Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Curt Flood

February 2017

Curt Flood played 15 years for the St Louis Cardinals.  He batted .293 lifetime and   was a 3 time all star. He won seven gold gloves, three pennants and two World Series.

In 1969 bound by the reserve clause Anheuser Busch traded him to the Philadelphia Phillies where the “N” word was as common as hello.  Curt Flood refused to be traded and stood his ground.  He along with Marvin Miller sued Major League Baseball.  After a lengthy court battle, the reserve clause disappeared and the age of free agency was born.

Flood never played again.  He drank hard, smoked hard and received several death threats daily.  He was broke and broken.  He died at the young age of 59 of throat cancer.  At his funeral the Rev. Jesse Jackson said it best, “ Baseball didn’t change Curt Flood.  Curt Flood changed baseball.”

More than 100 years after Lincoln, Curt Flood broke another barrier to a form of slavery; it was called the reserve clause.  So when your favourite team signs a popular free agent, remember the name Curt Flood and make him a part of your black history month.

-- christopher lee grant

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Cold Dark Mirror

Original Sine Productions in association  with Moonlight Road Entertainment presents a David T. Krupicz film Cold Dark Mirror.
This animated feature film includes the voice talents of Christopher Lee Grant,
Sandra DaCosta, Ry Barrett, Paul Nicholls and Astrida Auza.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Mario Cuomo 1932 - 2015

Sadly we lay to rest former New York Governor Mario Cuomo today. Being a baseball person myself, I had knowledge that he and I shared the same passion.  He was signed in 1952 by the Pittsburgh Pirates and although he never played a major league game, he took the money and put it on the finger of young Matilda.  They built a family and served the community for the goodness of the whole.
This is a quote from Ken Burns “Baseball”,  by Mario Cuomo that I identified with  20 years ago and hold close to me to this day.  It helped me take a look at life and spirituality with a perspective of simplicity via the game I love so much.  -Christopher

"Baseball is a community activity. You need all nine people helping one another. I love bunt plays. I love the idea of the bunt. I love the idea of the sacrifice. Even the word is good. Giving yourself up for the good of the whole. That's Jeremiah. That's thousands of years of wisdom. You find your own good in the good of the whole. You find your own individual fulfillment in the success of the community — the Bible tried to do that and didn't teach you. Baseball did." -- Mario Cuomo

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Jean Beliveau was my very first sports hero as a boy.  In my home we had an antenna on top of the house to bring in the analog signal to watch TV.  Reception wasn’t always great.  On Saturday nights we had better reception from CHEX Peterborough than CBLT Toronto so I grew up with Danny Gallivan and Dick Irvin and life at the Forum. 

  In 1971 I knew who Jean Beliveau was, the captain of the Canadiens !  It was the year I clued in to being a fan. That was the year that rookie Ken Dryden stood on his head night after night till Jean Beliveau hoisted the cup at the end of the season.  That image remained in my young mind.

The next year I went to a ScotiaBank hockey school and the spokesmen for the program was Jean Beliveau and Gordie Howe.  The influence of Jean Beliveau was again instilled in my mind as I watched an interview after he was retired. I remember him saying “Watch out for numero dix, number 10.”  He was soooo right ! 

Later that year I was in a tournament in Hawkesbury, Ontario.  The family I was billeted with had tickets to the Saturday night game at the forum.  We couldn’t believe our eyes when we got to ride the escalator down at the forum with Pete Mahovlich, he was out with a broken hand at the time.  As we reached the bottom of the escalator  Pete walked over to where Dick Irvin and Red Fisher were standing talking to Jean Beliveau in the lobby.  The variance in height between the men was a shock because they all look the same height on TV.  M. Beliveau looked so distinguished out of uniform in a long black coat with furry collar, white shirt, neck tie and leather gloves.  It was quite a moment to be only steps from him.

I got to see Jean Beliveau again at a book signing at the Ottawa Citizen in 1994.  His presence you could feel right through your skin.  Didn’t get to shake his hand but still have the autographed copy of the book that I will treasure along with his memory.

 I have always striven in my life to conduct myself professionally with respect and humility.  I pride myself on being polite and a gentleman. Part of that is because I had a role model sports hero in Jean Beliveau. 

Christopher Lee Grant

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Fans of 'Hatchet Jim'

I was thrilled to receive this artwork from a young Kawartha Lakes student.  The likeness of Cheetos 'Hatchet Jim' and his famous tagline "anybody wanna see a skull ?"  Holding a skull shape from new Cheetos 'Bag of Bones'. White cheddar flavor in fun shapes of bones was a real hit this Hallowe'en !

Thank you to 
age 9