Tag Archives: “Field of Dreams”

Good News Friday: A hero of the El Paso shooting saved lives.”Field of Dreams” site to host an MLB game, and that’s awesome. And a tennis star plays ping-pong with kids for an hour

And a Happy Friday, my fellow Earthlings (isn’t that what Mork used to call people on “Mork and Mindy?” Yes, I’m old.)

Hope you all are having a delightful August Friday, we are a mere two weeks away from the start of the U.S. Open, so I’m incredibly excited.

Lots of good stuff to tell you about this week, first a story from the horrific El Paso mass shooting tragedy. Even in such horrible scenes, there are moments of positivity and kindness, and this is one of them.

Meet Pfc. Glendon Oakley Jr., an off-duty soldier who was in the Walmart in El Paso where a gunman slaughtered 22 innocent people.

According to reports at the scene, Oakley scooped up children inside the store and carried them to safety.
Oakley sprang into action after a child ran up to him and said there was someone shooting at the Walmart next to the mall where he was shopping.

“I walked to Foot Locker and heard two gunshots and a whole bunch of people running around, screaming,” he said.

That’s when Oakley bolted outside to the parking lot.
“I see a whole bunch of kids … running around without their parents. The only thing I can think of is to pick up as many kids as I can,” he said. “I was just focused on the kids. I wasn’t worried about myself.”

The 22-year-old private first class had returned recently from a deployment in Kuwait,

“What I did was what I was supposed to do, and I understand it was heroic and I’m looked at as a hero for it, but that wasn’t the reason for me …” Oakley Jr. told reporters Sunday as he broke into tears. “I’m just focused on the kids that I could not get and the families that were lost.”

True courage, in the face of a gunman.

***Next up, this was such a fabulous, happy surprise for me on Thursday: As I’ve stated on this site many times, “Field of Dreams” is my all-time favorite film. And my pilgrimage, with my Dad, to Dyersville, Iowa to see the actual site on which the movie was filmed was one of the highlights of my life.

Thursday, Major League Baseball announced that next Aug. 13, the White Sox and Yankees will play an actual MLB game at the “Field of Dreams” field.

A temporary, 8,000-seat ballpark will be constructed, right next to the legendary field.

This is incredibly exciting and cool. Now having been there, I have many logistical questions, including, how in the world is that one tiny road that leads to the field going to handle the traffic?

But who cares, that’s a question for another day. Right now, the idea that a real, live MLB game will be played there? So, so cool.

And it gives me another excuse to run the James Earl Jones speech from the movie. Chills, every time…

**And finally today, tennis star Nick Kyrgios is the most polarizing player in the sport. Many fans hate him, because he tanks (loses on purpose) sets and often fails to even try, and because his on-court behavior is often atrocious and rude. Other fans love him, because he’s highly entertaining on and off the court, a breath of fresh air, and he attracts non-tennis fans to watch.

Me? I love him and hate him often at the same time. He’s very difficult to stay mad at when he does stuff like this, though: While in Washington D.C. last week for a tournament, he spent an hour playing ping-pong with local kids, having the time of his life.

He Tweeted it was “the best part about tournaments,” getting to interact with kids.
Well done, Nick. Oh, and the table tennis prep must’ve helped, Kyrgios went on to win the whole tennis tournament in D.C.

Thinking about fathers and sons and affection on Father’s Day. Lonzo Ball’s hilarious Foot Locker ad pokes fun at himself. And an awesome newspaper lede I wished I’d written

Sunday was Father’s Day here in America, and for the third year in a row I got to experience the wonderful feelings of love from my son, who while at 2 1/2 years old is still not old enough to buy me a present or write me out a card by himself, gives me so much joy every day.

(Sunday, while riding in the car to pick up a few things before going to my Dad and stepmom’s house for the day, we called my stepfather to wish him a Happy Father’s Day. Two or three minutes after I hung up, out of the blue, a little voice from the backseat said, “Daddy?”

“Yes, Nate?”

“Happy Father’s Day to you, too.”

I about melted.

