Dodger Thoughts

Jon Weisman's outlet for dealing psychologically with the Los Angeles Dodgers, baseball and life

Month: August 2020

Rewatching James at 15
and remembering 1970s TV

James at 15 premiered on NBC before my 10th birthday, but I was the kind of kid — I think a lot of us were — who craved TV that seemed more grown-up than I was. In fact, looking it up right now, I see that Soap premiered on ABC eight days later, and that might well have been the most controversial series of the 1970s, or at least since the debut of All in the Family. I remember watching a report about Soap on Eyewitness News earlier that evening, warning of the risqué material, but that didn’t keep me from watching the first episode that night. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it here before, but when we moved into our new house in Woodland Hills in late 1972, just as I was turning 5, the three Weisman kids each got their own bedrooms and their own TV sets. For real. Yes, we had it good. 

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Video: 1960s Celebrity All-Star Game at Dodger Stadium

Somehow, I had never seen this before, so I’m appreciative to Ken Levine for passing it along. From more than 50 years ago, it’s a Celebrity All-Star softball Game at Dodger Stadium, and as these things go, the rosters are impressive, with celebrities including Woody Allen, Peter Falk, James Garner, Robert Loggia, Ryan O’Neal and Dick Shawn, and active major leaguers like Roberto Clemente, Don Drysdale, Harmon Killebrew, Willie Mays, Willie McCovey, Brooks Robinson and Maury Wills (in his Pirates uniform). Leo Durocher and Milton Berle are the managers. 

Throw in Vin Scully for the play-by-play (albeit with a rather lugubrious Jerry Lewis as his partner), and you’ve got yourself a ballgame. 

A people too defiant for masks

It’s pretty clear that large swaths of the Los Angeles population — diverse in age, gender, class and ethnicity — have rejected wearing masks in proximity with others for reasons that have nothing to do with politics. 

I’m not a sociologist, scientist or pollster, but I just have trouble believing that the high percentage of people in this town I’ve observed going without them, even as they cross well within range of other humans, are all doing so out of allegience to party or a party leader. There is something much more basic at play.  

They say you can’t fight City Hall, but you also can’t fight the people who behave as they want in the face of so much reason to behave differently in a civil society. 

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