September 01, 2008

Fantastic Card of the Day

Wow, it's late. Or at least it is for me. I guess this could wait til tomorrow... Except... I have a feeling that this card will show up in my dreams tonight, taunting me to figure out the Mystery of the Two Well-Dressed Men in the Stands Behind Burt Hooton. Seriously, I feel like the third Hardy Boy trying to make sense of who those two guys are at the top of the bleachers. Wait... there were only two Hardy Boys, weren't there. Hmm. Well, you know any time a book series clocks in at well over 50 volumes, I say it's okay to position yourself as an alternate. You gotta figure one of the two is gonna get sick of the other one, or will sprain an ankle and can't get past page 100, or will be killed off or something. Makes sense for there to be a stand-in, stretching and loosening up somewhere in the background. Right.

Anyway, I've come up with a list of possibilities on the identities of these guys:

• Jake and Elwood Blues Problem with this theory is that they're a), about ten years early, and b), not wearing hats and sunglasses. Other than that, one's tall, the other's fat, and they're at a Cubs practice... Oh, but that's another problem, isn't it? This is surely Cubs spring training, and wouldn't Jake be in lockup at Joliet round about this time?

• The Righteous Brothers Man, how great would it be if these two guys were the Righteous Brothers? Problem with this theory is that there's nobody sitting around them. The girls would be swooning all over them, and yes, when I say "girls" I really mean "old ladies in the bleachers at a Cubs spring training practice."

• The Everly Brothers They both look a little too tall to be the Everly Brothers, but you never know. Again, not likely, as there are no guitars around them, and no girls swooning. Yes, "girls" still equals "old ladies in the bleachers at a Cubs spring training practice."

• Bonafide G-Men OK, here's the scene: practice has just ended and the players are walking off the field in clusters, joking and making plans for dinner. G-Men #1 and #2 walk down out of the bleachers and up to a random player, flicking cigarettes out of their mouths and pulling out notebooks. They say they just have some questions and the player gets real jumpy (cue fast-tempo bongo roll, to build suspense). The G-Men tell him to cool it, the player freaks and makes a break for it, and G-Man #1 pulls out a walkie-talkie and calls for back-up (cue horns hitting the first hook of the theme song). The scene freezes for a split-second and the title comes up "FOOT CHASE!" Then it goes back to the action. I'm thinking real late-Sixties, early-Seventies cop show, full of tense drama and action-packed, uh, action sequences. Oh, so it would turn out that the random player was really a petty numbers runner who would cave in interrogation and squeal on the mafia boss. Or something. It would be different week to week.

• Team Executives or Scouts Snooze. Seriously, who wears a sportscoat and black slacks to a spring training practice?

Or maybe they're not in the stands at all, but are:

• Tiny Devil and Angel, perched on Burt Hooton's shoulder It's a stretch, mainly because a), they'd travel with him throughout his pitching motion, and b), they're not technically perched on Burt's shoulder. I bet, though, that if he were standing up they'd be right there, leaning in to tell him a dirty joke.


Andy said...

Wow, this card is eerily similar to Terry McGriff's 1988 Topps card which also has two sharp-dressed men in the background, in a similar pose.

Why, it's Clark! said...

Well, the C ubs do train in Arizona. Maybe they're Men In Black who called in sick that day to the home office in Roswell, only to be busted 35 years later.

jont said...

That is a cool card. Those dudes look like potentael assassins, about to head over to the gravelly slope. I remember Burt had a lousy stretch with my lowly Rangers ...