Thursday, February 07, 2008

Thursday's Things

(every Thursday at OOB -- well, MOST Thursdays -- I rant in list fashion)

Things I'd Like To Place On My "Bucket List"

(in reference to the movie, "The Bucket List", in which two old codgers make up a list of things they'd like to do before they "kick the bucket")

1. See a game at Fenway Park. I've been to Wrigley Field, Shea Stadium, the old Municipal Stadium in Cleveland, and even the awful Exhibition Stadium in Toronto. But to see a game at Fenway would be delightful. I wonder if I'd even watch the game, or if I'd just stare at the Green Monster all day.

2. Make a throw from third base to first base. If you've never been on a major league field, you'd be amazed at how far it is from corner bag to corner bag. It looks like a mile away, and whenever I see a third baseman or shortstop make a throw from deep in the hole with accuracy and velocity, I just shake my head. We take it for granted, but that's a long ways away! I'd like to try that throw myself, and see if I can get it anywhere near the first baseman's mitt.

3. Kick a field goal. Whenever I find myself around a football field, even if it's sandlot, or at a high school, I like to stand three yards behind the 50 yard-line and look at how long Tom Dempsey kicked his NFL-record FG against the Lions in 1970. I'd also like to try a FG myself; not 63 yards, but even a 30-yarder would be cool. I'd even try a few old school, straight-on style.

4. Play Oakland Hills golf course. I'm not a big golfer by any means, but how cool would it be to play 18 on the same course as the game's all-time greats? Even if I would shoot about 120.

5. Interview Matt Millen. The entire interview would begin and end with one three-word question, and its initials contain the letters T,F, and W. I'll let you arrange them.

6. Give a pre-game prep talk. I don't know where and to whom, but I have fantasies of roaming a lockerroom before a game, getting players fired up with some gems off my lips. Maybe my alma mater, EMU, would have me? I'll ask football coach Jeff Genyk.

7. Write something, anything, Jim Murray-like. Murray, the late, great LA sportswriter, had some beauties. Two of my favorites: "When a plane lands in Philadelphia, everyone gets on, no one gets off." And "The last time Willie Mays dropped a fly ball, he was wearing a bonnet and shaking a rattle."

8. Re-read "Ball Four." An American classic, if you ask me. Jim Bouton's insider's tale of baseball is maybe the best sports book I've ever read, bar none. And I've read it three or four times already, but would love to do it again. It's got the all-time greatest closing line: "You spend all your life gripping a baseball, then you realize it was the other way around the whole time."

9. Talk to Gordie Howe (or Ted Lindsay, or Johnny Wilson) about Red Wings goalie Terry Sawchuk. I always found Sawchuk fascinating -- maybe because he died so young (age 40), or maybe because you just don't know much about him outside of what he did on the ice. I know there's a biography published, but I'd love to hear about him right out of the mouths of his teammates.

10. Receive a court-length bounce pass from Magic Johnson. And hope I don't blow the lay-up.

Care to share?

1 comment:

Ryan said...

1. Sit on top of the Green Monster.
2. Hit some baseballs at Comerica Park.
3. Catch a real home run ball on the fly during a game.
4. Sit in the Bartman seat.
5. See what the pitcher and catcher talk about on the mound.
6. Compare my hand to Shaq's.
7. Shoot an NBA 3-pointer at the Palace.
8. (Try) to catch a pass from Brett Farve.
9. Put on Hasek's mask.
10. Go to all thirty major league stadiums.