SI Vault
Edited by Robert W. Creamer
December 06, 1976
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December 06, 1976


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With all the talk about so many animals being placed on the endangered species list because of the depredations of man, it is probably only fair to report that there is another list, although a much smaller one, of wild animals that are distinctly not endangered by man but seem to flourish in close proximity to him.

Prominent on this roster are the armadillo, the coyote and the raccoon. These three not only have learned to live comfortably in man's environment, they show signs of preferring built-up areas to wild ones. Armadillos are found in relative abundance on the outskirts of towns and cities in many parts of the Sunbelt, and there are, supposedly, more coyotes running loose in the streets of Los Angeles than there are dogs.

As for raccoons, they're everyplace. In Memphis, for example, there are more raccoons per acre than there are in any forestland in the South. In one three-day period, in a small area around the Memphis zoo, 100 raccoons, including three albinos, were trapped and shipped off to the wild areas of the Great Smoky Mountains, where there is a shortage.


Bill Veeck is often described as the best promotion man baseball has known, the man who comes up with the lots-of-fun gimmicks that bring people to the ball park and keep them coming back for more. Now Paul Richards, the venerable manager who came out of retirement at Veeck's request to run the White Sox last season and who has stepped aside to let Bob Lemon take over, has expressed a heretical opinion of Veeck's promotional bent. You understand that Richards and Veeck comprise a two-man mutual admiration society, and that Richards' remarks are those of a friend who is not afraid to say what he thinks about his good buddy.

In talking about Veeck's recent back operation, Richards said, "We were all worried, and so were the doctors. I'll tell you this: Bill's got to let up. He can't be making three speeches in the morning, flying to Peoria for lunch, driving up to Rockford for a dinner and then staying up half the night on the telephone. How many tickets does that sell, really? I've always felt Bill overemphasizes promotions and giveaways. When he had all those promotions in Cleveland and Chicago years ago, he had good teams, too, and a good team is what really brings people into the ball park. If the White Sox win, people will come to the park."


When New Jersey voters legalized casino gambling in Atlantic City last month there was speculation that casino operators in Las Vegas and Reno would be upset by this encroachment on what had been a virtual monopoly for Nevada. Gambling in the Western state generated about $1.7 billion last year, and it provided the state treasury with $91.2 million in taxes. Yet Nevadans have shown little worry over possible competition from Atlantic City.

"It's going to take a long time for anyone to compete with the Nevada style of gambling, plush as it is," says Jeffrey Silver, a member of the Nevada Gaming Control Board. "They're going to need a lot of urban renewal before they get started."

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