Monday, January 14, 2013

Vol. 3 No. 1 Welcome to 1963


The last entry was from the December 1962 issue of T&FNews. One would think that the next would be January 1963. One would be logical, but wrong. A little history is necessary here.
Back in the day when your hard working reporter was but a pup, the subscription to Track and Field News came in regularly. Each issue was prized and saved. Over the years the collection grew. Marriage and four children followed, competitive running stopped and coaching began, but the issues continued to be saved religiously. No issue was discarded. No issue was marked, torn or folded. They were lovingly placed in a cardboard box which became two cardboard boxes, then three and finally a couple large Rubbermaid containers. They weren't cataloged, but they were there.
Then, maybe 15 years ago, the historical significance of the collection drove me to pull the container from the shed, bring it into the house and catalog the issues chronologically with manilla folders for each year. There they sat, an unread history of our sport.
Remember the baseball cards you collected and stored in shoe boxes under your bed? When you got older you looked at them less until one day you looked at them no more. But it was still comforting to know that your George Kell card was right there between the Johnny Lipon card and the Al Kaline card. The T&FN collection was like that. I never looked at the issues, but it was nice to know they were there. Give them away? Are you insane? They were like George's books that were left at the girlfriend's apartment in a Seinfeld episode. He wanted them back. Jerry questioned why since he had already read them. “Because they are my books!” That is how I felt about the magazines. They were going to the grave with me. Upon my demise my kids would either throw them out or sell them two for a nickle from a card table in the front yard.
Retirement came and with it free time. One day in a burst of altruism, I opened the container and pulled out the oldest issue. Warmed by the glow of Parry O”Brien and Emil Zatopek, I scribbled a summary and sent it to the only person I knew would care: long time friend, now co-blogger and master researcher, George Brose. His enthusiasm prompted the sending of another synopsis. With this George was off and running and the blog was born.

Told you that to tell you this. There is no January 1963. Indeed there is no 1963. I have 1960, 1961, 1962, 1964, 1965, etc, but no 1963. I didn't unsubscribe for the year. Logically it has to be somewhere. The shed was explored. Then each folder was opened to see if somehow 1963 had escaped and was hiding in 1969 or 1970. Cabinets, shelves, drawers and boxes were carefully examined. No 1963. Finally I was reduced to considering unlikely-but-I-have-looked-everywhere-else locations: the freezer,  the toilet tank, the woodpile, the box that contains wrapping paper from Christmases past. Found a lot of stuff I hadn't seen in years, but no 1963.

I have two ex-wives; evil, vindictive women who preyed upon my good nature and naivete. Could it be that one of them purloined that particular folder in the hopes that it would cause me anguish years down the road? While both have shown the meanness of spirit capable of such an act, it is unlikely. Neither possesses a passive-aggressive nature, preferring instead the full frontal attack of alimony and home seizure. No, undoubtedly that folder still exists...... somewhere......somewhere unbeknownst to me.
I have dreaded the time when I would have to share this with you, our faithful readers. Back in 1959 I thought surely I would find it. The uneasiness I felt in 1960 and 1961 grew to desperation as the months flew by in 1962. This is my dog ate my homework moment. I do not have 1963. It is unlikely to ever be reported upon.

So there it is. As far as this blog is concerned, there is no 1963, a harsh reality if this was one of your glory years, but in the ensuing half century I am sure you have learned the lesson that time teaches all, life is not fair.
Coming up soon: January 1964.

Editor's note

If someone could rescue Roy from his anguish it would be much appreciated.  Is there a soul out there willing to put out a  'loaner' to Roy?   Just one year  1963 of Track and Field News will keep this blog intact, otherwise we may find ourselves reading synopses of Ladies Home Journal or Readers' Digest.   Contact me via email if you have a set you would be willing to share and be assured of getting sent back to you.   

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