Sunday, February 01, 2009

The LuLac Edition #711, Feb. 1st, 2009



I can’t help but root for the Cardinals in this year’s Super Bowl. And it’s because of my dad who was a Cards fan. Sunday afternoon was our day to watch the pros. Never much for the College Game, our alliance to the pro game came from constant exposure from my uncles and my dad’s in laws who were Giant fans. My dad became a Cardinals fan because of Pittston resident Charlie Trippi. At one point my dad worked in a butcher shop during the 30s and knew the Trippi family as customers. It was in the Butcher shop that he acquired his nickname “Jake” from the slang saying at the time,“everything’s jake”. My team growing up as a kid were the Packers. (Still are by the way). My allure for the Packers came from my Godfather, my uncle Joe Pribula who told me tales of the team. Plus they were the up and coming team of the 60s and as a little kid, I too noticed that being with a winner was pretty cool. Our Sunday football afternoons lasted until the Sunday he died on Jan. 6th, 1980. As usual we were preparing for the game but he died of a massive heart attack on our kitchen floor. It was ironic that his passing came on a football Sunday. The two distinct memories I have was the season I proved to him that as far as NFL games went, they weren’t fixed. He didn’t believe that so during the 78 season we bet on games as if we were going to a bookie. We weren’t, we just bet as though we did. There wasn’t a shortage of bookies in town at the time, but we both inherently knew better than to throw good money away. Halfway through the season, we were up by a $1,000. At the end we lost $7800.00. The games we tanked on were all field goal games. Thank God we weren’t using real money. Another memory I had was the 1975 season. The 1975 St. Louis Cardinals season was the team's 56th year with the NFL and the 16th season in St. Louis. The club scored 356 points while the defense gave up 276 points. The club appeared in the playoffs for the second consecutive year, by winning the NFC East with a record of eleven wins and three losses. During that year of ’75, the club never made it to the Super Bowl. I busted my father as we were watching the NFL Today on CBS with one of its great announcers Irv Cross. I asked my dad when did he think the Cards would get to the Super Bowl (pointing out that it had been 28 years since the club won a championship.) He said in a non racist, innocent way, pointing to Cross, an African American former pro player, “When we get a President who looks like that guy!” Well, in 1982 during the shortened season because of the strike, the Cards went 5-4 and in 1998 played the Vikings for the NLF Championship after beating the Cowboys. But they lost and the drought continued. Until 2008 this year when my dad’s team, the Cards finally got to the Super Bowl, some 29 years after his death and 33 years after we talked about it. Time passes but sports gives us a special place in our minds and hearts for memories. Memories of offhand comments that stick in your mind for years, even when at the time, you thought they were of little consequence. Go Cards, for Jake and all those fans that waited several years to get into the big game.


We were invited to a few parties this year but I’m staying home watching on our quite suitable 26 inch TV set. Since I can’t have anything cold from the chemo after effects, I’ll forego my semi annual 8 ounce cold Coors Lite and the chilled glass of Baileys at games end. Warm tea will have to do for now as well as room temperature Aquafina. We’ll have a mini pizza from Baby Dom’s (a great place next to the Train Shoppe on Pennsylvania Avenue) as well as one of those Wegman’s subs.


In my book, “A Radio Story”, one of the most talked about chapters was the Super Bowl party. On my “AUTHOR: DAVID YONKI” blog site, I posted the chapter. Here’s the link if you are so inclined to read it:


At 12:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great story about you and your dad. And a few years after your book, still re-reading and laughing. But GO STEELERS!!!!

At 1:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yonk: Great story about your dad. Nothing like any kind of sport to bind a child to a parent. Even if you guys bet real money and lost, that money could not replace the mermories. Wish I had met him.

At 3:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Loved the book, love Baby Doms. Steelers by 10. Sorry Jake! Keep on trucking Yonki, going to be an interesting year and Super Sunday is our halfday hiatus from the maddness.


Post a Comment

<< Home