BIRM).


Some Blatant Homerism Here April 20, 2009

Posted by Edward von Bear in Ducks, Entertainment, Food, Heroes, History, Sports.
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One of the highlights every year in St. Louis for Opening Day is the parade of the players and the introduction of the living Hall of Famers. Sadly, the greatest Cardinal of them all, Stan Musial, is pushing 90, and has missed several recent events due to failing health. But he was at this year’s Opening Day, even though the weather was terrible, and as many people can sense, the opportunities to see him are diminishing by the day.

To me, this photo, courtesy of the St. Louis Post-Disptach’s Chris Lee, of Albert Pujols adjusting Mr. Musial’s collar is one of the most touching sports-related photos I have seen in a while. Yes, I know athletes are spoiled, self-centered, and difficult to deal with. But seeing one of the best players in the game today helping out one of the best players ever, is impressive.




“I’ll Never Take The Birds Off My Chest. When I Take Them Off, That’s My Last Day In Baseball.” October 8, 2008

Posted by Edward von Bear in News, Personal Experiences, Sports.
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Late last night, George Kissell, who had been affiliated with the St. Louis Cardinals for almost seven decades, died from injuries suffered in a car accident in Florida. He was famous for teaching the basebal fundamentals to players in Spring Training, and was beloved by every spoiled millionaire athlete he ever encountered. His accomplishments are the stuff of legends:

He turned a pitcher named Ken Boyer into a third baseman who went on to win an MVP award. Kissell taught Andy Van Slyke to play the outfield and John Mabry to play the infield, and he shepherded Joe Torre in his shift from catcher to third base. He once told a young Anthony “Tony” La Russa that he was better suited to be a major-league manager than a major-league player. In 1989, Kissell was featured in a Sports Illustrated article titled “The College of Cardinals.” He was described as the dean.

Hall of Fame manager Sparky Anderson, a protégé of Kissell’s, once described Kissell as “the greatest baseball fundamentalist I have ever known.”

He also described him as the “smartest man in baseball.”

“I learned more baseball from George Kissell than from anyone else in my life,” Torre told the St. Petersburg Times in 1997. Torre won four World Series titles as manager of the New York Yankees, and in his autobiography he called Kissell his greatest teacher. He told the paper: “A lot of people can play the game, but not as many people can teach the game. And George, to me, was the ultimate. Is the ultimate.”

To teach Torre how to play third, Kissell had Torre stand a body’s length away from the outfield wall and face it. Kissell would then stand behind Torre and fire baseballs at the wall. Torre improved his reaction by fielding the ricochets. Mabry tells a similar story of what he called “Kissell drills.” Kissell, almost half the size of his pupils but twice as intense, ambled out to Mabry at third base and took away the infielder’s glove.

He then told Mabry to get on his knees to field grounders.

“Basically, he just took me out there and beat me to death with a fungo,” Mabry joked. “I’d be on my knees just looking at the ball coming off the bat — with no glove.”

How beloved was Kissell by the spoiled millionaires he taught every day? The love was so great, the team dedicated their Spring Training locker room to him in 2005. At the ceremony he said the following:

“I’ve always been known as a hard-nosed guy, but today you really touched me to the heart,” Kissell told the players that morning in February 2005. “I’ll never take the birds off my chest. When I take them off, that’s my last day in baseball.”

On a personal level, I was privileged back in college to spend some time one afternoon with Mr. Kissell. His joie de vivre, along with his love and knowledge of the game floored me. He was warm, intelligent, and could distill the nuances of fielding a bunt better than anybody I ever knew or met.

Rest In Peace, Mr. Kissell.

25 Years Ago Today… April 29, 2008

Posted by BrewFan in Crime, Ducks, Politics.
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A baseball classic, dedicated to mesablue.

(NSFW in a Paul Anka kinda way (no sex, just vulgarity))