Wednesday, June 19, 2013

At the Table With...Baseball Legends

We’ve all heard the obligatory conversation starter before: “If you could have dinner with an influential person, who would it be and why?” Ah, the sounds of a high school history class…except without all the snoring and with only half the amount of drool.

Believe me, I’m not asking you to relive it with me because, seriously, those conversations usually turned out to be as exciting as a Florida Marlins home game.

Personally, I always thought it’d be more interesting to think about what you’d actually say to these people as they were huddled around your kitchen table. What would you serve them? What in the hell would they say to you?

Ok, so maybe I think about pointless stuff a little too much. But I only do it so you, the faithful readers, don’t have to.

I’m a baseball guy, so let me share with you the top five ballplayers throughout history that I’d dine with. But I’ll even take it the extra mile for you. I’ll let you in on our conversations.

5. Alex Rodriguez
The Meal: An assorted tray of creams, jellies, and exotic antler sprays
The Conversation: 
CG: I’m glad you decided to stop by, A-Rod. Hey, you tired of that name yet? I know I am.
A-Rod: Big time. Thinking about starting a movement to change it. Maybe something like #50Cent_aur or #Lil_Shrink_Rod would work. Gain a little street cred , you know?
CG: No. I don't. But speaking of do you see the whole Biogenesis thing shaking out?
A-Rod: Does it really matter? There's a pretty good chance I nailed Madonna. 
CG: What does that have to do with anything? I mean, you're facing a pretty stiff suspension.
A-Rod: You said stiff. 
CG: Yes, Mr. Centaur, I did. Try to stay with me here. Don't you think this scandal will leave fans with a pretty grim outlook on your entire career?
A-Rod: Once again, the Madonna thing. Plus, don't tell Cashman but I'm about to cash his ass out over the next four years. I don't even have to play. I can just sit back, visualize the next six posters I'll have printed with my head attached to the body of a mythological creature, and collect my millions.
CG: Weird. Very weird. But hard to argue with you.
A-Rod: You know, you're starting to sound a lot like Bud Selig.
CG: Ok, I think this dinner's over.

4. Joe DiMaggio
The Meal: Veal Parmigiana and a pack of Marlboro Reds
The Conversation:
CG: Joe, I’ll always be in awe of your 56-game hitting streak. How’d you deal with the pressure?
Joe D: Trust me, it was easier than being married to Marilyn.
CG: High maintenance?
Joe D: You don’t know the half of it.
CG: Was it worth all the trouble?
Joe D: NO!!!  Well, yes.
CG: Shocking.

3. Pete Rose
The Meal: Bread and water
The Conversation:
CG: Sorry about the skimpy meal, Mr. Rose. You know, economy’s not all too good these days.
Rose: Don’t mention it. Besides, it happens to be one of my favorites. I used to refer to it as the after-parlay special back in Cincy.
CG: Sounds, um, healthy. Speaking of health, what’s your take on the whole Biogenesis scandal?
Rose: I’d be willing to bet more than half the league was using performance enhancers.
CG: Uh, are you sure you wouldn’t like to rephrase that last statement?
Rose: Why?
CG: Never mind….So how 'bout those Phillies?

2. Ty Cobb
The Meal: Fried chicken, collards, biscuits, and gravy
The Conversation:
CG: It’s an honor to have you, Mr. Cobb. I’m a huge fan. I celebrate your entire body of work.
Ty: I don’t know where you think this dinner is headed, boy, but you best leave my body out of it.
CG: What?
Ty: You know what I’m gettin’ at, you yella-bellied pretty boy.
CG: Actually, I don’t.
Ty: Look, just eat your damn chicken and zip your lip.
CG: …
Ty: That’s better. Now finish all your vegetables before I sharpen my spikes on that big old nose of yourn.
CG: Mr. Cobb, it’s been real.

1. Yogi Berra
The Meal: A bowl of Cap’n Crunch
The Conversation:
CG: Boy am I glad to be sitting here with you, Yogi…a man known for his dialogue.
Yogi: Well, they say a man’s dialogue is his treasure.
CG: Who says that?
Yogi: Well, it ain’t us, so it must be them.
CG: Of course it ain’t us, but who is “them?”
Yogi: All the people who think a man’s dialogue is his treasure.
CG: But I never heard anyone ever say that.
Yogi: What do you mean? I just said it two minutes ago.
CG: Are you sure you weren’t just reading random stuff off the back of the cereal box?
Yogi: Uhhh….ummm…It ain’t over till it’s over!
CG: What the…? Oh, forget it. Where’s Ty Cobb when you need him?

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