I sometimes find myself thinking about fathers and sons, partially because I’m now both of those people, partially because “Field of Dreams” is my favorite all-time movie (and the movie contains the best father-son moment ever captured on film), and partially because it’s a fascinating topic. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have a wonderful, loving father who shows constant affection and has always been there for me, but I know millions of others never had that.

At the risk of sounding like a preachy right-wing Republican (I’m rarely in danger of sounding like that), every statistic and study shows that kids with good fathers who show them love and interest fare so much better, academically, socially and in any other way than those that don’t.

Of course there are exceptions, people like LeBron James who grew up without the presence of a biological dad yet still achieve incredible heights. But having a dad there seems to make all the difference in so many cases.

It’s funny, my father and I are always hugging and kissing and telling each other we love you, but I’ve met so many people over the years who barely speak to their parents, and haven’t said “I love you” to them in years.

I’m very lucky that hasn’t been the case for me. Read this great essay I saw Sunday by Andrew Potter, who unabashedly discusses showing huge amounts of affection for his little boy, and realize that all that talk about “macho guys don’t share feelings” is so much nonsense.

Hope you all had a wonderful Father’s Day. I got to spend it with my son and my father, and there’s nothing in the world better than that.

**So since we’re all about Father’s Day on today’s blog post, I thought it would be a good day to run this new Foot Locker commercial that cracked me up. If you’re a basketball or sports fan the last few months you’ve probably heard of LaVar Ball, maybe the loudest, most obnoxious, completely clueless sports parent of all time.
LaVar is pops to three budding basketball superstars, the oldest of whom, Lonzo, finished a fabulous freshman year at UCLA, promptly turned pro, and now will be one of the Top 5 picks of this week’s NBA Draft.

LaVar brings overbearing to a new level, has made so many outlandish statements about Lonzo’s ability that to reprint them here would take hours (a sample: “Lonzo is better than Steph Curry right now”).

But thankfully, it seems like Lonzo is a good kid, with a good sense of humor. So he was willing to spoof his Dad’s ways in this commercial. Very well-done.

**Finally today, as a writer you encounter so many stories with ledes you wish you’d written (yes, that’s how we journalism nerds spell “lead,” because that’s just how we spell it in journalism), and the other day I saw this beauty Tweeted out by Wall Street Journal writer Jason Gay. It’s from the Bangor (Me.) Daily News writer Alex Acquisto, and it’s glorious.

“HOPE, Maine — While jogging on a familiar, overgrown, wooded trail near her home on a recent warm afternoon, Rachel Borch thought to herself, “what a beautiful day.”

Little did she know she was about to be attacked by a rabid raccoon she would end up killing with her bare hands.”

I mean, come on, there’s no way you’re NOT reading the rest of that story, right?  There’s video, too (no, not of her killing the raccoon, though that’d be awesome.)

 

Washington Post editorial board makes history (in a bad way) on Snowden. Corey Feldman, pop star and train wreck! And Vin Scully +”Field of Dreams” = magic

snowdenpic

There has been a lot of important news in America lost amid all the nonsense that’s passing for Presidential election coverage. One small trend that has gone mostly unnoticed is that Edward Snowden, the man who leaked information about illegal U.S. government surveillance programs, is getting more and more support.

A man who was once vilified by so many is suddenly seriously being considered for a pardon by President Obama. According to this fascinating NYT Magazine article about Snowden and the new Oliver Stone movie about him, “former Attorney General Eric Holder, once a fierce critic, has acknowledged that Snowden performed “a public service.” President Obama has called for the reform of phone metadata collection, and last June, Congress passed the U.S.A. Freedom Act, a law that directly resulted from Snowden’s leaks. Snowden has come to be seen as a levelheaded activist.

All of this heartens me, as I am one of those who from the start saw Snowden’s actions, while illegal, as courageous, highly necessary, and important. Maybe calling Snowden a “hero” is going too far, but he certainly deserves major kudos for helping expose vast, vast overreaching by the U.S. government, and his disclosures have absolutely educated millions of us who had no idea how far the NSA had bulldozed our privacy.

