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On Baseball - the 'Art of the Order'
Update

HeartfeltTony Ardizzone's 'art... in his widely acclaimed novel, Heart of the Order resonates for us, with "Subway Series 2000" for all of the romance that goes with baseball.  If you enjoyed Heaven Can Wait, you'll love this novel.  Ignore the fact it's out-of-print and let Amazon shag it for you. Ardizzone circa 1986Don't go by us-- see what Sports Illustrated, USA Today and the Virginian-Pilot said. Don't accuse us of bias, just because two characters are named Leon Chance and Tommy Puma.  We can't help we were around when Tony was tooling Heart with our colorful, if not comically-beyootiful names. Or that graduate school was a privilige under Tony's outstanding tutelage  because Tony is revered by many for his no-nonsense approach to sharing his fiction crafts. He is still conspicuous by his absence, annually during the ODU Literary Festival.

Kudos also to Billy Crystal in the 2001 season for bringing us the extraordinary HBO televised production of  61*61*, a film touted as the greatest baseball film ever, and in our viewing, lives up to it: "The year was 1961. Baseball legend Babe Ruth's incredible 60 homer record was under attack. New York Yankee teammates, Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle, were the challengers." Let's just say it was one painless and thoroughly engrossing was to get some baseball history, including Mark McGuire footage. You'll get many insights to the relevance of baseball records and why the 1961 season is still so controversial.

Also worthy, is Doris Kearns Goodwin's memoir Wait Till Next Year, which speaks to her neighborhood, "equally divided among Dodger, Giant and Yankee fans" in the 50's.  An era when one of the three New York teams went to the series every year. She's the Pulitzer-winning author of No Ordinary Time and bestsellers, The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys and Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream; seen often on Today, Nightline and heard frequently phoning phony, Imus-- in the Morning (you gotta' tune in for her, and the likes of JFK Jr.-- how does Dungy Don doo-it?).  Incidently, the book is worthy alone, for extraordinary AP/World Wide Photos of the '49 Dodgers, Campanella, Hodges, Robinson, Reese, Cox, Ford, Newcombe, Berra, and more.  What Next Year exhibits best, is how baseball ties father and daughter so closely through ritual.  And that's the poetry and romance of Baseball.  Yes, the ritual of baseball.

Further, Bravo aired "Eight Men Out" on it's Five Star Cinema, a film taken from Eliot Asinof's book, directed by John Sayles: about the 1919 infamous "Black Sox"-- with John Cusack, D.B Sweeney, director-Perry Lang, Jace Alexander, Christopher Lloyd, Studs Terkel, John Mahoney, Gordon Clapp and more.  What's remarkable about Eight, is that despite the extraordinary Matewan director's guidance, the exceptional cast performances and the incredibly intriguing story of the Chicago White Sox throwing the World Series, effectively ending the career of "Shoeless 'Say it ain't so, Joe' Jackson" (inhaling) tell us why we kept looking at the clock during this 121 minute picture show?  It's one of those inexplicable dealies, enough to make ya' wanna' watch it again to see why, since all the ingredients are there.  And nevermind you just missed Tommy Lee Jones' engrossing portrayal in Cobb. 

If you're seriously series-spirited, (don't have to say it with candy, a plug or Dubble-Bubble wad) you may instead wanna' go-ta' bat with Subway Series, Major League Baseball, Yogi Berra, Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Cooperstown, Joe DiMaggio, Jackie Robinson,et al.

At the risk of revealing our team: Yankees! 
2010 R K Puma    ro@rkpuma.com
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