"The big question around the region (Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Pa) the last few days has been just how long Derek Jeter will be hanging around PNC Field, getting that surgically repaired ankle back in shape," make return to N.Y. Yankee's in the Bronx. (The Scranton Times-Tribune, "Getting Better," Commentary by by Donnie Collins, July 9, 2013, P.B-1)
On Sunday, July 7, 2013, a co-worker/friend Joe H. called in order to let me know that his niece's boyfriend, Mr. Vaughan Kemp, 24, was shot dead during a weekend party, as fireworks exploded on Grant St., City of Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Joe H. informed me that he'd likely attend Mr. Kemp's funeral sometime before the weekend. I cannot deny the wise-words of popular sports columnist, Mr. Donnie Collins (noted above), and all the regional focus upon the health of revered Yankee shortstop, Derek's Jeter's ankle, and how long the super-star shall re-hab with minor league Railriders. One cynic might suppose as Rome waged multi-front war in the eastern Mediterranean basin, there were probably quite a few Empire Sport-Fans concerned about the health of Roman star-quality gladiators, impressed into duty, similar to what almost happened to defiant heavyweight boxer, Mr. Muhammed Ali. Indeed, like many area MLB-loyalists, I hoped the Yankee-brass would not rush Derek Jeter back home to play in New York City, stay in Lackawanna County for another game or two.
Yesterday (7/29/'13), the Scranton Times-Tribune headline featured "Chaos grips Egypt," and directly alongside the A.P. article was a column about Derek Jeter, on assignment at PNC Field. In one (1)-inch letters, Mr. Jeter was described as a "SOCIAL BUTTERFLY," and I could not help think about the Wilkes-Barre dead-man, Vaughan Kemp. I learned from my pal Joe that Kemp was a pretty nice fellow most of the time, he interceded for those weaker & being bullied in a very unpleasant neighborhood. Not exactly a "social butterfly," but the shots that hit Kemp stung much worse worse than a bee, and billions of U.S. dollars are on the Egyptian "chaos" where 54 supporters of President Morsi were killed by "security forces." The Wilkes-Barre Police Department said "all people who were at the scene of the Kemp shooting and party were identified and interviewed, though no suspects were in custody as of Sunday afternoon." Too bad Vaughan Kemp's killers did not go to PNC Field on Sunday and watch SS Derek Jeter rehabilitate his ankle, before he returned to the domesticated Bronx streets.
Just fifteen years ago, I had near sexual impulses to attend Baltimore Oriole baseball games at Camden Yards. On Sunday, I spoke about such passion for a return to Baltimore with my pleasant Taylor Borough neighbor, Jim. Like a typical old-Boomer, lost in past, I spoke about 1979, and buying a "scalper" ticket for the 6th game of the World Series, pitting the Orioles and Omar Moreno's Pittsburgh Pirates. During Jimmy Carter's last presidential days, the scalper ticket cost merely $50.00, and I sat alone just a couple rows behind the Oriole dug-out. O yea -- like columnist Donnie Collin's mentioned above, ALL I CARED ABOUT was pitcher Jim Palmer's ability to mow down the Pirates, become champions. To hell with rising gasoline cost at pumps, radicals' seizure of hostages in Iran, one a Scranton local, Olyphant native, Michael Metrinko. I had a dockworker job at Roadway Express, and it was party-time in Baltimore, 33rd Street, who cared about cartels & Khomeini?
Boring my neighbor Jim to death, beyond reason & civility, I continued yapping, said, "Yup, Jim Palmer and the Birds lost the 6th game very ugly, and Pittsburgh won the World Series!" Jim was quite happy that my depressing story was over. He and two sons were on way to PNC Field, they had three (3) tickets purchased from "a good buddy" who sold the trio for "only $125.00." Jim was ecstatic, kids would see Derek Jeter play ball -- he worked at P&G Mehoopany plant, made over $17.00 an hour, did lots of overtime, unlike me, he kept pace with car & house mortgage payments. Before leaving for the ballgame, Jim explained how he almost opted for attendance at the (same day) Kid Rock, Uncle Cracker, and Kool & Gand concert, staged less than a mile uphill from PNC Field, a very scenic outdoor pavilion. Jim said, "my decision was a no-brainer, Chuck, and kids ain't into Kid Rock stuff anymore." We shook hands, bid adieu, Jim mentioned he's "at least glad to know Jim Palmer wasn't a wuss, didn't hang-up-cleats, and started doing profitable Hanes underwear commercials." My, there must be life after MLB and Arab Springs, I replied, as Jim's family drove away.
In this morning Scranton Times-Tribune (July 9) the front page covered a story about a Scranton CVS store that was hit by armed robbery. Reportedly, two men covered in black entered the CVS at 2:15 A.M. Scranton cops said the robbers "demanded Oxycontin, Dilaudid," and a few other prescription drug 'goodies.' Quite a Bread & Circus fan since Ike's days, I recalled the film "Lenny," luscious actress Valerie Perrine, and how comedian Lenny Bruce loved Dilaudid. In contrast to Mr. Bruce's addiction & clever drug-acquisition techniques, Scranton Times-Tribune described those who knocked-over the CVS store as a "drug-hungry duo and pill thieves." Ouch -- was I reading The Taliban Morning Gazette? To his credit, Yankee SS Derek Jeter stays off even popular "Performance Enhancing Drugs," and his ankle condition allegedly IMPROVES day by day.
I am uncertain about everywhere on American scene, but my local world is getting very weird. I experience no more desires to depart madness and attend unaffordable Oriole games at Camden Yards. Doubtless, I'd do myself and the Scranton economy a financial favor by watching Derek Jeter play baseball at PNC Field, Moosic, Pa. Such is one activity where a workingman like me can perform civic-duty, buy hot dogs and outrageously over-priced cups of beer and maybe a famous slice of Revello's Pizza. One must support the local Chapter of United Bread & Circuses Against Super-Star Murder! I am very pleased neighbor Jim and family went to see Derek Jeter, and my friend Joe H. shall view the slain Vaughan Kemp's body at a Wilkes-Barre corpse-house later this week. I am confident the Egyptian political chaos shall calm down, and wish they soon get another US approved dictator, before our troops must move in.
Scranton Times-Tribune columnist Donnie Collins is very correct, on-target. Indeed, I do crave "Bread & Circuses," and in fact, there's evidence of green tomatoes popping on my seven (7) plants growing in backyard. I trust there are no tomato-hungry "duos" in Taylor tonight, and my family harvest shall be safe. I feel very good about myself tonight, and before too long I hope the Baltimore Orioles make a hostile move on the NY Yankees, and win the American League Pennant, November 2013, when it's too cold and the nation's eyes are on football. In fact, I feel so content this evening, I shall send an email with a juicy attachment to my Atlanta, Georgia friend, Professor Gary Corseri. Let me explain? Mr. Corseri's quite concerned about the Egyptian chaos, but he is somewhat flawed (retro) and does not give a hoot about MLB. However, I know he's a film fan, he likes watching TCM, and sort of like Tolstoy's Count Vronsky, Gary appreciates observing wholesome female physiques.