Kids These Days

Boston kids born in the twenty-first century take it for granted that, in the words of Mick Jagger at a Rolling Stones concert at Fenway Park in 2004, “Boston is a championship city.”

Those of us who’ve been around a little longer don’t take these things for granted. So an occasional reminder just before the start of another NFL season seems appropriate.


The Boys Are Back In Town


I went to Summer camp this morning, in Foxborough MA, with about 10,000 other New England Patriots fan(atic)s.  

It was very hot, and free, and absolutely wonderful to see football back for another season. 

And Tom Brady was already in his teammates' faces to push harder. He even chewed out a ball boy for getting in his way.  

A WBZ-TV reporter interviewed me on camera about my expectations for the team during TB12's four-game regular season suspension. 

"3-1" I replied.  No hesitation.

It's on... 


Knowing When


After the Primary debates ceased to be fun anymore and I suspended my political campaign, I've been getting more and more excited about the upcoming NFL season.

Outside of rooting for my fellow Penn State alum Christian Hackenberg to get drafted by a decent team tonight, I care as much about the NFL Draft as I do about fantasy football. Which is zero.

With the almost-certainty of Jimmy Garoppolo playing quarterback for the New England Patriots while Tom Brady serves his four game regular season suspension, I can't wait for the new season to start.


NFL training camps will open in about ninety days, just after the Republican convention in Cleveland. TB12 will only have played his first couple of regular season games and we will have a good idea of whether or not this will be the "Fuck You" season that Patriots fans had hoped for last year, one that ends with another Super Bowl victory.

And not long after Brady returns from his suspension, we will finally know whether the next President of the United States will be Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. 

As it was for me during the late 1960s, I am once again blessed to live in interesting times.

Good Night Sibby Sisti, Wherever You Are...


When Brendan Boyd and I wrote The Great American Baseball Card Flipping, Trading And Bubblegum Book, we needed some kind of coda at the end - something in line with the smartass tone we'd created, mixed with equal measures of snark and nostalgia. Sibby Sisti replaced Mrs Calabash in the old Jimmy Durante exit line, and just like that, we had our coda and the book rode off into the sunset.

But we never expected that line to stick in so many readers' minds, to the point where it still comes back in comments and reviews of the book, especially since it was re-issued as a facsimile edition Kindle Book in 2015.

The other thing that's come back is the question about whether/when a sequel to the original book will appear. The answer to that question is "soon, I hope". Work is in fact under way on a sequel that will apply the same blend of snark and nostalgia in the original book to cards of the Sixties, Seventies and Eighties, and will include a first-hand take on the ways in which the business of baseball cards has changed - for better and for worse.  

Stay tuned...