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  • Bill Chastain

Woodstock Prices, PTI, and Rory Flinging It

Woodstock took place on August 15-18, 1969, serving as a defining moment for a generation while giving us one of the most amazing events in the history of music.

How in the heck did they manage to bring in so many classic artists to one venue? Some of my favorites included Richie Havens; Arlo Guthrie; Joan Baez; Canned Heat; the Grateful Dead; Janis Joplin; Sly & The Family Stone; The Who; Jefferson Airplane; Joe Cocker; Ten Years After; Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young; and Jimi Hendrix.

What’s even more amazing is what they were paid to perform. According to several different reports, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young were paid $5,000 as was Arlo Guthrie. Joe Cocker received $1,375 and the Grateful Dead, $2,250. The Who worked for$6,250 and Jimi Hendrix — a headliner — earned $18,000.

Now, here’s a segue.

Slightly more than a year earlier than Woodstock, the Word Champion St. Louis Cardinals were featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Photographed in street clothes and sitting in front of their lockers were players Roger Maris, Tim McCarver, Bob Gibson, Mike Shannon, Lou Brock, Orlando Cepeda, Curt Flood, Julian Javier, and Dal Maxville. The Cardinals were identified as having “Baseball’s First Million Dollar Payroll.”

Consider the kind of summer you might have at the ballpark these days if your home team had players like those on the ’68 Cardinals — for a million dollars. Couple that with the bands they could book after the games if Woodstock prices were in effect.

Talk about record-setting attendance. And all for the cost of a journeyman infielder.

Pardon the Interruption In my opinion, Pardon the Interruption has always ranked among the top sports talk shows. Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon host the show that takes place in Washington D.C. (where both once worked for the Washington Post) and they discuss mostly sports, but also other stories in the news. Each is well informed and best of all, they might disagree from time to time, but they don’t get in the dramatic shouting matches normally associated with such shows. And the show is clever. Recently I cracked up when they talked about medical marijuana becoming legal in Washington D.C., at which point the camera shifted to Kornheiser, who dug in on a bag of chips. Rory Flinging It Over the weekend, Rory McIlroy chucked his 3-iron in the water after a bad shot. Later, in comments carried by the PGA Tour website, he noted: “[It] felt good at the time.” He added: “I just let frustration get the better of me. It was heat of the moment, and I mean, if it had of been any other club I probably wouldn’t have but I didn’t need a 3‑iron for the rest of the round so I thought, why not.” That occurred in the second round of the Cadillac Championship held at Trump National Doral in Doral, Florida. He then played the third round with just 13 clubs in his bag before Donald Trump reunited him with his 3-iron prior to the fourth round. Seems Trump paid a diver to retrieve the club for McIlroy, who selected the club to use for his third shot on No. 18 on Sunday. Once again, the 3-iron bit him as he hit the ball into the water. This time he feigned throwing his 3-iron into the drink. He followed with a smile. Other athletes that show their tempers on occasion might take note. A smile can take one a long way with critics. bchastain19@gmail.org

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©2020 by Bill Chastain. Photo credits: Jill Doty Photography