So, you know, things have been looking up for Ed Snowden, generally. And then this unprecedented thing happens, and my mouth just about hit the floor. The Washington Post, the newspaper of Woodward and Bernstein for goodness sakes, has done something I’m not sure has ever been done in journalism history:  It happily used Snowden as a source for the NSA disclosures, won a Pulitzer Prize for them, and is now saying Snowden should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Specifically, the Washington Post editorial calls for Snowden to stand trial on espionage charges, or accept “a measure of criminal responsibility for his excesses and the U.S. government offers a measure of leniency.”

Rather hilariously, or frighteningly, as this Glenn Greenwald column points out, the Post excoriates Snowden for leaking a legal spying program called PRISM. But who was it that happily splashed the leak all across its front page? That’s right, the Washington Post!

This is pretty amazing, coming from a newspaper that lately, in its enabling of Donald Trump in some cases, used to be such a gold standard.  Now, a caveat that a lot of non-journalists don’t know: The editorial board of a newspaper is totally separate from the newsroom’s reporters and editors, so I’m certainly not claiming the whole Post staff is behind this editorial.

But it’s just … amazingly hypocritical of the Post, in my opinion. Edward Snowden should be allowed to come home, have a fair trial in his native country, and then the chips shall fall.

But espionage? Come on. But hey, don’t look at me: I’m still waiting when the hell the International War Crimes trials are starting for Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and George W. Bush.

**Next up today, a couple of videos that made me happy for completely different reasons. First, my fellow Gen X’ers certainly recall the acting “career” of Corey Feldman, aka one of the Two Coreys, aka Not the Blonde, Cute One. He has entertained us, amused us, and mostly made us feel sorry for him. He’s been a bad actor, a terrible reality TV star (although I did love him so in “The Surreal Life”), and generally a pretty strange dude.

But my friends, you haven’t seen Corey Feldman until you’ve seen him in a black hoodie, singing unintelligible lyrics, with women in angel costumes behind him.

I give you Corey Feldman, on the “Today” show, and you’re welcome. My God, what a glorious three-minute train wreck this is.

**And finally today, a nice palatte-cleanser: I’ve written a lot about legendary Dodgers announcer Vin Scully, because he’s retiring this year and deserves to be feted as much as possible.

I’ve also written a lot over the years about my all-time favorite movie, “Field of Dreams,” because it’s awesome.

So you show me a video of Vin Scully reciting the great James Earl Jones speech from “Field of Dreams,” set over great baseball highlights of the past? Yeah, I’m watching that. Lots of times.

Hope you enjoy.

My 10 favorite movies of all-time. And a way-cool helmet-cam look at hockey.

Field-of-Dreams-Terence-Terry-Mann-16

I’ve had two conversations with different people in the last week talking about our favorite movies of all time.

It’s a conversation I’ve had with a lot of people, actually, over the years, because just about everyone I’ve ever met can rattle off their top 3 or 4 movies off the top of their head (my wife is not one of those people; when we talked about movies in one of our first-ever conversations, she was pretty stumped when I asked her favorite. I only counted that against her a little bit).

So, because I’ve never done this before on the blog, and because I’m always looking to spark a little debate, here are my 10 favorite movies ever. Not saying these are the greatest ever, just the ones that mean the most to me.

Argue away…

1. Field of Dreams: It has occupied this list since the first time I saw it in about 1990 or so. Perfect combination of acting, writing, and a little bit of magic. I used to have the James Earl Jones speech at the end memorized and would recite it to my family on command. Seen this film probably 50 times, and love it each time even more.

2. The Princess Bride: To quote the great Joe Posnanski, “there are two kinds of people in the world: People who love this movie, and people who don’t have a heart.” Funniest movie I’ve ever seen, and eminently re-watchable.

3. Say Anything: The best of all the Cameron Crowe movies, which is saying something. Early John Cusack, a brilliant script, and it captures the late 1980s high school vibe better than anything else. Plus, the scene at the Gas ‘N’ Sip with Jeremy Piven (below) is classic.

4. Hoosiers: Best sports movie ever in my book. Love Gene Hackman in this, and the great visuals of Indiana basketball in the 1950s. I own a Jimmy Chitwood No. 15 jersey, that’s how much I love this movie.

