Thursday, December 29, 2011

When Yesteryears New Years seemed a million Light-Years Away By Jerry Pritikin

Sadie,Rolla Wainer,Omie,Allen-1945

Hank The Chicago Tomato King-1947

Similar to the Sales Books for 1945

Hank Pritikin with Morrie Wainer on Chicago's South Water Market St. Produce Market (first row-Far Right-1942)

Sadie & Henry Pritikin-1940

End of the 2011 year thoughts... and a few of yesteryear's New Years. The New Year Eve I found most profound, was 1944 turning into 1945. We lived on the first floor on N.Troy Street in a red brick duplex. My Dad's business partner Morrie Wainer, and his family lived on the 2nd floor. We planed to bring in the New Year by hitting the tops of my mom's pots and pans at the sound of the nearby factory whistle blowing exactly at mid-night to cue us when to make noise at New Year. My parents were getting ready to leave, my Dad Hank , was looking good in a suit and tie, and my mom Sadie was decked out in a fine dress made with sequins.

My Dad gave us a few of the business cash receipts books, with 1 original and a Yellow & Pink page less the carbon papers... and told us to make some confetti out of them by tearing them into little pieces. It was 2 weeks before my 8th birthday. Just after Guy Lombardo's and his Royal Canadians live radio feed out of NYC at 11 P.M. Chicago time... we all started to make our own pile of confetti. I happened to look down at the imprinted original and noticed My dad's South Water Street Produce Market business name, a Haymarket Telephone number, and where the date was printed 194_ and you filled in the last digit. I remember thinking to myself, that these books will never never be out of date . The 1950s seemed a million light years away.... as did the 60s,70s,80s,90s,2000s only now a day away from another year... this time 2012.

Happy New Year, Again!


Their twins, Roy and Rolla came down to our flat, and with my brother Allen, we all played games.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

My Pick for 2011 Gay Softball Comeback of the Year ... By Jerry Pritikin

Senior Cup in hands of sponsor

Director Peter Meyer CMSA Senior Cup

Scooter Div Champions 2011 Bob's Old Bats/ Chicago

12th Annual CMSA Senior Cup Program

My 3rd CMSA Senior Cup for Being Oldest Active Player at 74

I had great intentions of writing about this event when it happened early in September. I had postponed a hernia operation to play in this years 2011 annual Chicago Metropolitan Sports Association's Senior Cup Tournament. This was their 12th year. I played for most of their existence, sponsoring several Bubbies Pickle's teams. I have earned a nice array of Awards. I almost did not come back after the last years debacle I had with the sponsor/ manager of the St. louis entry. I was treated badly, with poor excuses for not starting me or playing me. I was added to their roster because they were short on players. Mosquitoes and rain put a damper on the first game. I was 1 for 3, and replaced in the 5th inning of our first game. Then waiting for rain delays and a late game. I was told that I would play in all games... it never happened. Sunday morning I showed up for an early game, and again the promise of being in the starting line-up was never kept. He stayed with the same losing line up. So I quit, but I later learned he won the Award as the oldest active player for that tournament that had i stayed would of won. Earlier this years, I told Peter Meyers (Director of the Senior Cup and one of the original founders of the Senior Cup) that I would like to play again... and presented him a short list of teams that I prefer not to play with.

The night before the 2 day event I was assigned to meet with Manager/sponsor Robert Heidrich of Bob's old Bats. They were a player short. He asked me what position I played, and volunteered to catch, or DH, and he even offered me a chance to pitch,again. However it's been too many years since I threw my patented Knuckle Ball. I had hoped to contribute by playing. I missed a great photo opportunity when I did not bring my camera to record the festive sign-in party at Charlie's on Broadway. It was like old times... seeing so many friendly faces... and a few not so friendly. A few things happened to me that never happened before in all my years playing, since 1974, I actually swung and miss a slow pitched lob. I was saved the first time, when it only became the second strike... and then the umpire called the game on time and we were winning, so it never counted. The very next day, I again missed a pitch. In my defense, I had not played on any team in the summer CMSA's regular softball season. I did modified my swing and I wound up going 9 for 19, and had 4 walks with one turning out to be the game winning run. I had one game winning hit, and had a few timely RBI's and scored often. I won the Award for Oldest active player... my 3rd time. Bob's Old Bats won the first place trophy in the Scooter Division.

One other fact, I played on my first seniors team, "The Fabulos Forty's!" that was the first gay senior team in the nation back in 1979. Today, thereare over 50 American cities that have Gay Sponsored Sports Leagues.

Peter Meyer, who is retiring from being the Senior Cup Tournament Director, batter over a thousand on getting the fields in shape, and the weather was perfect, too. The Umpires were fabulous,as always. I enjoyed picking on some players... some of the younger players complained, and I had to shut up... I guess I took it out with my vicious swings... I admit a few turned out to be dribbles through the infield with seeing eyes or pop-flyies just over the infielder's head... I like the old baseball adage "They look like line-drives in the scorebook!"
One more thing...
My hernia operation turned out to create more problems then I bargained for. I am thankful I had the opportunity to play ball, because I have been recovering from my 2 months in hell, and I'm just now beginning to recover.

Monday, December 19, 2011

EXTRA! Read About it and the Beat goes on...12/19/2011 By Jerry Pritikin

North Korean leader Kim Jong Il (or Fill in the Blank) is DEAD!

This year, many dictators died, and a few of them not from natural causes. Arab Spring has sprung! Kadafi's is gone, Bin Laden done in,and Egypt's Hosni Mubarak resigning and facing charges, Civil war possibilities in Syria. The usual hot spots that seldom cool down with familiar sounding names. Tonight's announcement that North Korea's Leader Kim Jong is dead, followed by world stock markets in a downward response. What's next? We wonder who will their followers follow next?

I remember when Stalin died March 5th 1953 and regularly schedule television programs were interrupted. Just that week, On the cover of "Popular Science Magazine" was a story Why Stalin will live until he's 150 Years Old! Inside, the article reported Russia had developied a new mechanical heart that made that possible. Ike was President and anti-Communist, Richard Nixon was Vice President. He was a heart beat away from becoming President several time, thankfully Ike recovered from heart problems in time preventing that from "ever" happening(until 1968). The Big question back then was "What will happen now?" Churchill was the only one left from WWll "Big 3." . The Korean War was still on,and and the Cold war was getting hotter! Somehow, We survived despite the news!

I remember 2 things about the beginning of the Korean War in 1950. it started June 25th, I was listening to the radio baseball game of the week when a news bulletin broke-in about a place called Korea. and later that week's headlines and a city called Seoul . World War ll, the war to end all wars, ended just 5 years earlier.

The only Peace in "MY TIME" is when my TV and computer are off...

In this day of instant news via TV broadcast news and the www. They keep bombarding us with "breaking news" stories and the latest scandals in sports,politics and Hollywood, and the latest B.S. news poll. I have been lucky, I never paid attention to political polls since Gallop's tabbed Dewey our "next" president in 1948. So in this Season, that songs are bringing us good cheer, and wishes of Peace on Earth... there's nothing new in the news except the names in the news, replacing familiar names in the news always... and the beat goes on (Thank you Vanila Fudge)
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