Baseball’s Lost Ballparks

Baseball’s Lost Ballparks

In this post, I’ve compiled a number of short videos honoring some of Major League Baseball’s old time stadiums and ballparks. There’s a definite mythology to baseball that’s unique in the sports world. Whereas most sports are thinly veiled re-enactments of war or the sex act (i.e. the coordinated and merciless spermatozoan assault on the egg in the form of a goal, an end zone, or a basket), baseball’s attraction is more philosophical and spiritual. Unlike the other sports, the objective in baseball is not to break through your enemy’s defenses and humiliate them by thrusting yourself into their territory. It’s to return from whence you started – home. Baseball lends itself to poetry and nostalgia in a way that other sports cannot. And lest I wax too nostalgic myself, it’s not all idealism and purity. There are ugly aspects to the game as well – the ban on black players until 1947, the psychopathy of Ty Cobb, the politics involved in keeping Pete Rose out of the Hall of Fame, and above all, the over commercialization which has homogenized the game into practical irrelevancy. It’s little wonder that baseball’s nostalgia extends to the old parks where the game was once played – Ebbets Field, the Polo Grounds, Old Comiskey, Forbes Field, and now the old Yankee Stadium. The only uniformity in these parks were that the bases were 90 feet apart. What follows are a collection of short videos honoring and chronicling some of baseball’s great (and not so great) old time ballparks. Videos of Baseball’s Old Time Parks     Crosley Field   The Polo Grounds   Griffith Stadium   Yankee Stadium         Cleveland Municipal Stadium   Shibe...

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Spider Man vs. Batman

Spider Man vs. Batman

OK – I don’t know if this video from the Sean Ward Show Youtube video channel will stand the test of time exactly. I found it equal parts hilarious and stupid. It’s a superhero spoof that features a “battle” between Spider Man and Batman that sprawls across Toronto on a summer night in July of 2012. The initial conflict centers around the pair’s competing movies but quickly escalates – devolves is probably a better description – into a general rivalry on principle. What I enjoyed the most is how lame these guys are. Not only are they ridiculously ineffective superheroes – Spider Man, in his red Converse hi-tops, clearly needs to drop at least 30 pounds, and it’s hard not to laugh at Batman’s lack of mobility in his suit and struggles with his cape – but both “superheroes” are petulant and insecure. The video reminds of that quote from the French novelist, Colette: “You will do foolish things, but do them with...

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KL Tower Jump – What Are We Not Capable Of?

KL Tower Jump – What Are We Not Capable Of?

The Kuala Lumpur Tower is a nearly 1400 foot (421 meters) building in Malaysia. It’s been the site of the KL Tower International Jump for the last two years (October) where more than 100 base jumpers hurl themselves off the tower and parachute (hopefully) to safety. The video below is footage shot and compiled by Scotty Rogers and Andy Lewis of the MrSlackline YouTube channel. Some pretty amazing stuff – and I was particularly struck by Rogers’ commentary at the very end of the video regarding human potential.     Update – KL Tower Jump Footage   Here’s a second video from the same jump with some incredible footage. Enjoy!...

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Tracy Nelson – Down So Low

Tracy Nelson – Down So Low

My good friend Dillon turned me on to this song. Actually, I wasn’t even familiar with Tracy Nelson to begin with, so he turned me on to her as well. Nelson, who has continued with a solo career, formed the blues-rock band Mother Earth in San Francisco in 1968. They’re remembered most for Nelson’s signature classic, Down So Low. It’s been covered by a number of artists over the years, most famously by Linda Ronstadt in the mid ’70s. The Etta James version is pretty cool as well. And more recently, Cyndi Lauper did a good cover of it, too. In this 1987 live performance in conjunction with the Kentucky Center of the Arts‘ Lonesome Pines Specials late ’80s/early ’90s concert series, Nelson delivers a stirring rendition of the song. It begins plaintive and ends – in defiance of the title – quite buoyant. Her vocals are amazing. Tracy Nelson Performing “Down So Low” – Lonesome Pines Special (1987 )       Tracy Nelson Encore Why stop at just one song? Here are a couple more performances from the Lonesome Pines performance . . .   Drowning in Memories     Walk...

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