5. Planes, Trains, and Automobiles: Wildly underrated flick; I’m amazed when I meet someone who hasn’t seen it. Steve Martin and John Candy, road-tripping from Chicago to New York. Too many funny scenes to recount, but “Those Aren’t Pillows?” is among the finest.


6. Goodfellas: I will, and have previously, argue with anyone who says “The Godfather” is better. The story of Henry Hill’s rise as a gangster is so damn good. De Niro and Pesci are great, the script is fantastic, and Marty Scorsese (especially in the famous kitchen of the Copa scene, above) directs beautifully.

7. When Harry Met Sally: Best romantic comedy ever; to call it a rom-com is almost an insult. Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan have perfect chemistry, Bruno Kirby and Carrie Fisher are great too (“you made a woman meow?”), and the late great Nora Ephron’s script is perfect.

8. Fargo: The Coen Brothers have made a lot of great films, but this is their masterpiece. William H. Macy, Steve Buscemi and the great Frances McDormand in a kidnapping tale gone way wrong. So dark, and so brilliant.

9. Almost Famous: Yes, I’ve got two Cameron Crowe movies in my Top 10. “Almost Famous” is just another perfect movie. Patrick Fugit in the role of his life, Kate Hudson never better, and Billy Crudup as the perfect “guitar player with mystique” in a 1970s rock band. So many amazing lines and scenes; my favorite is William dancing with Penny and saying “I’m about to boldly go where many men have gone before.”

Course, this scene’s not bad, either:

10. 12 Angry Men: Very close call here at No. 10; I easily could’ve gone with “Coming To America,” “Midnight Run,” or “American Beauty. ”

But the story of Juror No. 8 (Henry Fonda) convincing 11 other men of a young son’s innocence in the death of his father has stuck with me ever since I first saw it as a kid. Such spare, terrific acting, the whole movie takes place in one room, and it’s riveting as hell.

**Finally today, I always love videos that show us a different view of sports we’re all so familiar with.  So I thought this was really cool: A minor league hockey referee wore a GoPro helmet cam during a Dec. 20 game, along with his regular microphone, and the sights and sounds we get to hear are really great.

I especially love how harshly he talks to players who are trying to get an extra punch in after the whistle (around the 2:30 mark), and just how much stuff a ref has to deal with.

Really cool idea, and I hope it catches on in the NHL.

The Jets win a thriller in Hotlanta. An awesome MLB playoffs promo. And I check out the “Duck Dynasty” craze

Jets-Falcons

Wow! I sure as hell did not expect that.

The New York Jets, expected by me and everyone else in the world to stink this year (except by my friend Mark M., who had hope), continue to amaze.
Well, if not amaze, maybe surprise. Monday night against the allegedly-good Atlanta Falcons, the Jets built a huge 13-point lead, let it slip away, then came back on a game-winning drive by Geno Smith and won on a last-second field goal by Nick Folk.

Whew. I’m exhausted just typing all that. Too pumped up for sleep but I have to be up in five hours (hey, those sixth-graders won’t teach themselves, you know), so just a few quick thoughts on the game:

— For the Jets, Geno Smith looked fantastic: Poised, confident, and looking nothing like the guy who was totally lost last week at Tennessee. Played brilliantly, made no mistakes, didn’t make any dangerous throws, and was stellar with his accuracy. Too early to definitely say “we’ve got a franchise QB”, but this was his best game by far.
— The defense was fabulous for most of the game, and Mo Wilkerson is a beast.
— Mike Smith, I don’t know, I just don’t think he’s a good coach at all. The Falcons made plenty of mistakes, but not kicking a FG at the end of the first half, was a pretty big mistake.
— The Jets are 3-2. I thought their third win would come sometime after Halloween, maybe Thanksgiving. Crazy. I still don’t know if this team is any good, but they’re a hell of a lot more interesting to watch than I thought they’d be.

**As you know, I’m a huge fan of the best movie of all time “Field of Dreams.”
So when I first saw this MLB Network promo for the 2013 playoffs, I just about plotzed (It’s Yiddish, kids, look it up.)

How fantastic is this? It almost makes me love baseball like I used to.

