SI Vault
October 30, 1967
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October 30, 1967


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"Beat the Blackout with a Cowboy Antenna," read the advertisement in the Dallas Times Herald. "Watch the Cowboys' home games at home on your own TV." And that is what thousands of Cowboy fans are doing, thanks to an ingenious new pirate TV antenna that sells for only $4.95. The seven-foot antenna is designed so that it rejects telecasts from the Dallas-Fort Worth area and picks up broadcasts of Cowboy home games from stations at Waco and Sherman, Tex.

"There are two types of the antennas," Carl Gokie, a distributor, explains. "If you live in north Dallas, you buy the one that picks up games from Sherman, and if you live across town in Oak Cliff, Lakeview or Duncanville, you purchase a Waco antenna. Some people in poor reception areas have bought two." So far 21,000 have been sold to Cowboy supporters.

The manufacturer, a Burlington, Iowa man named Marvin Tate, believes he could build an antiblackout antenna for football and baseball fans in any city.


What with their 2-4 record and all, the rumor in Buffalo last week was that the Bills' coach, Joel Collier, was being replaced. It was reported that Norm Van Brocklin was to be his successor. People claimed to have seen Van Brocklin around town and on the sidelines at the game the Bills lost to Oakland two Sundays ago. Another rumor had it that Van Brocklin had bought a home in Hamburg, a Buffalo suburb.

Norm Van Brocklin was in Dallas two Sundays ago doing the telecast of the Saints-Cowboys game. He has only been in Buffalo once, in July 1965. And the owner of that house in Hamburg is Jim Van Brocklin, an electrical sales engineer, who says the closest he came to coaching a football team was as a scoutmaster. Jim is not related to Norm and has "never met him except to see him once on television." But, he adds, "My uncle was introduced to him once in California, if that helps."


With a name like his—Mason Dickson—the candidate, no doubt, thought that he would appeal to everyone. Instead, he appalled them when he announced his candidacy for homecoming queen at TCU. When challenged on his fitness (figuratively speaking) for the office, Dickson argued that nowhere in the election rules did it specify that a TCU homecoming-queen candidate had to be female. The only stipulations were that the student have a two-point or better grade average and have completed 73 hours. Dickson met these qualifications admirably.

"Some of the other beauty queens told me I really shouldn't enter the competition," Mason said. "I think they were afraid that I'd get more votes than they would." How popular Mason would have been with the Texas Christian student body will never be known. The election committee members crossed his name off the ballot, and, anticipating the worst, announced they would not even accept write-in votes.

During the World Series, Boston's Fenway Park was as oversubscribed as the Metropolitan Opera on opening night. Pitney-Bowes stamp machines, returning hundreds of unopened applications for Series tickets, had the gall to add this metered message: "Being there is twice the fun."

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