Sports books

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Sun Sep 5 01:41:43 UTC 1999

     The NYPL and the Brooklyn Public Library both did the three-day-closing
deal for the Labor Day Weekend.  I did my tax-free week clothing shopping and
checked out some used sports books at the Strand Bookstore.

Marv Albert, I'D LOVE TO, BUT I HAVE A GAME (1993)

Pp. 36-37  He (Marty Glickman--ed.) brought forth the language of the game.
For instance, he was the first basketball announcer to start using the word
"swish."  People thought he invented it, but all he did was stand alongside
Knicks star Carl Braun one day and every time Braun shot it up Braun would
say, "swish."  He just brought it to the booth.  And the country.

Pp. 136-137  I'm afraid "Yesssss!" has leaked out from the world of sports.
I don't know how many times Macauley Culkin said it in the movie _Home Alone_
but I know I'm still waiting for the royalty checks.  It has replaced "All
right!" in the American idiom.  It is part of the language now.  _You mean
your mother-in-law is moving out_?  _Yesssss_!  (...)
Pg. 137  The first "Yesssss!" I ever uttered was at the end of the third
quarter of a Knicks game in 1968.  Dick Barnett hit a long shot at the buzzer
and I said, "Yesssss."  People started repeating it back to me the next day,
and the next thing you know it was part of my repertoire.  I got it from the
one time colorful NBA ref Sid Borgia.  Whenever a player would get fouled
while shooting, Sid would stick up his hand and holler, "If it
goes...Yesssss!"  In other words, "If it goes in the basket, I'm going to
give this guy a bonus free throw!  Yesssss!"  Poor Sid.  I don't believe he
ever recovered any royalty checks, either.


Pg. 15  The next match was the Mexican club America against AS Roma of Italy,
and it was then (1978?  This catch phrase was popularized in the 1994 World
Cup--ed.) that I shouted "Goooal!" really loudly, for the first time.  It
came from my soul, from my heart.  It had the power that comes only from
things that spring from one's essence.  I put my dreams, my childhood, my
life into that scream, one that I had been hearing forever from listening to
Jose Maria Munoz, the legendary Argentine sportscaster, on the radio at was my starting point.

Harry Caray, HOLY COW! (1989)

Pg. 41  One of the things I did say during that tournament (1941--ed.), by
the way, was "It might could IS a home run!"
     Another thing I'm fairly certain I said during that tournament was "Holy
cow!"  People always want to know where that expression comes from.  I'm not
exactly sure, but I do know it's something I've been saying all my life.
(The RHHDAS entry under "cow" does not cite Harry Caray or even Phil

Pg. 189  Jack Brickhouse, who was the voice of the Cubs for four decades, had
been the most beloved and discussed sportscaster in town.  His trademark
celebratory "Hey!  Hey!" was ingrained in the vocabulary of every school kid
in Chicago.  ("Hey!  Hey!" is not in the RHHDAS--ed.)

Mike Shropshire, THE ICE BOWL (1997)  (The "Ice Bowl" was the football
playoff game won by the Green Bay Packers over the Dallas Cowboys in 1967.
The classic NFL Films description of the "frozen tundra" became a football
catch phrase, but is not recorded in the RHHDAS--ed.)

Pg. 114  Tim Brown left the field, as they say in the National Hockey League,
"spittin' Chiclets."  Thanks to Jordan, he'd lost his four upper front teeth.


Pg. 93 Stupor Bowl (1968 New York Times column by Red Smith--ed.)

Jim Murray, AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY (1993)
(The late Jim Murray was a Pulitzer prize-winning sportswriter for the _Los
Angeles Times_ who helped to start _Sports Illustrated_--ed.)

Pg. 70  He (Pete Rose--ed.) was in spring training once and just after one
ball four he streaked down to first base.  Over in the other dugout, Mickey
Mantle, observing this, cracked sarcastically, "Well, if it isn't Charlie
Hustle!"  Pete, characteristically, took it as a compliment.

Pg. 85  One curious outgrowth of the Hogan bus accident (1955-ed.) was that
it gave birth to the myth of a Time, Inc. cover jinx.  _Time_ magazine had an
infelicitous run.  It put Hogan on the cover and he nearly lost his life--and
career--to a bus accident.  They put the prizefighter Sugar Ray Robinson on
the cover--and he was one of about three prizefighters who had ever made
it--and he promptly lost the first fight of his professional career.  (...)
Unreasonably enough, this translated in the public mind into a jinx label on
that other Time, Inc., publication, _Sports Illustrated_.  ("Cover jinx" is
one of the items I posted here that's been lost in the archives.  When was
that _Time_ citation?--ed.)

Pg. 98  He shot an 8.  What the pros call "a snowman."  The most famous--or
infamous--8 in golf history.  (Sam Snead in the 1939 U. S. Open--ed.)

Pg. 152  "Show me a good loser and I'll show you a loser," was an oft-heard
crack of a southern basketball coach.  (See the recent posting here quoting
football quarterback Fran Tarkenton--ed.)

Pg. 156  "You better be funny if you're 2-and-8," Cactus Jack Curtice of
Stanford used to say.

Pg. 189  "It ain't braggin' if you can do it!" he (Boxer Muhammad Ali--ed.)
was to tell us.  (This classic modern American quotation is not in the

Pg. 210  (Jim Murray tried to insult every American city.  W. C. Fields' "On
the whole, I'd rather be in Philadelphia" is mentioned, but "first prize one
week, second prize two weeks" is not--ed.)
     I said New York should have a big sign on it, "Out of Order." (...)
     I said Philadelphia was closed on Sunday and should be the rest of the
week as well. (...)
     I said Louisville--predictable, I called it "Lousyville" (Not in
RHHDAS--ed.)--was America's still.  At night, it smelled like an old bar rag.
Pg. 212  I said it (Pittsburgh--ed.) was America's Slag Heap.  I called the
local delicacy, kielbasa sausage, "botulism on a bun."

More information about the Ads-l mailing list