Thursday, July 17, 2008

Invasion of the Crooners!

Although I know our base ball heroes need a restorative pause from hurling and swatting during the long season, I wish the tycoons and robber-barons who own the squads would enjoy a similar respite.

But no! These bean-counters see a gap in the ball-playing schedule as an opportunity to invite any musical revue, burlesque show or other “entertainment” spectacle into our hallowed ball-parks, all in the name of putting a few more nickels in their vest pockets.

Last night, noted “rag time” artist "Wee Willie" Joel took his position in center-field of the Metropolitans’ coliseum, wielding a piano instead of a glove. His bar-room ballads filled the air that should instead be ringing with hoots and huzzahs from loyal rooters. Worse, next month the Tin Pan Ally crooner Neil “Sparkles” Diamond will be warbling his ditties on the fine turf of the park by the Fens.

Now, I have no beef against a cheerful tune or even a sing-along amongst gentlemen -- but I feel these activities are best confined to the taverns and men’s clubs outside the ball-grounds. The diamond is a sacred polygon, laid out for gallant men in flannel to prove their skill in the ancient arts of stick and ball. (Not to mention the fact that these interloping canaries tend to attract an unseemly crowd of reefer-heads, tarts and delinquents.)

I’d rather the grandstands remain peopled with honorable rooters, upstanding ladies, and lads and lasses partaking of our noble past-time. Base ball can’t return quickly enough for my tastes.

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