The following is another “Have Fun or Get Out of the Way” column by Don Leighton and Mike Granlund and their alter egos, Lance Boyle and Billy Pirkola, which runs occasionally in The Superior Telegram.
I, Lance Boyle, being of unsound mind and questionable body, do hereby give a list of names for the readers to digest, discuss and stew upon. It is important to remember the advanced age of the author and give as much consideration as possible to diminished and failing memory.
Let us go back to those thrilling days of the 1970s and 80s when the North 58th Street and Superior Senior High School softball fields were filled every night of the week with league play and most weekends with tournaments.
Without further introduction, here are, in no particular order, the top 50 men’s slow pitch softball players I have played with or against in my undistinguished career:
Brant Hannula, Jimmy Hannula, Danny Hannula, Billy Graskey, Billy Stream, John “Pizza” Peterson, Danny Crist, Willie Glonek, Steve Hendry, Jeff Liebaert, Jons Besch, Bobby Peterson, Denny VanMassenhove, Scott Savoy, Ted Braatz, John Fechtelkotter,
Greg Campbell, Dave Lundquist, Jeff Nelson, Johnny Olson, Bobby Steen, Jerry Schmid, John Heffner, Sid Oswskey, Tom Wasserman, Mark Peterson, Steve Olson, John Windt, Andy Lind, Roger Smith, Gil Botten, Bill Bombich, Greg Lien, Tim Hendry,
Mark Wasserman, Larry Banks, Billy Flynn, Jim Gerzic, Roger Plachta, Mike Sather, Pat Paquette, Scott Craker, Scott Peterson, Bob Blake, Bill Blust, Greg Knoll, Mike Nelson, Greg Tinker, Frank Olson and Tim Moder.
I had the pleasure of playing with many great ballplayers who are still great friends. In 1978, my team, President’s Bar, played in the Class A National ASA Tournament in Pevely, Mo. I was also fortunate to play with the Front Page in the nationals in Mansfield, Ohio. We won a couple of games in each tournament and played against some pretty incredible players. It’s a shame that softball has almost died out, and I consider myself lucky to still have so many friends and memories from those wonderful years.
I know I will feel badly if I have forgotten someone, and I know I have. Because of my limited memory, I need the help of the print and online readers to send me their choices for the top softball players they remember.
Please send me your top 10 players who you feel were the absolute best that you played with or witnessed. During August, a list will be compiled and the reader’s choices will be revealed.
When the reader’s choice on the best 10 players of all-time is revealed, Lance will, with trepidation, reveal his top 10. Because of the amazing influence on society and all things related, Lance feels his team may, if picked now, muddy the waters for the readers.
Have at it, readers. Tell me I’m crazy and have no clue. I have thick skin so whatever you think of my top 50 choices, send me your list at my e-mail or mail to the Telegram, attention Kenny Olson (firstname.lastname@example.org). Thanks for your help.
Boyling in the Pirkolator
I’m always on the search to meet new “best friends” each day. One of my goals in life is to say hello to 10 people every day that I have not met before. Many times I get strange looks, but most of the time I have great conversations with those I meet.
On Wednesday, while at Regis in the mall being made to look beautiful by my personal beauty consultant, Traci, I had the pleasure of meeting Kathie Otterino. She was waiting for me to finish up. While my work is never done (she looked better than Lance before her appointment and after his), we conversed for a few minutes.
She works at the Aqua Hut in the mall, is from Cloverland and is a Northwestern graduate whose maiden name was Kubbera. She is married to Russ and their two kids, Vincent and Emily, have left the nest. That leaves Russ and Kathie with their seven donkeys, horses, chickens, dogs, cats and fish.
I asked if the fish are kept in water. She said yes. I believe this may have been when she began to wonder about my mental state.
They just welcomed a new addition to the menagerie, Felix the miniature donkey.
Another nice person from the investigative reporting of Lance Boyle.
Opinions and/or story ideas can be e-mailed to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org