Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Fire The Bums!

It’s time to fire the bums. That’s right! The Cleveland Indians need a complete overhaul. Fire the manager, the general-manager, and the owner, as my father would say.

I feel that I have the right to say this. After all, the present owner’s fortune actually started at my family’s house. They made their fortune with cable television. So why does the house I grew up in claim to be the starting point. Well, we were the very first house to be wired for cable television, back in the sixties. I always knew that we were one of the first homes to have cable television in our neighborhood (Shaker Heights, Ohio), but it wasn’t until almost thirty years later that I found out we were the first.

Our cable went out, and a crew came to fix the problem.

They came upon a dilemma. The cable was not strung across the backyard, and drilled through a wall, into the home. No! They found that the cable had been tunneled under the garage, under the driveway, and came into the home through the basement. It was then thread up throughout the home inside the interior of two foot thick brick walls. The cable itself was of a type that the crew had never seen before. It was as if a car mechanic had someone drive a 1914 Model T into his shop, and said, “Can you fix this?”

Word got out fast, and before we knew it, there were at least thirty cable trucks parked all the way down our street. It was amazing. They all came to see the infamous house. They were crawling over the place like ants. “Come look at this!”—“Check this out!”—was the banter throughout the house.

The company was called Telerama, when we first got cable. Basically all it did was to add the two UHF stations to the dial of thirteen numbers. The best part was that we also got a CBC station from London Ontario. I loved it, because I grew up watching Hockey Night in Canada. The best part was that in Canada, they didn’t censor movies. Back in the sixties, by the time a newer movie made it to television, one third of it would be left on the editor’s floor. On late night, I sometimes even got to see flesh. Years later they added WOR TV, from New York, where I got the Ranger’s games. Also, I was raised watching the WOR TV 4 o’clock movie (I owe them a debt).

My father got it, because when the Cleveland Browns played a home game, Telerama would pick up a station from Erie, Pennsylvania or Sandusky, Ohio, that would be outside of the banned area. Remember, the NFL has always had strict rules about showing home games, unless it is a sell-out. All the kids in the neighborhood would come to our house to watch the games.

The folks that started this operation eventually moved on to New York City and renamed it Viacom Cablevision. The family went on to make a gazillion dollars. So what do gazillionaires do with all their money? They buy sports teams. Now the Cleveland Indians have another, in a long line, of inept owners (with the exception of Dick Jacobs). It is only an ego massaging exercise for them. It’s too bad they don’t run the team the way they did their cable company.

But, the fact is, they don’t need to run this team. Let’s find a new owner and fire the bums!

By the way, the crew decided to string new wiring, the way they do it with all the other houses in America. And guess what? It turned out that the old system worked better!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Oh That Crazy Dick!

Former vice president Dick Cheney announced yesterday the formation of a new wing of the Republican Party. In this new move, he has sided with Rush Limbaugh, in a coalition which they intend to name, “the Brown Shirts.”

In their first meeting, several hecklers were promptly ejected by force. Security was happy to say that a few of the agitators had departed with gashed heads. Only seventy people were in attendance at this first meeting, but Rush said that, “We expect our numbers to grow. We are expecting around 130 at our second meeting.”

Cheney, when asked about the role of this new wing said, “The Republican Party needs to evolve from an extremist-centrist party to one with unquestioned leaders. The Brown Shirts are being formed, because the centrists are no longer needed for the original purpose of the party. Our role will be the rightful acquisition of political power.”

When asked the same question, Rush Limbaugh said, “I’m on board, because I’ve always been into pseudo-military titles, which we intend to bestow on our members. As for me, I’m hoping for The Grandest Most Privatistic Hypertrophied Proponent of the Unconscionable, or if I can’t get that, then Your Highness will do.”

“The old ways of doing things are over,” Cheney added. “A political party, in today’s world, needs to inflict more subtle terror and obedience than was needed during the prior eight years. Our new motto will be: Terror must be broken by terror.”

Asked about how this could effect the nation as a whole, the former vice-president said, “To start with, our nation needs to become a nation of snoops, with the sole purpose of keeping an eye on others in their ‘areas’ and report to us if something is amiss. Don’t forget that the terrorists are still probably already amongst us.”

When pressed on this issue, Cheney added that, “Actually what we really need is leadership that would eventually become a dictatorship. The country requires one person and one party to be in control of the nation and our climate of fear. The Brown Shirt wing of the Republican Party is the only one that can rouse America’s youth to a passionate militant love for their Fatherland, I mean their homeland. Rush has been advocating for years, that our education system needs to be re-organized on the lines of narrow nationalism and intolerance. I think he has something there.”

Rush went on to expound on this theme, when he said, “In our America, men and women will look well dressed and have pride of appearance and a regard for cleanliness, which will fill the world with admiration.”

When a heckler appeared and shouted, “but beneath a spotless suit of clothes and a white collar there is nothing but abject poverty crying out for retribution,” Dick Cheney pulled out a gun and shot him in the face.