Wednesday, June 30, 2010

"Famous Sportsman"

In the original trailer for the movie "Caddyshack," the voice-over describes Ty Webb as: "A Sportsman who really knows how to score."

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

We don't need no stinkin' Bluetooth

I have seen many women in Center City Philadelphia sporting this method of "hands free" phone use....a hilarious confluence of tech and traditonal garb.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Dove Hunting and Women Hunters

As of July 1st next will only be 2 months until the opening of Dove Season. The Federal Government sets the dates for hunting this migratory bird...which is most challenging to shoot. Doves are very fast,very wary and very agile. At our Hunting Club the Farmer plants several acres of Sunflowers just about this time of Summer. By September 1st...the opening day...the Sunflowers will have bloomed and be fairly dry...just how the Doves like 'em. The field is planted near a tree line and near the tidal river that runs along the edge of our Farm where our Club is located.
Each year,opening day of Dove Season finds a large group of Club Members, guests,sons and daughters ready to engage in some spirited wing-shooting. The day opens with a Barbecue Lunch and a Club Meeting. Then around 2 or 3 p.m. we take to the field. The shooters are positioned at set locations in and around the Sunflowers to optimize safety and coverage. It is generally a hot day so one's gear includes a camo cooler for water and ice. The normal uniform for Doves is camo shorts and shirt and hat. I have featured some examples of same in the posted pictures to demonstrate to the ladies and jangle the purient interest of you other knuckleheads.
After the shooting is over...and we all generally get close to the bag limit of is back to the Clubhouse for ice cold beers and a cleaning session. We will get several men and kids cleaing the days bag...which are then skewered and grilled. Often we will score a bushel of Steamed Crabs from the Delaware bay and have a "Wing & Claw" feast. Freshly shot Dove, grilled over coal and steamed crabs and a frosty keg makes for one damn fine Summer evening.
Last season my son made his first wing shot in the dove field...a fine 25 yard crossing shot with a 20 Guage. This Sportsman was practically levitating with pride.
Also of note, and in relation to the title of this post, are the exploits of a fine Sportswomen. My hunting buddy whom I have referred in prior posts...has a daughter that is an excellent shot and loves to shoot doves. She aquits herself with poise and skill and has dove hunted with us the last 3 seasons. She recently won her age class in a local Sporting Clays Competition and is going to be better with a double gun than both her Dad and this writer combined. Suffice it to say this young lady is not attired like the scantily clad tarts depicted above. Again, those shots are purely eye-catchers for some of the lower brow element that stops by on occassion. Indeed, Ned always has the best gear and kit for both himself and his kids when we go hunting.
So, while there is lots of Summer between now and the Dove "Opener" Sportmen and Sportswomen are counting the days and cleaning the guns and keeping the dogs in shape...See you in the field.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Boxing Update

There was some drama this week in the Philadelphia Boxing world. A fight card was scheduled for this Friday at The Arena in South Philadelphia. The boxer I manage was slated for a 6 round bout against Manuel Guzman. Everything was set and I had friends and clients lined up to enjoy the evening in the private box.
However, the Promoter and the Manager of the venue became embroiled in some contractual dispute over ticket proceeds from the last event. It seems they could not reach an agreement and the fights were cancelled.
Fortuitously, barely 10 minutes after I received news of the cancellation, another promoter was on the phone inquiring as to whether my fighter would contract for the same fight on July 9th in Atlantic City. The July 9th event features Mike Jones defending his Welterweight title and is a much bigger platform for my guy. We agreed to the bout without hesitation.
My fighter is thrilled with this change as he will be showcased on a better card before a much larger crowd at Boardwalk Hall in A.C.
The buzz around local gyms is that I am a connected manager since I was able to arrange a quick contract for my guy...when all the other fighters scheduled to fight on the cancelled card are out of luck and justifiably angry.
So, what could have been a major dissapointment has turned into an opportunity....and if Butler can get a win in A.C. it will improve his career path considerably....

Friday, June 18, 2010


Off to Annapolis, Maryland for the Father's Day Invitational Lacrosse Tournament. The weather forecast is favorable and the other Coaches and I are confident that the boys will aquit themselves well. There are teams from as far away as Texas coming to this event. It proves to be a wonderful experience.
If we have time, we plan to tour the U.S. Naval Academy Museum.
Happy Father's Day to all Dads out there...
I lost my Father last July so this will be my first Fatherless Father's day....I wonder how I will react come Sunday. At least the lax games on Sunday will keep my mind off of it and I will be with my son who is my Father's namesake. In a future post I will recount my Dad's story...he was an amazing man.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Underrated Commodity

When one walks the streets of Philadelphia...or any City..or any Town...or any Airport...any Stadium...nearly sees people with wires leading to their ears. Ipods or ancient "Walkmen" blasting music into the heads of everyday people on a nearly constant basis. Why do so many people feel compelled to pipe a soundtrack into their lives?

