- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
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- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
If the 62-million acres comprising Oregon were evenly parceled out to all the men, women and children in the state, everybody would wind up with 35 to himself. In a similar way, if the 30,000 seats comprising Portland's Multnomah Stadium were evenly divided among an average baseball crowd, every patron would have 10 to himself. The story of Portland's minor league troubles is not much different from those of minor league cities everywhere. What the management is doing about it is this: Last week the Portland Beavers announced that the stadium has been cut down to size. Five-foot fences now enclose the seats between first and third, creating a compact, 6,000-seat stadium-within-a-stadium. Two more fences in the left-field bleachers enclose a 1,300-seat layout. The effect, says Billy Sayles, Beaver assistant general manager, will not only generate more fun and fellowship among the Beaver faithful, but will moreover (and happily) cut cleaning-up and ticket-printing costs by a third. On such auspicious occasions as opening day (a social summit affair in Portland), the fences will come down for a day.
Rewrite by John Thomas
William Saroyan is in England writing a play called Sam, the Highest Jumper of Them All—or, The London Comedy. What is it about? Well, in Saroyan's first version a character explains: "The play is about two hours and 40 minutes, but we're a little over and we hope to cut it down."
Sam, etc., which is only slightly more Method than madness, is also about Sam Hark-Harkalark who lives on East Best-Two-out-of-Three St. Sam develops "delusions of grandeur, paranoia and schizophrenia" and decides he is the world's highest jumper-.-Throughout the second act a makeshift high-jump bar in Sam's house rises higher and higher until it finally reaches the ceiling. But Sam is convinced he has cleared it and broken all records in the process. It is, perhaps, Saroyan's old allegory about the little man who vaults heroically over disaster.
In Saroyan's latest draft Sam's sanity is restored and he goes back to work as a bank clerk. But Saroyan is still rewriting, taking advantage of history even though the play opens this week. Just the other day he interrupted a rehearsal after an actor recited his line saying that the world high-jump record is seven feet. Whipping out a Paris edition of the New York Herald Tribune, Saroyan triumphantly dictated his new line: "Change it to: 'It's seven feet two-and-a-half inches. Chap named John Thomas just did it.' "
Listen to This
The locker room's one