December 6, 2011

1897: Special Instructions To Players

29 comments:

Rasputin said...

I find the most intriguing thing about this to be the note at the bottom that it is unmailable.

Why pray tell would it be unmailable?

Anthony Comstock.

I'm rather glad I didn't live then.

Brad said...

Three thoughts and one esoteric reference...

1) Very funny to see these quotes in print compared to our sanitized media world. (Does anyone think we can't fill in the blanks when someone writes "f***"?)
2) Those guys really knew how to cuss.
3) If this "rule" is still in effect, Pedroia is in a world of hurt.

And... wonder if Charles Keating was heading this committee...

Amy said...

Um, this is not for real, I assume. I know how gullible I am, so I am trying hard NOT to fall for this one!

Pretty funny, either way.

johngoldfine said...

Amy--it's hard to believe it's real, but that reproduced image, with its clear fold lines and 'unmailable' tag, makes me want to believe it's real.

If not real, the language strikes a fine note of verisimilitude--both the cursing, some of which has an old-timey air, and the delightful, outraged boilerplate legalese of the League officials.

"[I]ndecent and infamous invention of depravity" makes me grin ear to ear!

allan said...

In trying to find out when this was uncovered, I found that I had posted it before - almost exactly four years ago!

It came from the estate of baseball historian Al Kermisch, in a collection of Baltimore-related memorabilia, circa 1900.

(Does anyone think we can't fill in the blanks when someone writes "f***"?)

See Louis CK's routine about "the 'n-word'".

Jim said...

I keep telling folks that the dialogue in "Deadwood" is authentic.

laura k said...

that reproduced image, with its clear fold lines and 'unmailable' tag, makes me want to believe it's real.

If not real, the language strikes a fine note of verisimilitude-


I thought the same thing: this has got to be real, and if it's not, it's damn well done.

Jere said...

I didn't remember that you posted this in '07--and I commented then! (I have no idea what my joke was a reference to since the video I linked is gone.)

It's funny how both times Amy commented thinking it was fake. And while last time SHE made the Pedroia's in trouble joke, this time Brad did.

efd said...

Lucky for FY he plays in the American League. :)

Benjamin said...

(I have no idea what my joke was a reference to since the video I linked is gone.)

It was a video of a two legged dog.

Jere said...

"It was a video of a two legged dog."

Ah, thanks. I only barely remember that, too.

GK said...

Sock,
Off topic but I was wondering if you had got to know about this radio piece.
http://onlyagame.wbur.org/2010/10/23/earliest-baseball-portrait

I heard on NPR a while ago. It is about a baseball portrait from the 1800's and that person who found it republished in the (19)70's in an art magazine, and was looking to find the source.

allan said...

I've never seen that picture. At first glance, it doesn't seem very convincing.

Benjamin said...

Those could just as easily be sideways cricket bats.

Amy said...

Jere, I have no memory of seeing this or commenting on it. Oy vey!!

So...it is real? It's just hard to believe that they printed all those specific examples---it just seems like a joke. And with modern technology, fold lines can easily be created to make it look authentic...or the text could have been altered.

So I remain skeptical. :)

johngoldfine said...

Amy, when I looked back at the 2007 post, I had no memory of it or of the fact that I'd commented or that I was even involved in JOSworld back then,

So, if not in good company, at least you have company.

Amy said...

John, it seems Jere also didn't remember the post or commenting, and he isn't as senior as you and I! So...what the hell? I guess Allan can just keep recycling old posts, and most of us wouldn't even notice.

If we are like this now, what does it mean for the future?

Grant said...

That is EPIC.

Jere said...

"Jere also didn't remember the post or commenting"

And I remember all kinds of meaningless crap! You know what my excuse to myself is on this one? Too recent! I am setting up to be a classic Alzheimer's patient in a few decades. My brain is like my computer (and attic). It's full of old shit, and if I don't free up some space I'm gonna crash permanently. I'm gonna be sitting in a home drooling saying "1917 White Sox over Giants, 1918 Red Sox over Cubs, 1919 Reds over White Sox...." "What'd you have for breakfast today, Jere?" "I have no idea..."

Jere said...

I found a whole lot of articles from 1897-99 talking about these meetings in Philly and the league trying to clean up the language and stuff, so if this is fake, the person did their research.

laura k said...

Who could possibly remember every post of any blog - no matter how old you are? I dislike my declining memory, too, but come on, let's be realistic. We all read a lot - everything tiny bit of incidental reading can't be filed away for instant recall. Give yourselves a break, eh.

Amy said...

True, Laura, but this just seems like the kind of thing---so outrageous---that we might remember. It's funny that even Allan did not remember that he had posted it 4 years ago. Believe me, I am not obsessing about memory loss---just accepting it as part of aging.

Like Jere, my long term memory is still remarkably good. I can still remember the names of most of the kids in my first grade class photo, though I have not seen them in many years, but I could not tell you the names of students I had two years ago for the life of me.

And don't dare ask me about some player who played one or two seasons for the Red Sox even a year or two ago!

Jere said...

Yeah but "I'll make you suck my ass"? That shit's inDELible!

laura k said...

I'm sure I wouldn't be able to name a single person from my first grade class. I would only know a handful from high school! But then, I tried to forget almost everyone as quickly as possible. Doing massive amounts of drugs in high school wasn't real good for the memory, either. :)

allan said...

Jere: I want a full report (post) about the attempts to curb the players' naughty language. (I have access to The Sporting News archives through SABR.)

allan said...

John Thorn mentions this announcement in his book "Baseball In The Garden Of Eden" (pp. 246-47), though his admittedly "considerably expurgated paragraph" quotes only the first insult. It was unanimously passed by the owners on March 1898.

johngoldfine said...

but I could not tell you the names of students I had two years ago for the life of me.

Dear...uh, Amy,

I can't remember the names of the students I had last semester!

johngoldfine said...

Note to Allan: please re-post this item early December of 2011. Amy and I will be eager to discuss its admissability....

Amy said...

John, I actually do forget most of their names by the time the next semester rolls around unless they were particularly active in class or I have had them for more than one course. I just didn't want to sound TOO doddering! I have a bad enough reputation around here as it is for not being able to remember shit.