Why does nearly every stadium feel it necessary to blast music between innnings during baseball games...during breaks in Football and during time outs in Hockey. These queries do not even consider the amount of time we use cell phones or get assaulted by TV and traffic noise.
One of the truly wonderful things about various outdoor pursuits is the time spent in virtual silence.
For the few moments before dawn in a duck blind the world is silent. Even as the marsh begins to wake up one hears only natural ambient sounds of wind and a few birds. Experiencing the natural world at times like these is one of the reasons we Sportsmen take to the field.
A deer stand can offer long periods of stark silence...punctuated now and then by a squirrel rustling in leaves or a Blue Jay calling.
Surf fishing necessarily places the participant next to the roaring surf...but the rythmic symphony of waves breaking is a type of quiet in the form of the absence of man made noise. Sitting on the beach watching your surf rod in it's stand provides ample time for reflection and relaxation.
A person often cannot recall or appreciate the calming effect of silence until it is experienced for an extended period. Long periods of quiet afford time for restorative thinking and contemplative self assesment. As the old saying goes: Silence is golden. Check the market..the price of gold is going up.

Monday, June 14, 2010

More Lacrosse

The BOLT Tournament last weekend did not go too well. Our team was placed in a bracket that was above our level....both in age and skill. Because of the reputation of the Club we play for...(very good players)...this sometimes happens. As a result, we went 0-3 and the kids were smoked in the last game 11-2. These lopsided defeats can be very demoralizing for the players and as Coaches we had a difficult time keeping things in perspective and helping the kids focus on fun and refining their lacrosse skills.
In addition, it was oppressively hot and humid. On balance, our kids battled the best team at the Tourney in our second game of the day and lost 4-3 in a close contest. We reinforced to our kids that in Lacrosse (as in life) hard work can sometimes defeat talent.
We have a 2 day tournament in Annapolis,Maryland this coming weekend. We hope to have a more positive experience during these games. On Saturday,all of our teams will get together for a Crab and Barbecue dinner at a park along the Chesapeake...and that should be fun for the kids and the Coaches.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Abby Sunderland

Unfortunate news....many of you may have been following the progress and saga of this 16 year old sailor.I have been following her story with keen interest. She has sailed around the world alone...and has been attempting to complete a circumnavigation. Today's news is that she is in the southern Indian Ocean and in serious trouble. She has been experiencing dangerously high waves and is feared to be lost. Her family is staying positive and notes that she has all the gear necessary if her boat founders...raft,survival suit etc.
Nevertheless, it is a sad and scary time as her loved ones and her fans wait for search results and some word that she is OK. Abby is a fellow Blogger and an intrepid young lady who is to be admired for her guts, determination and sailing skill. I suggest we all say a prayer or have a positive thought for Abby. Fair weather and calm seas to you my dear....

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Overtime Loss

Our beloved Flyer's lose in Game 6. A great playoff run and a lot of fun to watch. We do not have to like the result though...
No photos for this post.
As Paulie said in "The Pope of Greenwich Village" after his horse came in 2nd :" I don't need no pictures..."

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Season Wrap

Our boy's regular lacrosse season is over. We made a respectable showing with a record of 6-3.
We have the B.O.L.T. Tournament this weekend with 3 games Sunday. Next weekend we have the Annapolis Father's Day Tournament which is 6 games over 2 days.
We had some talented kids and some mediocre kids...we had some polite and cooperative kids and some side-line eye-rollers ...we had a defenseman try to stage a Mutiny over the Fast Break Slide....we had a rookie goalie who did a great job with the exception of one meltdown. As always, it was a fun time to spend with these kids and "give back" to the game. We are excited for the 2 Tournaments to close out the Spring and glad we had this time to and enjoy the great game of Lacrosse.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Sports Injuries