Duck Dynasty stars 660 AP

**Finally today, I like to consider myself fairly up on all things pop culture, and I try to at least sample some of what most of the rest of the country seems to be big on, before I deride it or praise it to high heaven.

And so, even though I’m a New York City Jew who’s rarely ever been out in the wilderness and never been hunting, I decided to watch an episode of “Duck Dynasty” the other day.

Yes, “Duck Dynasty,” the tale of the Robertson family, wealthy Louisiana duck hunters/duck call makers who all have long beards and talk slow and just about embody all things redneck.

I mean, this show is huge. Twelve million people watch it every week,  three (3!) books written by or affiliated with the show are on the New York Times bestseller list, and they seem to be all over the cultural map.

So, you know, I figured what the hell, let’s check it out.
And it was as awful as I expected. Redneck humor, jokes about killing and skinning animals, slow-talking slobs making cracks about their wives, yep, it was right up the alley of red-state America.

Hey, more power to the Robertsons, that they’ve been able to make money by being themselves and convincing millions that they’re entertaining.

Me? I’ll stick with “Homeland” and “Big Bang Theory,” thanks.

Glenn Beck’s possible blindness, a trip to Wrigley, and drunk college girls who brought back memories

**OK, I promise, no more “Field of Dreams” posts for a while. But man, it was awesome.

I’ve always believed that karma pays you back not just in the afterlife, but in your time on Earth too.

Glenn Beck has been one of the most despicable human beings in media for the past, oh, seven years or so. First on CNN Headline News, now on Fox News, he has repeatedly made racist, sexist, anti-gay remarks on his television show and in interviews.

Now, while I try not to wish ill on people (except quarterbacks in the NFL when they’re playing the Jets), I wasn’t exactly crying when I heard this today, while web-surfing in my Iowa hotel room this morning.

Mr. Beck has been told by doctors that he has an eye disease called macular dystrophy, and that he may go blind in the next year.

Something tells me that even if he loses his vision, he’ll still see racism in Barack Obama, injustices against white Southerners, and absolutely no reason Sarah Palin shouldn’t be President.

What a schmuck he is.

**Had my second-ever Wrigley Field experience Tuesday night, and my first under the lights.

It was fabulous; Cubs were down 7-1 in the fourth, and rallied to score the next THIRTEEN runs, and won 14-7. If you’ve never been, and you’re any kind of a sports fan, I implore you to visit the ballpark before you die.

It really is a shrine, with so many wonderful elements (the ivy on the walls, the sellout crowds, the old-time feel of the place) that even if the game is terrible, you won’t be sorry you came. I mean, my Dad and I went to a Tuesday night game in late July between two really bad teams this year (Cubs and Astros), and there were still 36,401 people in attendance (I counted).

Best T-shirt I saw in Wrigleyville: “Jesus said to the Cubs: Don’t do anything until I get back.”

**The real fun at the game, though, came from the drunk college girls sitting in front of us. Quick summary: Brunette and blonde try to buy beer in about 2nd inning from beer vendor. He appears to turn down their attempt because their ID’s weren’t believable. Girls get pissed off, and then leave seats, disappearing for about 40 minutes.

When they come back, man are they in a better mood! Laughing, swearing, high-fiving everyone in sight as the Cubbies come back. I’m guessing they had at least 2-3 beers each while they were gone.
Then, when the blonde loses her cigarettes, she asks for help finding them. Instead, I find her wallet under the seat, which she thought she lost. Man were she and the brunette relieved and excited. The brunette spent the next 20 minutes thanking us profusely, clutching our hands, grabbing my face, and telling us she could get us a free round of golf in Chicago because she works at a country club near here.

“Just give me your cell phone and I’ll put my number in,” she declared joyfully. “Then you can call me and we can set it up!”

I passed. But watching someone get drunk that quick, and have their entire outlook and mood change, sure reminded me of 1994 and the Tau Kappa Epsilon house at Delaware, all over again.

Every bit as good as I thought it would be. And some ponderings from the road

DYERSVILLE, IOWA — When you build something up in your mind for 15 years, experiencing it is often a letdown.
How can reality ever compete with a dream?
But unless Kevin Costner and James Earl Jones personally escorted me around the premises, I could NOT have had a better time than I did at the original movie site of “Field of Dreams” here in a sleepy little Iowa town Monday.

