Sunday, December 24, 2000

A Christmas poem

        'Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the town,
        not a soul was in torment. Not even Mike Brown.
        The Bengals' beleaguered, much-demonized boss
        pored over his record, could not find a loss.

        The Griffeys were gleeful, both Junior and Senior,
        befitting their gifts. Or Sean Casey's demeanor.
        They tallied their blessings, subtracted their woe,
        decided their grudges were all long ago.

        The Bearcats and Muskies resolved to spread cheer,
        and found common ground in the virtues of beer.
        They toasted Skip Prosser; they lionized Huggs,
        forgetting their friction amid frosty mugs.

        They cheered Satterfield till their palms were all smartin'
        and stifled the urge to lament Kenyon Martin.
        They described David West as the Prince of the Paint
        and praised referees for their whistling restraint.

        While RedHawks made merry for sweet Santa Coles,
        UC gave us proof it belonged in the bowls.
        With playbooks prepared for each new Marshall trick,
        the Bearcats concluded: “It must be St. Rick.”

        The Ducks grew so mighty they came to beg pardons
        for thrashing their rivals at quaint Cincy Gardens.
        Nick Vehr and his ilk, on Olympian quest,
        continued undaunted. We wish them the best.

        Each party did prosper, each faction had fun,
        each new Bengal lineman could bench press a ton.
        Each dreamer encouraged -- for dreaming is free.
        Each UC hoops hero would get a degree.

        No prices were raised; no new taxes were needed.
        No arenas sat empty; no scalpers were heeded.
        No problems with parking; no lines at the john.
        No “Who Let The Dogs Out?” no Celine Dion.

        No national anthems with divas who trill.
        No $5 beers; no concession stand swill.
        No nine-inning, four-hour, one-sided snores.
        No replay review -- not unless someone scores.

        Each millionaire Red and most thousandaire 'Clones
        exchanged season's greetings on cellular phones.
        They faxed salutations to comrades and foes,
        and E-mailed Bud Selig: “Be kind to Pete Rose.”

        Said Larkin, sage shortstop, “Though cynics might scoff,
        should it help the team, I shall gladly lead off.”
        So moved by that spirit was fleet Pokey Reese
        that he practiced the bunt till his bat bore a crease.

        Ron Oester hung stockings with craftsmanlike care
        and withheld his hammer from Jim Bowden's hair.
        He busied his brain finding Bob Boone more runs,
        ignoring advisors who'd “stick to your guns.”

        Then Bowden brought tidings of unbounded joy:
        Carl Lindner went yachting, and heard an, “Ahoy.”
        He rescued a raft off the coast of Havana,
        and found seven pitchers who'd work for bananas.

        While dashing and dancing and prancing through snow
        Corey Dillon vindicated Dick LeBeau.
        Scott Mitchell passed like a man part myth,
        but proved none the better than Akili Smith.

        Takeo made tackles to make grown men cringe,
        while Peter Warrick blossomed in a touchdown binge.
        Convinced that his squad had rekindled its fire,
        Mike Brown bid goodbye: “It's my time to retire.”


Sports Stories
- SULLIVAN: A Christmas poem
DAUGHERTY: A lesson in living life
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