Thursday August 30, 2012

PITTSFIELD

It's a little writing exercise I like to call A through Z. I call it that for obvious reasons.

Angela O'Neil: If you didn't read Matthew Sprague's feature on the daughter of the late educator and basketball coach Bob O'Neil, then please find a copy of Sunday's Eagle or go online and do so. The well-written emotional tale is an award winner and by all accounts so are Angela and her mother Betty. What a wonderful read, and when you see Matthew, congratulate him on the effort. A tremendous job.

Babe Ruth World Series: Our local boys add yet another chapter to the great history that is baseball in Pittsfield. The beauty of it all? It will mean that much more to them in 20 years. Hey kids, long live those memories. And coach Bob Shade, take another bow.

Construction on the roads: I guess you gotta fix them. But man, it seemed like those road crews were everywhere this summer.

Dugouts: The third-base side dughout at the former East Little League diamond at Allendale School was actuallly dug out. You had to go down a few steps to get into it. It was a real dugout. Are there any remaining in the city? Tell me.

Elm Street: Steady as she goes.

Friendly's: I read about a year ago that the company was going bankrupt and about to close the local stores. Who spreads those stories? Last I looked, still open.

Guido's: OK, a bit high end. But, worth it. The guys working the fish department are pretty cool.


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And they do a good job.

Hillcrest Hospital: The surgical hospital was incorporated under the laws of the commonwealth as a charitable institution in 1908.

I was amazed: Yeah, then and now. Neil Armstrong passed away. I watched with a friend on lower Westminster Avenue. Looks good on a resume under the heading Previous Accomplishments: Walked on moon. You want reality TV? Well, that was reality TV long before it became a trend.

Jell-O: Does anyone serve it locally? Or do you have to buy it? Hey, easy on the whipped cream.

K: Why do I write K into my scorebook when someone strikes out? Why not S? Anyone know?

Lee Bank: OK, they're on North Street now. How do I know? Well, they are sort of my neighbor. And, how should I say this, the sign is very distinctive. It kind of stands out, but you know what? It's OK.

Mad Jack's: A business success story on North Street. Great ribs, go visit.

Nice idea: This may not fly, but I'd give those Babe Ruth kids the month of September off from school just so they can catch up on being kids.

Oh say can you see? Yes, and I can hear too. As a sports fan, do you ever wonder how many times a year you hear the national anthem? The answer? A lot. Hey, great song and a little tough to sing, but I'm always looking for replacements. Not all the time, just some of the time. My two nominees this week are "Crimson and Clover" by Tommy James and the Shondells or "Midnight on the Bay" by Neil Young.

Pete Snyder: The former bowling columnist for The Eagle passed away a couple of weeks back. In the day, his column might have been the most consistenly read work the newspaper offered. Bowling was, and still is, a big deal here.

Quick: Why is Phil Cavaretta the answer to a great baseball trivia question? The former MVP and batting champion for the Chicago Cubs is the only player to be on an active roster while Babe Ruth and Henry Aaron were each in the bigs.

Roger Clemens: Count on the Rocket pitching a game for the Houston Astros before the season ends. It will push his Hall of Fame eligibility back five years, but that's a good thing for Roger. He needs to let the embers cool. Still, the story of the weekend was former Pittsfield Red Sox and Boston Red Sox lefty Bill Lee throwing a complete game for an Independent League team in California. Lee pitched at Wahconah Park again a number of years after he retired when he brought a barnstorming team through the city. That roster included former Boston players Bernie Carbo, Dave Stapleton and Roger Moret. The Spaceman is one of a kind. Then again, so was Neil Armstrong, and he was a real spaceman.

Service at Cim's Tavern: Friendly and efficient. It's a good place to go.

Teo's: I went the other night. I hadn't been in a while. How about a throwback weekend where the dogs are just 50 cents each? People will probably be lined up out the door and the venue would do well to introduce their fare to a new generation of customers, or folks who have moved into Pittsfield in recent years and are unaward that Teo's exists. I'm serious. I think it's a good idea.

Undermountain Road: It's a Pittsfield street that I always thought would be a cool place for hobbits to live.

Verchot: Anyone know what ever happened to the Verchot family that once resided on New Hampshire Avenue. I'd love to know. It's so easy to lose track of people. They were good friends when I was just a yo ung kid. Buddy, Skippy, Mary Jane, Christine and Maureen. Just wondering, are you out there?

WWE: Is Triple H done? Will C.M. Punk get his respect? And how long can Seamus hold off Alberto Del Rio? This stuff matters to me. It's the greatest show on earth.

X-tra: X-tra, read all about it! The 2012-13 school year is about to start. Really? Wow.

Young and restless: Educators spend way too much time monitoring the clothes that middle and high school (even elementary) students choose to wear. The answer? Uniforms, uniforms and more uniforms.

Ziti: Haven't been to Jimmy's Restaurant in a while. So, see you there soon.

Brian Sullivan can be reached at mariavicsullivan@yahoo.com.