After a 2 1/2 hour flight to Chicago from New York, followed by a 4-plus hour drive from Chicago to Dyersville (seriously, I think we drove through every two-stoplight town in the world along the way), followed by us getting lost on the way to the field (seriously, the signs for this shrine are really, really subtle; As my father observed, “When you only have one tourist attraction in your town, shouldn’t you make the signs really big so people don’t miss it?), we arrived at this holy place, a site I’ve dreamed about for years.

And, well … it was exactly as I hoped it would be. There were 6-8 people playing on the field when we arrived, and through our 2-hour stay there was a steady stream of newcomers, so we always had 10-12 folks hitting, fielding and pitching.

Me? I did everything I dreamed of doing there. I got to hit baseballs and run the bases. I pitched a little, to kids and to grownups. I made a few plays at third base, and even caught a few fly balls.

Of course, I walked into and out of the cornfields. Man, there is a TON of corn on this farm. I bought all kinds of stuff at the souvenir stand.

One highlight had to be the play where my father, playing first base in our little pickup game, tried to catch the throw from shortstop while simultaneously filming the play in his non-glove hand. Take a guess whether he caught it or not.

We also re-enacted a few of the famous scenes from the movie, which amused us greatly but drew some strange looks from a few kids nearby.

It was a magical day, one I’ll remember as long as I live. For everyone I met Monday, this was different than anywhere they’d been. If “Field of Dreams” touched your soul, coming to this place meant a lot.

Toward the end of our stay, I was playing catcher while a new visitor stepped up the plate. He was a 20ish guy, looked like an athlete, wearing a black T-shirt. He strode to the plate, looked around, and smiled widely.

“Finally, I’m actually here,” he muttered.
Exactly. What a fantastic, emotionally-fulfilling visit.

**Some other musings from a really long day, spent mostly in airplanes and cars:

— Do you have any idea how expensive the fines have gotten for tampering with airplane bathroom smoke detectors? I remember a few years ago it was like, 100 bucks, or maybe $250. Today when I went to the lavatory I saw the fine was $1,200! I mean, how bad do you really want to smoke, is what they’re basically asking you with that fine.

I really want to be on a flight where a guy writes a check for $1,200, then breaks out a pack of Marlboro Reds and says, “Here’s your damn money, I’m having a smoke.”

— Real subtle billboard I saw today while we drove through Illinois: “Abortion: You know in your heart it’s wrong.” Actually, I know that men making decisions on what women are allowed to do with their own body is wrong. But I guess that won’t fit on a billboard.

**Had a fantastic dinner tonight at the Country Junction in Dyersville. It’s one of those places where everything on the menu is fried, grilled and probably sopped in butter. Mmmmmm. Sure you can only eat there once a year and still live, but man was it good.

Another bucket list item about to be crossed off: A pilgrimage to a cornfield in Iowa

Going to Iowa today.
Couldn’t be more excited about it.
There are moments when you are absolutely, 100 percent sure that the man you’ve always believed to be your father is definitely your father.
When you both have the exact same vision, living hundreds of miles apart, of something that would be the ultimate dad-kid experience.
A few months ago, I heard that the cornfield in Dyersville, Iowa that was used for the movie “Field of Dreams”  was up for sale. Since the 1989 release of the movie, the field, owned by the Lansing family, has been kept just about exactly as it was in the movie, and turned into a tourist destination. People go there from all over the world, play a little baseball in the impromptu pick-up games that are always going on, walk in the cornfield, and re-capture the memories of how the film made them feel.

