Woody the Lion and Me, A St. Paddys Day tale

It’s the eve of St. Paddy’s Day 2018, in the most Irish town in America, Boston, and what better day to have an eve (small e) on than a Friday depending on the Eve (capital E) any day could be a fine one. And so, I have decided to tell you a story, an Irish story it’s one of many I have but this one happens to be true, pass the bottle, please. I was sitting in the game room occasionally known as the conference room of a radio station one day as we drank a few beers hit a few shots of Jack Daniels back and smoked a few illegals and no not aliens. We were talking about nationalities. It seems everyone had a bit of Irish on them this day even a guy named Feinberg (I used an alias for him) So finally after a few more beer and shots it was my turn to tell my nationality, pass the bottle, please. I started with the strongest two and that was as far as I got. I was never able to add and a little of this and little of that nationality. There was a guy there with thick long red hair and a bushy red beard, a very Irish lad indeed named O’Rourke (I made that name up for him, I think), pass the bottle, please. O’Rourke looked a lot like the original cowardly lion from The Wizard of Oz. So finally, the bottle and my turn rolled around, time for me to lay claim to my birthrights and I began to proudly announce that I was half, wait, before I get to that did I tell you that Feinberg, not their real name looked a lot like Woody Allen, and I didn’t make that up or  what O’Rourke looked like, don’t reread if you forgotten he looked like the Cowardly Lion from The Wizard of Oz.  So, my turn. Yes, my turn to drink, toke and talk, if I still could? And of course I can, I’m a highly rained Ofessional Brewdcaster. And if you have read and followed me this far I’ll bet you’re saying this better be worth it, well it’s not you can stop now.

So here we are, Woody the Lion and Me on the eve of March 17, which is supposedly the day of St. Patrick’s death.  I’ve never been sure why we celebrate that, dying doesn’t sound like party time to me. And now it’s my turn to proclaim my DNA results, I am, I said proudly part Irish and part Cherokee Indian. At this, Woody felt faint as the lion stood up with red hair and red beard and eyes ablaze and said, “My God man you’re an alcoholic looking for a place to happen”. To which I replied, and I found it, pass the bottle, please.

 

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Heroes

It will be easy for some people, likely many people to think I’m re-posting this in a see I told you so manner and on some level, that may be true.When I first published it I got a lot of grief about it from people saying I was defending a thug, a gang member, and a killer. What I was trying to say then and what I am trying to say now is we should never rush to judgment of anyone and especially our so-called heroes when they disappoint us. This link is the up-to-date news about Aaron Hernandez and my blog from April follows. http://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nfl/aaron-hernandez-lawyer-brain-showed-severe-case-of-cte/ar-AAsjSlj?OCID=ansmsnnews11

We place our heroes on pedestals, athletes because they can catch or run or hit a ball better than anyone else, movie stars because they can deliver a line written by someone else better than anyone else, or in the case of some actors like an Eastwood or Stallone because they can grimace or groan better than anyone else. We place them all on high and kneel before a throne called the box office. We pay them ridiculous amounts of money and let them live fairy-tale lives, but god help them if they disappoint us by proving they are human, that they have feet of clay.

I am reminded of a scene from a good movie called My Favorite Year, released in 1982, starring a really good actor, Peter O’Toole. O’Toole plays an aging, swashbuckling actor named Allan Swann who, because he is also a raging drunk, is taken under the wing of a junior comedy writer named Benjy who has always looked up to the actor. When he learns that his hero has feet of clay, he starts to become disillusioned, and when Swann proclaims that he is not a hero, he is an actor, Benjy says he need heroes, needs them larger than life, needs to look up to them.

Benjy was right. We need real-life heroes. We all need someone to look up to, and we need heroes trying to save us, something we can believe in. When we find out they are not who we thought, that they have an Achilles heel, it totally disrupts our emotions, sending us head over heels into an “I can’t accept this” state of mind.

It may surprise many New Englanders, but there are people across America who have barely, if ever, heard of Aaron Hernandez. He was a hometown hero, and when he seemingly let us down, some turned on him with a vengeance. When news broke that he had apparently killed himself, many danced on his grave, forgetting that we were the ones who made him larger than life. It was our hard-earned dollars that gave him a $40 million a year contract, and it was our hero-worship that made him infallible.

I think we do need larger-than-life heroes, but we are not going to find them on the silver screen, the baseball diamond, or the football gridiron, and we don’t need to pay them ridiculous amounts of money. The real heroes are fire fighters, police, teachers, and doctors, to name just a few, and how about the amputee who carried his guide across the finish line at the Boston Marathon? Now that’s my idea of a hero. But I will not forget he is also human, not a god.

You may be convinced that Aaron Hernandez did it, but I am not convinced. I am convinced that he was a person with a multitude of emotional and mental issues and a victim of a system that would have rather had him play football than help him with his problems, as we knelt before a throne called the box office.