SORRY, Colts fans. That wasn't the greatest game ever played. It was the greatest game ever played in football, but the greatest game ever played in sports was 40 years ago today. It took place at the Polo Grounds in New York, and the Giants won the National League pennant over the Dodgers, 5-4.
Bobby Thompson, of course, won it with a homer off Ralph Branca, while announcer Russ Hodges shouted, "The Giants win the pennant! The Giants win the pennant! . . ." It was a shout heard 'round the world (as we knew it then). Even in other-worldly Montana we heard it.
Writing in the Sunday New York Times, sports columnist George Vecsey explained why this was the greatest game ever played. The conditions were right, much different from today. The Giants-Dodgers rivalry was a bitter one. Today's sports rivalries, Vecsey says accurately, are "guest attractions." There really was no tomorrow, not a 16-tier playoff system. The game was played in daylight, which is the way baseball ought to be played.
And it had to be baseball. Branca couldn't call for a fair catch. The Dodgers couldn't be running out the clock between beer commercials. It had to be one pitcher against one batter -- one pitch that culminated the greatest game ever played.
TOP 10 PROVISIONS IN THE LOIS LANE/SUPERMAN PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENT (from the "Late Night with David Letterman"):
10. Joint custody of Jimmy Olsen.
9. Won't wear same color tights at social gatherings.
8. He has to clean up after Superdog.
7. No kryptonite knick-knicks.
6. Lois must have Batman tattoo surgically removed.
5. Superman must reverse Earth's rotation to go back in time and soaps.
3. Christmas day with her folks/Protonium Eve with his.
2. In the event of a divorce Lois gets the Plaza Hotel.
And [drum roll] the No. 1 provision . . .
1. Superman prohibited from using X-Ray vision at beach.
TOP 5 BIOSPHERE RULES (From the "Chronicle with Roy Bragg"):
5. Only biodegradable aerosol cans can be burned in daily trash fire.
4. No loud music or dancing because it bothers the tenants in the biosphere downstairs.
3. Biospherans can't press naked butts against glass walls.
2. No experimenting on the old guy.
1. If you want cable, you gotta pay for it.