Tuesday, August 20, 2013

"These Idiots Are Ruining Us!"

There are times when reality and imagination blur, times of wishful thinking. Today is one of those times, so enjoy the following upshot. GS
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                              Aug. 20, 2013 

Hall of Fame Releases Official Stance on the PED Era and the Players Involved

-- Dedication set for new life-size sculpture to represent players of baseball’s PED era.

(COOPERSTOWN, NY) – Taking advantage of a timely burst of confusion caused by the simultaneous 211-game suspension and return to major league action of Alex Rodriguez, Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson announced on August 16 that the Hall has commissioned a new sculpture for a symbolic location in the museum.

The life-size work, titled “The Unknown Juicer,” will be located literally inches away from the plaque gallery, immediately outside its entrance. “It will be bolted to the floor,” Idelson noted in his remarks to the press. “Once you’re in that spot, you’re not getting into that plaque gallery, no matter how tantalizingly close it is.”

“For years,” Idelson said, “People have been asking, ‘How does the Hall of Fame really feel about steroids? Do you wish it never happened? Don’t you wish that everyone could be considered for election baggage-free?’ The general answer is yes, it would be wonderful if we could go back and start over and find a way to get plaques for the all-time hits leader, the all-time home run leader, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, and others. But we can’t go back, we have to move forward, and this new sculpture will symbolize the Hall’s traditional emphasis on integrity as a prime criterion for enshrinement.”

Idelson added that many museum staff members have complained about the incessant inquiries by “those damn tourists” about steroids and the infinite number of possible results of future Hall of Fame elections. “Now our guides can simply tell them, ‘check out the statue and you’ll have your answer.’ Between the image and the text, there will be no mistaking our position.”

The winning design was submitted by sculptor Stanley Bleifeld, several of whose works are already on display at the Hall of Fame, most notably his triple study of Jackie Robinson, Lou Gehrig, and Roberto Clemente. Other finalists whose designs were considered included high-profile artists like Christopher Lloyd Wright, Gus Rodinsky, Eve Tartar, and Washington Borglum.

“The Unknown Juicer” will be wearing an anonymous uniform and will have no identifying facial features. Above the neck will be only a traditional ballplayer’s smirk, a sweat-band around the forehead, and headphones covering the ears. Head tilted back, he is about to start chugging the contents of a bottle marked “good juice.” With his other hand he is doing a wrist-curl using a small weight, and cradled under that arm is a carton marked “even better juice.” A hypodermic needle protrudes from his right buttocks.

The over-developed juicer will have a neck wider than his brain; bulging biceps and loose skin under his arms; chest muscles popping his uniform buttons; an apparently dislocated hip; and untied shoelaces since he can’t bend over. Sticking out of his pocket is a barely visible check stub for $30 million.

“We’re excited about the artistic as well as the thematic properties of this new work,” wrote Hall of Fame Chairman of the Board Jane Forbes Clark in a statement read by Idelson. “Art has always been a motivating force in the Clark family, and we have tried to incorporate it in everything we own. The Hall of Fame museum is no exception. There are now five statues in the courtyard between the museum and CooperPark, and four other pieces in the museum—unless you count that silly ‘holy cow’ at the base of the staircase.”

Idelson announced that the new statue will be unveiled at a ceremony on Saturday, November 9, to be attended by Commissioner Bud Selig among many other indignitaries. At that time, the text accompanying “The Unknown Juicer” will be made public as well. Idelson promised his audience, “You’re going to love that text. We’re taking a stand here, folks. These idiots are ruining us! We didn’t even have a thousand people at our induction this year. And the election process is going to be a mess for a long time to come, unless some miracle consensus appears out of thin air.

“Thumbs up or thumbs down, either one is fine with us. Meanwhile, out here in limbo, the Hall of Fame is going ahead as if the thumbs down will continue. And we’re going to deal with it head-on. When we got the Barry Bonds ‘Asterisk Ball,’ we put it on display with a lengthy, sensible label which emphasized the historical context of the ball’s appearance. But you had to go out to the end of the second floor and find it inside the one locker devoted to the San Francisco Giants in a room with 30 lockers, in order to get the message. What were we thinking? By putting ‘The Unknown Juicer’ where you can’t miss it as you pause before entering the most hallowed room in baseball, we will get our message across.”


For more information on the sculpture dedication, please contact Gabriel Schechter.