Since “Field of Dreams” is by far my favorite movie of all time, I thought news of the possible sale might spur me into taking action on fulfilling my two-decades old dream of visiting it one day. So I wrote this blog post about it, and then spent about an hour researching, theoretically, how much it would cost for my wife and I to fly to Iowa this summer, spend a day or two at the field, and come back.
“Wouldn’t you rather go with your Dad?” she asked at one point.
Of course that had occurred to me, but this is a man who lives on Long Island and thinks it’s too much of a schlep to drive into Queens. I figured there’s no way he’d want to go.
Anyway, I put the possible trip out of my head, dismissing it as not practical at this point in my life.
Literally the next day, my father emails Julie, before he’d read my blog post. He asks her to call him when I’m not around. So she does, later that day while I’m at work.
“Do you think Michael would want to go to Iowa this summer … ” he began. My wife, of course, began freaking out, screaming “Are you kidding me? We were JUST talking about this last night?”
And so, here I sit, a mere seven hours before my father and I begin our pilgrimage. We’re flying from New York to Chicago, then driving three hours to Dyersville. Going to play baseball on the “Field of Dreams” (I’m smiling just writing that!) Monday afternoon. Sleeping over there Monday night, going back to the field Tuesday for another look, then driving back to Chicago. Taking Pops to his first game at Wrigley Field that night (I’ve been once, it’s a shrine), then flying home to NY Wednesday morning.

It is the kind of trip you always read or hear about other people taking, and I’m exceedingly lucky and excited to be going. I love that my Dad wants to experience this with me, and that he’s up for adventure.

No, I don’t expect Ty Cobb or Mickey Mantle to walk out of the cornfield while I’m playing second base Monday. And I’m pretty sure James Earl Jones won’t be saying “Ray, people will come” when we drive up the road to the farm. Yeah, I know it’s a film set.

But the thrill of this movie, to me, has always been the idea of holding onto your dreams, and making them come true. And to me, getting to walk on the hallowed ground in Iowa is truly a dream come true.
I’ll let you know how it goes tomorrow, as well as what else I find in the tiny town of Dyersville.(Got to be a few cool things, right?)

A couple of Father’s Day stories to make you smile. And the dancing Brazilian baby!

Happy Father’s Day to all the daddies out there, especially mine, who did a pretty OK job, I’d say, raising me.

One story and two clips I wanted to share today. First, Esquire writer A.J. Jacobs always has some strange takes on things (he wrote a book once where he decided to live, literally, by the Bible for a year), but he wrote a wonderful article about raising his three sons in this month’s issue.

Check it out here.

**Then of course, since it’s Father’s Day, I must post the greatest father-son scene in the history of film:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

**And finally, because every father wishes he had a kid like this, the dancing baby that’s been taking the Internet by storm!

Seriously, this kid makes laugh and scares me at the same time.

“Field of Dreams” is up for sale; I am sad. And the most bizarre cover of Journey you’ll ever see

If you’re a good friend or a relative, you probably know that I’m a little obsessed with the movie “Field of Dreams.”

Not only is it my favorite movie ever, not only do I believe that there are two kinds of people in the world (those that love “Field of Dreams” and those that don’t have a heart), but as a teenager (I was 14 when it came out) I often delighted my father by simply blurting out parts of the movie, verbatim.

I could spend 3,000 words explaining why I love the movie, even after 100 viewings. I could tell you that visiting the actual movie site in Dyersville, Iowa is on my “Bucket List.”

But you don’t want to hear all that today. Instead, I’ll just tell you I was sad to hear that family who owns the farm the movie was filmed on has decided to sell.

Becky and Don Lansing, who actually only own 2/3 of the property the movie was made on (don’t ask me why I know that), have kept the field exactly as it was in the movie, and don’t charge admission at the field.

People of all ages come out there, April-November, and play baseball. With strangers. And they walk out of the corn field and wait for magic to happen.

Sure it’s just a movie site. But to those of us who worship the film, it’s a shrine. So I just hope that whoever buys Becky and Don’s property don’t turn the field into something tacky.

I hope they don’t overcommercialize it, and add on all kinds of crap.

Just leave it alone, I’d ask the new owners. It’s a sacred place.

**So at a benefit to save the rainforests the other night in New York City, there stood on stage one of the oddest collections of musical singing talent you’ll see.

Elton John, Lady Gaga, Sting, Bruce Springsteen, Debbie Harry, and Shirley Bassey all gathered round to sing “Don’t Stop Believin.” It was pretty awesome, especially when the mostly-naked men came on toward the end. Enjoy: