Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Barry, The Babe and Barley

If you listen to WFAN or peruse the Letters to the Sports Editors in our local dailies, then you are no doubt familiar with the sports intellect of Jim Burns, aka "Jim on Long Island." Jim has been good enough to share his original prose with us. So, without further ado.....

"Barry, The Babe and Barley" by James H. Burns

Author's Note: The attempt by some in the media to equate Babe Ruth's beer drinking,during Prohibition, with Barry Bond's alledged use of steroids (and other artifical enhancements), struck me, at first, as ludicrous.

Hall of Famer Joe Morgan, ESPN's national baseball announcer, for example, attempted to explain that both pursuits were originally illegal, but "not against the rules of baseball." Beer, after all, might feel refreshing, but is essentially a depressant,while the various steroids regimes are designed not only to give you the ability to compete at a superior level, but to recover more quickly ,from the rigors of competition.

Bonds' breaking of Hank Aaron's home-run record, however, has prompted me--upon careful reflection, and with a certain degree of admitted shock--to see how many similarities may, in fact, exist, between the illegal aid, and ale....

You can buy beer from a tap, in a bottle, or by the six-pack.
Steroids can help give you a "six-pack."

With beer, it's often tough to have only one.
Steroids users often believe that anything's all right, as long as they've won.

Experienced beer drinkers know to avoid bad hops.
Fielders on steroids may be better at avoiding bad hops.

After a night of beer drinking, your eyes might not be clear.
After using steroids, you might want to use the medical masking agent, Clear.

Drunk drivers who have had too many beers, fear the police giving them a blood test.
Donald Fehr, head of the Players' Union, won't allow checking players for steroids, by blood test.

In recent years, a few beers from Mexico have become quite popular.
A few steroids regimes can only be obtained, illegally imported from Mexico.

Beer drinkers know the value of brewing with a fine grain.
Homer-hitters on steroids know the value of using bats, boned with a fine grain.

More beer is consumed in America's ballparks, than any other beverage.
More steroids have been consumed in the storied shrines of baseball, than in the stadiums of any other sport (except, of course, perhaps, for football....)

Some beer lovers like their booze topped with a nice, foamy head.
Certain steroid regimes can actually alter their users' tops, fomenting an enlarged head.

Bud-Light helped generate even more beer sales, for baseball stadiums and their owners.
"Bud-Light" is what many call the Baseball Commissioner who turned the other cheek to steroids allegations, when the 1990s home run explosion helped team-owners fuel vast ticket, and television rights, sales...

James H. Burns (James H. (Jim) Burns, a writer/actor living in Long Island, New York,has written features for such magazines as GENTLEMAN'S QUARTERLY, ESQUIRE and TWILIGHT ZONE. He can be heard frequently as a guest on radio talk shows, throughout the United States.

No comments: