Tuesday, April 17, 2012
the last book I ever reread (Ball Four, excerpt five)
from Jim Bouton's Ball Four:
I'm not sure I'm going to like Don Mincher. I keep hearing that big southern accent of his. It's prejudice, I know, but everytime I hear a southern accent I think: stupid. A picture of George Wallace pops into my mind. It's like Lenny Bruce saying he could never associate a nuclear scientist with a southern accent. I suppose there are people in baseball who are as turned off by my northern accent, and I've often thought that the best way to get through professional baseball is never to let on you have an education.
Well, Mincher was talking about going to see a Johnny Cash show, and I imagine when he talks about Johnny Cash it's like the Negro players talking about James Brown. Lots of times in the clubhouse you'll have a radio on and every once in a while it gets switched back and forth between a soul-music station and a country-western station. If you're going good you get to hear your kind of music. In the Yankee clubhouse western music dominated. In the Horace Clark Memorial Lounge you heard the music from the Virgin Islands and soul music. In the trainer's room, where Mickey Mantle was king, you'd hear the Buck Owenses and Conway Twittys.