What a day I had last Saturday. First, the Strawberry Festival parade, then the Lakers’ game. In between I had a haircut and whipped my 90-year old mother-in-law in a card game. I was 4-0 last Saturday.
First, I met Roger Williams, the Grand Marshal of the 52nd local parade. For you people born after 1955 he is called “Mr. Piano” and has written many hits including “Autumn Leaves,” “Born Free,” “Impossible Dream” “and Laura’s Theme.”As well as many others. The 86 year-old artist said he is playing better than ever.
I congratulated Gary Sunda, this year’s president of the Strawberry Festival Association, on a great weekend. The profits from the festival go to local charities. This year the total net will be about $400,000.
Of course there were many politicians, this being an election year, but it’s always a pleasure to sit with Bruce Broadwater’s family. Bruce wore his traditional Angels uniform so the universe is still in order.
Ed Arnold, a sportscaster and an old friend to me and especially to Garden Grove, looked great coming off some serious health issues.
I met up with Marilyn Tortolano to ride in our special Garden Grove Journal car. GGJ publisher, Jim Tortolano, walked up and down the parade route to take pictures for today’s issue.
Loretta Sanchez, congresswoman for the 47th District, actually walked the parade showing off before the election. Actually I’m just envious of her.
I say this every year, but I sincerely appreciate all the nice things you parade-watchers have to say to Marilyn and me as we rolled down Chapman Avenue and Euclid Street.
Several of you waived GGJ newspapers at us. One guy waived an iPad. Oh, that was Jim.
A lot of hard work is put into this publication every week, especially by Jim and Marilyn, so it is gratifying to hear and see the nice words and applause.
After the parade I had to rush to make a haircut appointment made months ago when Memorial Day weekend was hardly a thought. It’s refreshing to hear my hairdresser ask who was playing in some basketball game later that night. Hard to believe, isn’t it?
She is the type that uses her hands to talk. That made the wife and I late for our card game. We won and we did get out of there by 5:30 p.m. so I could get home to watch the Lakers’ game.
Guido favored the Suns in this one but the Lakers were able to pull it out. But it was not without the angst that someone told me was “fixed” into the games to make them exciting.
Knowing a little bit about the egos of both the players and owners, that would never happen. But the Lakers did squander big leads in the second half of games five and six, only to have Ron Artest come out as the star of both games.
Okay, okay, the real star, Kobe Bryant, made shots that I still don’t believe, and either does Suns head coach Alvin Gentry.
Both of us join millions of fans describing him as the best player today, by far. If you can see those shots in the fourth quarter of Saturday’s game on DVD, or any other three-letter device, see them. You will be in awe!
If the Lakers play like they have in the last two games, they will beat the hated Celtics in six games, starting tonight.
I just have to get in my two-cents worth on the injury to Kendry Morales. As you probably know, he hit a grand slam in the bottom of the10th inning to win it for the Angels, 5-1, over the Seattle Mariners last Saturday night.
As he came in to stomp on the plate, he slipped, or hit a teammates’ toe, and broke his leg. He’ll be out for the season.
There have been others hurt during celebrations. It’s time for the teams to address this problem.
How about how we did it in the prehistoric days: “Way to go, Ken,” we all yelled. Then we danced off the field.
Contact Don Alexander at Journaldon@aol.com.