Rooney chortled at the thought.
"Did Jack Slee show up on the bench for the Giants' game?" asked the man in the lobby.
"Did he show up!" cried Rooney, "He not only showed up, but he brought us the biggest bundle of luck we ever had. We played in the snow at Forbes Field and we beat the Giants 63-7, the worst licking in their history. I thought I was dreaming."
Rooney took a deep breath. "Afterward Steve Owen, the Giants' coach, growled at me, 'What got into your guys today?' 'Why,' I said, 'we got a chaplain. You didn't have a chance.' "
"Holy mackerel!" cried the other man, "How come you didn't win the championship that year?"
Rooney put on a long face. "We lost Jack Slee," he said soberly. "He was transferred to Los Angeles. Showed up on the bench as chaplain of the Rams. Jack Slee and the Rams beat us 28-14." He started away. "Good seeing you," he called back, and he walked into the office of Ed Kiely, the Steelers' publicity director.
Kiely looked up from his typewriter as Rooney entered.
"Say, Ed," said Rooney, "there's a fellow I've got to see in Cincinnati and I ought to go down to the farm. Tom Barry has a matter to discuss at Monmouth, and then I thought I'd drive over to Aqueduct and see Bob Duncan." ( Barry and Duncan train Rooney horses.)
Kiely shook his head. "No, Art," he said, "you can't duck this dinner tonight. CBS has the television sponsors and the agency men coming, and they're counting on you."
"Will I have to make a speech?"