Sunday, March 21, 2010

Phor Phillies Phans

If you’re here because you’re interested in weight loss, you may want to move on to the next post.  But if you’re here for the other themes: sports, Philly roots, and the wonder of brackets, you’ll recognize immediately why I just had to link to The Phield, which is holding a tournament of 65 Phillies blogs, with winners determined by fan voting.  (Yes, sixty-five. Who knew?)

The only ones I have read on occasion are The 700 Level* and Crashburn Alley.  “Crashburn” of course pays homage to legendary Phillies centerfielder and longtime broadcaster Richie Ashburn.  Ashburn’s pal Harry Kalas is likewise honored with Long Drive, Swing and a Long Drive, That Balls Outta Here, and High Hopes.

My favorite Phillies blog name is The Curse of Billy Penn, which refers to the 25 year period, from the 76ers in 1983 to the Phillies 2008, when 100 combined pro sports seasons passed without a Philly championship.  Superstition attributed the quarter century of agony to One Liberty Place’s violation of the unwritten rule that no building exceed the top of the William Penn statue atop City Hall.  Construction workers placed a short replica of the statue atop the new Comcast Center, lifting the “curse” in 2007, a year before the Phillies defeated the Rays. So a good blog name, but as a 13 seed, it’s not likely The Curse of Billy Penn will celebrate its own championship. 

* If you’ve read this far, I probably don’t need to explain that the 700 level was the infamous ring of cheap yellow seats atop (infamous) Veterans Stadium.  That’s where we usually sat.  When I first went to a game in 1978 with my Dad and Grandpa Spicciati, general admission was $2.50 for adults and .50 for kids.  My last trip to the 700 level was with Shannon, where we were witness to a touching scene – unique to Philadelphia  – where a mom and dad were teaching their three year old daughter to boo.  (Hey, you can’t leave the transmission of important cultural norms to the public schools.)

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