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[Tidbits] Emerald Ball


We’re not talking about a gala party here. We’re talking about a
spherical or semi-spherical object one tosses or kicks about in an
aimless effort to get the object beyond an opponent’s imaginary
boundaries before opponent gets the object into your imaginary
boundaries in order to score arbitrary points and give the viewing
audience vicarious pleasures. These points as well as the boundaries
are called goals. Not the kind of goal that would describe the aims
of a career-minded individual but… Ach. Never mind. You get the

Which brings us to August 14, 1959. The American Football League’s
first organizational meeting is held in Chicago. A charter franchise
is granted to Harry Wismer. A divisional setup is created. Its
grouping is called The Titans in New York.

I digress for a mere instant. I was not raised as a child in this
country. I know nothing of American sports except for their names
and a few details such as: In baseball you swing a stick at a ball
and try to bash the pitcher’s skull off his neck. If you don’t
succeed you run around like all getout in order to save your skin. In
football a band of players pounce upon an member of the opposing
team and try to pound him deep into the earth till only his nose and
ears appear above ground. Breaking a few bones during this process
seems to enhance viewer pleasure. And in basketball… you try
aimlessly to defy gravity with the aid of an air filled ball which
will hopefully give you more buoyancy allowing you to soar–if not
high above the clouds-- then at least high enough to drop the ball
into a stringed container with no bottom while you land back on the
ground and try to grab the ball again to see if you can soar even
higher next time. This is as far as my knowledge goes… for the rest
I’ll be winging it.

Harry Wismer was the wiz of his time. In the late 1940s he was the
voice talent to many college football films. His was the sound
commentary added long after the games were over. He had style. His
sound effects included referee whistles and such. He achieved
ultimate fame as the voice of the Washington Redskins.

Most of the rest of this is rather dry blather… except perhaps for
those aficionados amongst you who would rather stay unwashed for
three years than miss one iota of as it regards football.
For those I add a few extra bits. On December 18, 1959 Wismer hired
Hall of Famer-to-be Sammy Baugh as the first coach of the New York
Titans. Salary: 28 grand a year. Dreams of fame drew many who wanted
to play for the Titans. Who would be the next Johnny Unitas? Then…
on November 24th, 1960… The New York Titans became the New York

And then… one day before 1995… a jeweler came along (I know not
his name) and worked with a setter (I also know not his name) and
they created a football set with calibre emeralds and diamond
baguettes with gold stitching. It’s an absolute must see…
especially for those who never knew how to play this game and who
have gleaned great insight from my descriptions. Of course I give my
knowledge freely and wish you all great pleasure in your new found

That said… Go. Go look. It was worth about $12,000 in 1995.

For those of you who are new to this thing called Tidbits…may I
direct you to my home page at where you
will scroll down the left side menu till you get to the area that
says Current Tidbits… click it… and you will see represented on
our pages an emerald and diamond football.

And there ya have it.
That’s it for this week folks.
Catch you all next week.
Benjamin Mark



Wonderful writing! Wonderful emeralds in delightfully tacky

Looking forward to your next piece. MA