Goose/The Finger

James A. Landau JJJRLandau at AOL.COM
Tue Jan 22 13:53:49 UTC 2002

In a message dated 1/22/02 8:17:53 AM Eastern Standard Time, douglas at NB.NET

> later  (late 19th or early 20th C.) the "bird" was a raspberry or Bronx
cheer, and
> finally (ca. 1966) the word was applied to a middle-finger 'salute'.

Does anyone know if the following anecdote be true:  Casey Stengel, when he
was an active baseball player rather than a manager, once while playing in
Brooklyn took his cap off and a bird flew out.  This made Stengel the first
man ever to give the bird back to Brooklyn.

I read this story in a long-ago newspaper article about Stengel, probably
while Stengel was manager of the Mets.  Considering that Stengel was in his
70's while with the Mets, his playing days must have been the around the

            - Jim Landau

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