Good morning and greetings, Yankee and Giants’ fans. It’s a wonderful time of the year for the lovers of sports, as we’ve got the baseball postseason, NFL football and the NBA preseason. It certainly makes for a well-rounded lifestyle of viewing and booing. Throw in the new TV season and it’s eyeball ecstasy. All I can say is, God bless America and TiVo.
And speaking of America, today we celebrate Columbus Day, which means the kids are home from school and mattresses can be had for a really good price. But what do we really know about this man, whose given name at birth was Cristoforo Colombo? So in honor of the holiday and with the help of Angela W. La Fon from Yahoo’s Associated Content, let’s take a look at the Lieutenant Columbo of the open seas.
He was born in Genoa, Italy and as I child loved salami. He began a career as a seafarer at the age of fourteen and later supported himself by selling maps, charts and vaccum cleaners. He wanted to find a trade route to get to India and China because land travel was risky and he craved egg rolls and sweet and sour shrimp. He believed that Asia would be 2,400 miles west of Spain when, in fact, 10,000 nautical miles lay between Europe and Asia. In the words of Agent Maxwell Smart, “sorry about that, chief. I was this close.”
Columbus first went to King John of Portugal with his idea to find a westward sea passage to Asia, but after months of waiting, the answer was no thank you and please put him on his do-not-call list. He then went to Queen Isabella of Spain, but her response to Columbus’s idea was that his price was too high, that he wanted too many ships and that he was nuttier than an almond rocha.
Young Christopher came back with a counter offer. He said if he reached the Indies, he wanted a title, a table of contents, a coat of arms, a light jacket and one tenth of all profits for Spain. I won’t say the Queen rushed into her decison, as it took her six years to agree to his deal and then couldn’t remember his email address.
Spain wanted to gain supremacy over other European countries so she and King Ferdinand accepted Columbus’ plans after taking out travel insurance. Columbus, who had given up and opened a medical marijuana dispensary, was four miles out of town when the Queen’s courier caught up with him and shared the news, weather and local sports.
It wasn’t easy to get the money or the ships, but it was even harder to find a crew and a chef who made vegan dinners. Many sailors and tire salesman still believed that the earth was flat and that at some point a ship would hit a waterfall and fall off of the side of the earth. I felt the same way the first time I boarded the Staten Island Ferry.
A royal decree on April 30, 1492 ordered the suspension of judicial proceedings against criminals and Wall Street bankers who agreed to sail with Christopher Columbus. Even so, only four prisoners and a couple of day traders took advantage of this offer. He set sail with ninety sailors, some dramamine and the first season of “The Love Boat” on DVD.
Christopher Columbus’ first voyage with the Nina, Pinta, the Santa Maria and the SS Minnow began on August 3,1492, which I believe was a Thursday. On October 12, a sailor on the Pinta shouted “Tierra!” or “Land!” Columbus and his crew were actually seeing the island of San Salvador, some 375 miles off of the coast of Florida. He thought he was in the Indies or Cleveland and called the natives Indians.
He claimed the island for the King and Queen of Spain and Laker center Pau Gasol. Columbus discovered many of the Caribbean Islands, including Honduras and Panama, along with parts of South America, Central America and Club Hedonism in Jamaica.
Even though he made three return trips west, Christopher Columbus never actually stepped foot on the mainland of North America. The first European explorer to realize the discovered lands were not part of Asia was Amerigo Vespucci, from whose name the word “America” derives and who penned the lyric, “I’ve been to the desert on a horse with no name, it felt good to get out of the rain.”
With the passing years, Columbus grew very religious. He claimed to be hearing divine voices and loved to sing along to early recordings of Tony Bennet. Till his death, he believed that he had toured to Asia during his voyages and that some day the Cubs would again win another World Series.
In 1866, in honor of this Italian Stallion, the Italian population of New York organized a celebration of the discovery of America and chicken parmesan. In 1968, much to the delight of Sleep Train, which is your ticket to a better night’s sleep, Columbus Day was declared a federal public holiday on the second Monday in October. But on the downside, because Columbus has been thought to have killed and enslaved native Americans of Haiti, some people are rejecting the holiday, but are still willing to participate in the red tag sales events.
Moving on to the photo garden, when I saw the macro colors in these dahlias, I knew I had to bring one more corsage to this cyber dance. Much like the establishing shots on the new “Hawaii Five-0″ series or watching my son drain three-pointers, I never tire of their beauty. So book em’ Dano. And here’s a shout out to my favorite new fall flower, Grace Park, who hangs ten as Five-O’s Kona Kalakaua, who we all know is Officer Chin Ho Kelly’s niece.
On to some late nite follies. “Obama has been now finally getting on the campaign trail trying to help [Democrats]. Their big plan is a series of what they call backyard visits where the President speaks to people in their backyards in Middle America. Because nothing calms the fears of Middle Americans like having a black man suddenly appear in your backyard.” –Bill Maher “President Obama has been meeting with voters in what he calls ‘backyard chats.’ He’s held these in real people’s backyards. You know something, I think all politicians should talk to people in their backyards. Then you could take what they say and spread it on the lawn. Yesterday President Obama told voters that he’s a Christian. But you see how Fox News reported it? They said Obama admits he’s a follower of the bearded radical from the Middle East.” –Jay Leno
“President Obama had said if the stimulus bill passed, companies like Caterpillar would hire a lot of Americans. Caterpillar has announced that they are hiring hundreds of workers, in China. And if you call the White House to complain, you get the hotline in India. There was a very emotional send-off for Rahm Emanuel at the White House on Friday morning. Rahm Emanuel cried because he’s leaving the White House, and President Obama cried because he’s still there. Donald Trump may run president. Is that a good idea? Haven’t enough Americans already been told, ‘You’re fired’?” –Jay Leno
“EA Sports released a new version of the video game ‘NBA Jam’ that features Obama, Biden, Bush, and Cheney. Bush and Cheney play the first half, then Obama and Biden try to come back from a 6 billion point deficit. A Senate has passed a new bill that requires TV stations to lower the volume level on commercials. This is great, a hundred of the most powerful people in the nation have managed to do the same thing my remote does.” –Jimmy Fallon “They say Osama bin Laden is struggling to stay relevant. Welcome to the club. In his latest audio tape, bin Laden is talking about global warming. If he thinks it’s hot now, wait until he gets to hell.” –David Letterman
So that’s our show. Birthday wishes go out today to my old Fabulous Forum pal, Lynn Hock, who is the Jeannie Buss of Laker fans and taught Kobe how to pump fake. And if you’ve never seen an 80 ton blue whale or Orson Welle, stay tuned to this channel.
So enjoy the ongoing baseball playoffs and we’ll catch you in the bullpen. Hope to see you next week at Open Studios. Aloha, mahalo and later, Tim Lincecum fans.