By West Coast Craig

WHITE HOUSE BOWLING LANES – Funny thing about writing a Monday post, I get a lot of these holiday specials, so most of you reading this aren’t stealing moments from work, you’re doing this on your own time. So, thanks for tuning in! There were at least a few things going on in the world of Sports this weekend that could bear comment, from Daytona to NBA All Stars to Westminster Dogs…but it’s Presidents Day so I figured I’d try to be at least on theme here with some little known trivia.

Our current man in office is easily the best basketball player to ever grace the White House court, though Abe Lincoln, our tallest president, had over a two-inch height advantage and despite his lanky frame could probably post up pretty good… had basketball been invented in his lifetime. No, Honest Abe had to settle for the sports of the era, like wrestling bears and other men, which was a pretty good way to meet other men probably. Howard Taft is credited with being the first president to throw out a first pitch but did you know that at the time he was the also the reigning Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Champ? Teddy Roosevelt, perhaps the greatest sportsman president of all time, was an avid big game hunter, tennis player, fisherman and, later on, gave a strong showing against Man O’ War in a match race. William Henry Harrison was an avid power walker. Everyone knows Richard Nixon loved to bowl, but when he was Vice President under Ike, he once donned a mask and wrestled the Fabulous Moolah for an inter-gender belt under the pseudonym The Persian Pansy. He was the heel. Before the stock market crash in 1929, Herbert Hoover’s claim to fame was that he once did a marathon jitterbug contest for six straight days. Millard Fillmore was a big fan of the English game rounders, and during his presidency actively tried to promote it over the burgeoning sport of base ball… which is why he was the last Whig president. George Washington tried to invent a game called Throw The Silver Dollar Across The Potomac, but even though he got one across, he and his friends lost hundreds more and vowed never to play again. Woodrow Wilson rode in the 1916 Tour De France, to secretly to get the lay of the land for the first World War. Jimmy Carter, being from the south where it was simply a part of the culture, was a heralded knobfighter as a young man. No, that wasn’t the MTM filter, it’s a very rural localized sport where a group of kids would be blind folded, put in a ring with a sack full of doorknobs and then fight until only one was left standing. Warren G. Harding loved playing dodgeball but he was terrible at it. FDR played right field for the St. Louis Browns during WWII. Amazingly, he was out there with his leg braces and everything but since nobody watched St. Louis Browns games, he was able to keep his polio a secret. John Quincy Adams earned his way through college by entering bar bouncer contests, and could toss a midget a good nine feet. George W. Bush was a cheerleader.

So there you have it, a rich history of our nation’s highest office and sports of the times. Hope everyone enjoys the day off today, those who do have it. And hey, props to The Matts for the new videos galavanting around Florida with the Super Bowl Winners.

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About West Coast Craig 226 Articles
West Coast Craig reports from Hollywood with an endearingly laid back style. A happily married father of two little boys, WCC has an avocado tree in his yard, plays the hot corner in a "Valley" hardball league and always manages to take cool sports-related mini road-trips, often with his immediate clan. He hails from Oneonta, NY but has been "So very L.A." for twenty years, so his sports teams are the Yankees AND the Dodgers, the Pittsburgh Steelers, the L.A. Lakers and the Colorado Avalanche/Quebec Nordiques. WCC loves bacon-wrapped hotdogs and can touch his heel and his ear... with his hand.