Friday, March 7, 2008

I Heart Jim Bouton

Just finished reading the baseball classic Ball Four by Jim Bouton, which left me helpless with laughter while reading it on the subway, in bed, etc. -- prompting some people to ask what was so funny. They actually made a sitcom of this in 1976. Guess who played the Jim Bouton character -- Jim Bouton! I love his attitude in the book and his take on timeless baseball issues like pitchers intentionally hitting batters (he's against it because you can't control pitches that precisely and might end a guy's career or kill him). It wasn't until the final pages written years later that I finaly disagreed with a single thing he said. (Bouton thinks what Pete Rose did should be forgiven because gambling is an addiction.) Whats your favorite anecdote? I love the one about popcorn, an uncircumsized penis and a "terrible" sexually transmitted disease. And Bouton, if you're out there, I've got a ticke for you to attend Old Timer's Day. If you wait for a Yankees invitation, it'll never come and you belong in the bleachers anyway.


priv8pete said...

There's too much to love to try and pick a favorite. I love all the Mickey Mantle stories, the nicknames (Clank, The Fat Kid, Capital Punishment, etc.), the numerous pranks, and Mike Marshall's senior thesis title: Baseball is an Ass.

Michael in New York said...

Yes indeedy, jam-packed with anecdotes too many to remember on just one read. It must be read again and again, like the Bible or Lord of the Rings.

Michael in New York said...

The Bible is obviously more important but The Lord of Rings has better action scenes. Moses holding up his arms? Snoresville compared to Gimli and Legolas competing on number of kills at Helm's Deep.