Zsa Zsa Gets The Bird

By Larry Teren
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It is possible to argue that Zsa Zsa Gabor was to the 1950s and 60s what Paris Hilton and her ilk are today. Not concidental, Zsa Zsa was once married for a few years in the 1940’s to Paris’ great-grandfather Conrad Hilton, the founder of the fabulously successful Hilton Hotel chain. Conrad, the second of Zsa Zsa’s nine husbands, was thirty years older than her.

Zsa Zsa Gabor , still alive at the age of 95 as of November 2012,zsazsagabor_3
made a career of basically playing herself in several movies and countless television shows. Even though she played the blonde buxom bombshell on screen, in the real world she was outspoken for several causes and confident of her actions.

Zsa Zsa Gabor loved animals and when her Bel Air home burnt to the ground while she was performing on the road, all she was concerned about was that her several dogs were able to escape to safety. She mentioned in her 1991 autobiography two memorable events involving birds. Continue reading “Zsa Zsa Gets The Bird”

Mule Headed Season

By Larry Teren

What separates us human beings from the animals is the ability to think, right? Animals may do things by habit or instinct but we, the superior kind, are able to make logical decisions and act accordingly. Or do we? Take these examples of stubbornness.
Continue reading “Mule Headed Season”

Stress Test

By Larry Teren

Dear Diary,

Just between you and me, I laugh at those celebrities who brag about going to psychiatrists. It’s like a birthright for them. Almost as if it is one of the prerequisites in order to become famous in show business. Me- I don’t need a shrink. I self-analyze, right?

Remember when I wrote that Ma said I needed to go to anger management class? I told her that I needed to go to impatience management class instead but that I just didn’t have the time to do it. Well, now I realize it isn’t impatience I suffer either- it’s stress.
Continue reading “Stress Test”

Aging Report

By Larry Teren

Most of us who get involved with the running of a business understand what an aging report is. An aging report is a good barometer of a business’ health and ability to stand on its own two feet. This story, however, is not about business but a report on the aging of a couple of humans.
Continue reading “Aging Report”

The Historic Dateline of Baseball in the first half of the Twenty-First Century

By Larry Teren

Dateline- November, 2020 – Major League Baseball Owners vote to no longer charge ticket admission to the games. Two teams- the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox- are the only ones to oppose. The reason for the decision is that attendance has been shrinking every year to a league-wide average of 8,000 per game.

One anonymous official in the Commissioner’s office said, “few Blacks and Muslims have any interest in the game. The Indian immigrants who fled to the US after Pakistan invaded India and took over are only interested in Cricket. The White population has been shrinking ever since the 2012 Presidential Elections. Hispanics are ardent followers of the sport but cannot afford the typical $100 per game cost of a ticket.”

The owners are hoping that giving away the tickets will get people to come to the game and make it look like the players are not playing just for a television audience. Owners hope to make up the difference in the lost revenue by selling higher priced concessions. Beer will now cost $10 a ten ounce cup, hot dogs- $7 a pup. Fans will not be allowed to bring any food or drink into the ballparks and will be thoroughly checked.

Some of the athletes have been complaining that when playing in front of near empty ballparks, it is hard to tell if they are the home or visiting team. Rocky Peterson is quoted as saying, “hey as long as they pay me my $25 million a year contract, they can do whatever they want. If it means having more fans in the stands- great!” Alberto Zapata, a Cuban defector and recently signed to a three year, $47 million contract said, “Espero que un día encontrar mi certificado de nacimiento y obtener mi tarjeta verde.”

January, 2030- Now that the new Congress is in place, the majority Green Party members of the House of Representatives rush through a bill that outlaws the cutting down of trees for anything unessential. On the list are baseball bats. MLB immediately approves the use of aluminum bats for the first time.

November, 2030- The commissioner’s office is assessing the changes that will be needed to offset the effects of the use of aluminum bats the season that just passed. Seven pitchers are hit by line drives with five dying from the results. One expires immediately on the mound although the batter is ruled out because the ball stayed lodged in the pitcher’s teeth even as he lay limp on the ground.

January, 2030- A consensus of MLB owner’s have agreed to allow pitchers to be replaced by pitching machines, the very type used by kids all over America taking batting practice. In order to placate the players’ union from the loss of up to a dozen men on a squad, teams may now rotate offensive and defensive players during the game at will. Rosters will stay at 25.

The pitching coach will control the pitching machine. He will be able to select from a choice of curve ball, fast ball, slider, screwball and ‘surprise’ while also programming the device to vary the speed and to take into account whether the batter is a lefty or right-handed.

In a related vote, the Cy Young Award will now go the player with the most hits in each league.

November, 2031- After assessing play with the use of the pitching machine, MLB owners have now decided to outlaw bunts as there is no one on the mound to come rushing in to pick up a dribbler. Some owners argue to allow a ninth human to stand next to the machine as the designated fielder but are overruled.

November, 2035- MLB owners vote to point a laser decoder to home plate to determine if the pitch is in the strike zone. Balls will be sprayed with a special phosphorous substance to aid in detection by the laser beam. The home plate umpire will signal the call after reading the display on his hand-held device. Umpires will still decide if a runner is safe at home or if a pitch is batted fair or foul, both subject to instant replay overrule.

December, 2040 – MLB owners vote to put all teams into the playoffs regardless of record. When asked why, the commissioner points out that they did a marketing study and found out that fans care about only two things- statistics and if their team gets into the post season. By playing a full season and being eligible for the post season regardless of record, this satisfies everyone. Fans can keep on comparing batting statistics of players against each other and be comfortably aware that their team makes the playoffs.

All teams with losing records play one game runoffs against each other in each league until there is only one team left. That team will play the wild card winner with the worst winning record among the three wild card winners. None of the regular best-of-five post season matches will begin until one below-.500 team winner is determined. There is a possibility that the regular playoff matches will not start until the third week of October, weather permitting.

December, 2042- After two years of postponing several playoff games due to bad weather, MLB owners have voted to play all post-season games in domed stadiums. It will mean that most participants will not have their fan base show up in person to watch their heroes. To make it fair, if a team has a domed stadium, they must play their opponents in a third-party location.

February, 2045- Due to its scarcity, the congressional majority Green Party has outlawed the use of aluminum in all but essential products. MLB owners immediately lock out all ballplayers from showing up to Spring Training pending how to resolve the bat issue.

February, 2050- Now that the Republican coalition of the White minority along with the newly chartered 51st and 52nd states of Cuba and the Dominican Republic have taken back control of the House of Representatives, they immediately remove the ban on tree cutting for recreational purposes. MLB owners are contemplating ending the lockout and are now scouting Japan for pitchers.

Austin City Limits

By Larry Teren

I’m no Charles Dickens, but I, too, have a Tale of Two Cities. My cities also have experienced the best of times as well as the worst of times. Now, if I can only get my stories serialized in a magazine like good old Charlie boy. Continue reading “Austin City Limits”

A House Divided

A House Divided

By Larry Teren

I generally try to avoid any discussion of politics in this blog site. There are two things, however, that I noticed in the last couple of days that I cannot leave alone. One is a news analyst on election night using the expression “a house divided” and the other is an idiotic article written by a smug generation x-er on a left coast print media website. Continue reading “A House Divided”

Rat Fink

Rat Fink

By Larry Teren

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If you are baby boomer, certain words and expressions conjure up an immediate association that those of other age groups cannot relate. Take for example, a very once-popular, one-word adjective that for a short time in the early 1960’s conveyed a feeling of disgust, one person to another. And that word is – rat fink!! And, of course, for any of us hatched in the 1950’s and shaped in the 1960’s, the word is associated with a famous parody song by the master of all masters- Allan Sherman. Anyone interested in hearing this melodious ingenious musical piece can click here. For the sake of accuracy, it should be noted that although it is spelled as two distinct words, it is pronounced rushed together in order to stress the significance of its usage, such as you ratfink bastard, you.      Continue reading “Rat Fink”

I Got (Loga)Rithm

By Larry Teren

Recently a Facebook friend posted that his father had celebrated his 75th birthday and wanted to give others who know him a chance to send greetings. You know that old expression, “a friend of a friend is my friend”. I guess through magic, Facebook is able to let the father see whatever greetings the son swaps with his friends.

What made this birthday announcement more than ordinary is that my friend’s father is my high school chemistry teacher from 40 or so years ago (yeah, do the math). Being forced to think back so long ago causes me to remember only a handful of incidents. (Doing the same math, I did not realize that the teacher was so young at that time because he had prematurely gray hair and acted, well- so mature.)

I do recall that Chemistry was one of the classes in which I got a better grade than others I was forced to take against my will. Those included English, Trigonometry and Home Room. I was better at Chemistry for two reasons: 1) our teacher was hip and fun to hang around. 2) my classmates were not better at understanding it than I was so the grading curve was a little lower. Take that Arthur Lafler. (If you have to ask who he is, I quit.)

There are three memories that I associate with our beloved Chemistry teacher. Continue reading “I Got (Loga)Rithm”