Author Archives: rcarmean

About rcarmean

Two things... First, why have I decided to establish this blog? I like to put essays together. I research an idea or topic looking for information, statistics, stories, quotes, pictures, etc. I enjoy the process and seeing a finished product. I’m told that as I get older, new activities can help maintain energy and keep my brain alert. In other words, I am not doing this for money or fame. Second, regarding the gentleman in the collage of pictures above...it's not me. Those are photos of Christy Mathewson. Why him? When I was young, my primary activity was being sick. It took up much of my time. Eczema (a case so bad I was written up in a medical journal showing doctors what their patients COULD look like), asthma, and allergies. You know allergies: don’t eat this, don’t wear that, and, for Heaven’s sake, don’t touch any of these things (eg, dogs, cats, horses --I only saw horses in cowboy movies and TV shows, dust, swimming pools, my brother --OK, that’s an exaggeration, Rick was a fine brother). In my spare time between doctors' appointments, pills, and ointments, baseball kept me sane. In the 1940s and 1950s, when I grew up, pro footballI and basketball had not yet become extremely popular. Baseball truly was “the national pastime.” I listened to games on the radio (remember it? TV without the picture). I read magazines, books, and newspaper accounts of games. I collected baseball cards. I learned about the game’s history, as well as present. The same with its stars. One man stood out: Christy Mathewson. He was a great pitcher for the New York Giants in the early 20th century. But there was much more to him. At a time when professional athletes made little money (yes, there was such a time) and ball players were considered on the same level as actors, artists, and prostitutes, Mathewson stood out. One of his nicknames was: “The Christian Gentleman.” Most men is baseball drank, smoked, cursed, and fought —with other players, umpires, and fans. The fights were physical, not just verbal. Mathewson did none of these things. But he earned the respect of other players who did them all. Even Ty Cobb and John McGraw. There’s more. He was a college graduate (Bucknell University) when most men were lucky to have a high school diploma. He played other sports, including pro football which you wouldn’t recognize. He was handsome. He played in New York City, then as now, the largest city in the country. Excellence and popularity there meant fame and money. He dressed well. Today, his commercials would rival LeBron’s. And, finally, a hero’s life must have tragedy. After his playing career ended, WWI arrived. He suffered from influenza and was exposed to mustard gas. Chemical warfare. His lungs were damaged and he required treatment for the rest of his life. (Like my Grandfather who also fought in The Great War.) He died in 1925. He was 45 years old. I have his picture here because you need to know more about him than me. He was what an athlete could be. Players like him and their accomplishments got me through a sickly, painful childhood and can still sustain me in difficult times. *****

TCM in February**

    Turner Classic Movies helps you focus on the coming Oscars with its month long festival of films shown on its TV channel.  Every night from  February 1 to March 3, it will show films for your enjoyment by … Continue reading

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The 50th Anniversary of…

1969 …and events/films occurring in that year.  How many do you remember? Average income: $8,550 Average cost of new home: $15,550      Film: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (see below) Cost of a new car: $3,270 Cost of gallon … Continue reading

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Baseball’s All-Time Nice Guy Team

Not all great baseball players have the fan-friendly attitude of Ty Cobb or Ted Williams. There have been players of great skill who could genuinely be described as “nice guys.”   Here is a line-up of such individuals. Pitcher: Christy Mathewson.  Playing … Continue reading

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Netflix Arrives

Recently, I discussed our Comcast service and its cost with one of their representatives.  Their most interesting idea was informing me they could drop 4 or 5 of their lesser channels (none of which I ever used) and replace them … Continue reading

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A Final Thank You, 2018 (Part 2)

  This introduction is a repeat of Part 1’s introduction. However, the people  described below are, obviously, different.  Many famous people died in 2018.  Among them were: Roger Bannister, Anthony Bourdain, Barbara Bush, George H. W. Bush, Roy Clark, Vic Damone, … Continue reading

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A Final Thank You, 2018

Many famous people died in 2018.  Among them were: Roger Bannister, Anthony Bourdain, Barbara Bush, George H. W. Bush, Roy Clark, Vic Damone, Aretha Franklin, Billy Graham, Stephen Hawking, Stan Lee, John McCain, Burt Reynolds, Philip Roth, Neil Simon, Tom … Continue reading

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Christmas Gifts for Famous People

How is your Christmas shopping coming?  Almost finished?  What? Haven’t started yet?!  Oh, my goodness.  For myself, I’ve had trouble coming up with appropriate gifts for famous people who have almost everything already.  So, my list this year is more of  … Continue reading

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