On more than a few occasions, I have quoted items from Dwight Perry’s column, Sideline Chatter, which appears just about every weekday in the Seattle Times. That column is described on the paper’s website in the following way:
“Times night-desk editor Dwight Perry uses Sideline Chatter as a not-so-safe haven for the humorous, offbeat and bizarre events and characters that color the sports landscape.”
That is a very accurate description – - although it does omit the fact that the column also contains lots of plays on words and puns that will make you groan aloud. Why mention this today?
I had the opportunity to meet Dwight Perry and chat with him for about an hour last summer on a visit to Seattle. He told me then that December 14 would be the 2000th installment of Sideline Chatter since he took over the column on December 9, 1999. Do the math folks; that comes out to 250 columns a year; that amounts to five columns a week for fifty weeks of the year.
Anyone can do regluar “cut and paste” items with only a bit of diligence and a whole lot of patience. However, it is anything but easy to turn out original stuff with that frequency and with any degree of quality.
I want to suggest to everyone to put a bookmark in your browser so that you can read Sideline Chatter regularly. You can go to the Seattle Times sports page and find the link to that day’s version of the column along with other columnists.
If you prefer just to get to the “Sideline Chatter archives”, you can find the last week or so of them listed here.
As I said above, doing “cut and paste” is not particularly difficult; and so, allow me to pad this offering by providing a few samples from previous Sideline Chatter columns to demonstrate what I mean about interesting and original work…
“Actor Sean Connery, who sued Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, Calif., over endorsement proceeds, has settled for an undisclosed sum, E! News reported.
“Or to put it in golf terms, he hit the green with a 007-iron.”
“Good news for you Big East also-rans: Conference presidents have voted to include all 16 conference members, instead of the usual 12, in their postseason basketball tournament, starting in 2009.
“The change, they said, is in keeping with their No Manchild Left Behind policy.”
“Chiefs Hall of Fame linebacker Bobby Bell, 67, won Kansas City’s version of “Dancing with the Stars,” the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.
“Thus inventing artificial-hip hop.”
“The legend that Notre Dame football star George Gipp’s girlfriend bore his child just after his death in 1920 has been debunked by DNA tests that ruled him out as the father, a family member told an Alabama author.
“Or as one giddy abstinence proponent put it: ‘Win One For The Zipper!’ “
“Thirty years ago — Nov. 13, 1977 — marked the final appearance of the comic strip ‘Li’l Abner.’
“On the bright side, though, we still have Terry Bradshaw.”
“The Dallas Stars boast the NHL’s best record in overtime shootouts – 22-6 – since the league implemented the post-OT tiebreaker during the 2005-06 season.
“In fact, historians say, they haven’t seen such a spiffy showing in shootouts since Bonnie and Clyde went 28-1.”
“In auto-racing news, Playboy magazine will be the title sponsor for the Sports Car Club of America’s 2008 Pro Racing Mazda MX-5 Cup.
“And no, the roadsters won’t be required to race with their tops down.”
In order to prove that some of the puns are outrageous enough that you might want to threaten Messr. Perry with revocation of his freedom of expression, here is a real groaner:
“Veteran coach Billy Joe, with more victories than any other football coach at a historically black college other than Eddie Robinson, will be named coach at Miles College, the Birmingham (Ala.) News reported.
“No word on salary terms — or as he prefers to call it, owed to Billy Joe.”
Here’s looking forward to December 2011 and the 3000th version of Sideline Chatter…