Great start to the weekend with the events at Devon on Friday and the Flyer's victory. Things began to deteriorate thereafter. On Saturday I was playing in a Squash Tournament at Germantown Cricket Club. Halfway thru the second match I was charging toward the front wall to return a shot. I felt a pop in my left calf. It literally felt like the ball had hit my leg...which was what I thought.But how could the ball hit me in the back of the calf when it was bouncing off the front wall? The sharp pain in my calf answered that query.
It seems I sustained a partial tear in a calf muscle. So much for the Match...had to forfeit and go ice the injury. I was fairly aggravated. Throughout all the years I played Lacrosse and got bashed around...and bashed others around...and throughout years of skiing with some pretty bad spills and years of squash....I never sustained an injury that interfered with my locomotion. So this nagging calf injury has caused a nice limp. I called a Doctor buddy who is an Orthopedic Surgeon and he said to simply ice it for a few days and eat some Ibuprofen.... it'll be OK in a few weeks. I stayed off it for most of the rest of the weekend...but said ambulatory malfunction did not preclude a trip to a Belmont Stakes cocktail party Saturday at 5 p.m., or a Barbecue dinner at a friend's Farm after the Race....followed by a late night visit to Roache & O'Brien for some beers with the boys...perching on a barstool qualifies as resting the afflicted lower extremity in the Sportsman's treatment regimen. Miraculously, after administering various types and portions of liquid anti-inflammatories...I was surprisingly unconcerned about my recent muscular trauma.
Sunday evening featured a poor result for the our beloved Flyers. After an incredible game Friday night to even the series at 2 games each...the boys went down hard last night. It was a depressing 1st period and did not get much better. So we hope Wednesday's game is a win...leading to a Game 7....
My left wheel feels better already...this a.m. my flexibility and movement is increased..

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Where Champions Meet


The Devon Horse Show-Where Champions Meet. The most prestigious and biggest Horse Show in the Country. Tomorrow night is the $100,000.00 Gran Prix,which is the pinnacle of show jumping competition. The Devon Fairgrounds will be mobbed with every Uber-Prep, Barn rat, and Horse junkie from far and near. The Box seats will feature genteel picnics and cocktails and the bars under both grandstands will teem with Main Line gentry and WASP wenches...both old and young. Miles of Lily fabrics sufficient to delight Beth from S.C and Preppy Mafia as well as the lovely lady from Summer is a Verb and EAS from Baltimore; enough Seersucker,white bucks and khaki to satisfy ADG,Toad,Tin Tin and that crew.
As for this Sportsman, I will be escorting my 14 year old daughter. She is a Barn Rat,a Horse Junkie and a show jumper so she will be completely absorbed in the competition. For me,a few Rum & Tonics at my friend's Box and a few friendly wagers on who wins the Gran Hunting Dog Archie will be along for the evening as Devon maintains one of the last great Main Line traditions of dogs being allowed and encouraged!
It really is an exciting event...the athleticism and skill required of both horse and rider is amazing...they negotiate numerous jumps on a timed course....the jumps are high and the competition is daunting.
We'll be back with the whole family and some friends for the Gambler's Choice Jumping Competition on Friday night in a prime box in the main stands...more cocktails and wagering for the Adults while the kids run amok along the midway, founder on lemon sticks, burgers, cake and ice cream, and attempt to win every useless trinket and soon to be discarded stuffed monstrosity at the carnival games while sketchy Carny types egg them on. The Devon traditon is one of the great Main Line legacies.....The Devon Horse Show also raises quite a bit of money for Bryn Mawr Hospital every there is a philanthropic bent to the entirety of the festivities.
Now, if the Flyers can just win 2 in a row and even out this series.....

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Hemingway at 21

I recently heard an interesting story involving one of histories most famous sportsman: Ernest Hemingway was in New York City in 1931 and was squiring the girlfriend of notorious gangster "Legs" Diamond. He took this girl to "21" ...which at that time was the most elegant and popular Speakeasy in Manhattan. According to several independent and corroborated accounts, Ernest was caught shagging away with this young vixen on a set of stairs in a remote section of the underground kitchens. When word of this indiscretion reached the trigger happy criminal boyfriend, he was irate...and he wanted Hemingway killed. However, Diamond himself was shot in Albany, New York a few days later and never had a chance to execute his vendetta.Imagine, we might never have had a chance to read "For Whom the Bell Tolls" or "Old Man and the Sea" or "Across the River and into the Trees" simply because a liquored up sportsman/writer got a bit randy with the wrong wench. If Ernest had been clipped by Mr. Diamond, at least "The Sun Also Rises" had already been published.