BRONX, NY – Today is the day before Thanksgiving and I have to be frank with you; I have precious little time to bang out a column. The best way to describe my life these days is, “utter chaos.” I was going to try to tap out a simple seasonal column of things to be thankful for, or not to be thankful for, but I don’t think that’s fair to whoever is posting tomorrow. So instead, and if I may be frank again, today I am going to list some of those things we can all be Frankful for. Lets get to it!
Frank Cashen. Thanks to Frank for showing us how not to lead our lives, and sports franchises. Thanks also to Frank for giving us his dimwit son Jeff so we can all feel even better about how our own kids turned out. Franks for keeping it real, Frank. Real stupid.
Frank Stallone. How can we not give franks to Sylvester Stallone’s kid brother Frank. Sure, Sly gave us Rocky, but Frank Stallone gave us every bit as entertaining a pugilist. He played Eddie, the hapless punching bag bartender to Mickey Rourke’s Charles Bukowski in Barfly. Please tell me you all saw this movie. It’s still a must. Frank also hit the Billboard Top 10 in 1983 with his Staying Alive song, “Far from Over.” Take that, Rocko.
Nathan’s Franks. Now and forever the hot dog gold standard. Having a Nathan’s Frank and a beer at Coney Island should even be on vegetarians’ bucket lists. There are other good hot dogs around (I would highly recommend Crif Dogs in NYCs East Village) but no one will ever top Nathan’s.
Frank Taveras. He didn’t have the same impressive afro when he played for the Mets as he did when he was on the Pirates, but he’s well deserving of a mention. Take a bow, Frank.
Frank Messer. This former Yankees announcer stands out in my memory for two reasons. The first was a game at Comiskey Park where a Channel 11 cameraman zoomed in on a busty Southside gal in the stands and a flustered Messer could only say, “Oh, my.” The second thing was his ability to turn the monosyllabic word “safe” into the dual-syllabled “SAY-AFE.” Way to go, Frank.
Frank Burns. Without Frank Burns there was no M*A*S*H. It was bad enough when McLean Stevenson and Wayne Rogers left the show, but without Burns it was over. To this day I use the Burns line, “It’s nice to be nice… to the nice.”
Frank Sinatra. All of the musical accomplishments aside, the guy was married to Ava Gardner and Mia Farrow. I mean, talk about playing the field. Ol’ Blue Eyes also enjoyed his bourbon, and I can never get mad at that.
Franco Harris. He get’s a mention only because he played football and looked a little like Gabe Kaplan. I never cared for how he ran out of bounds all the time. What can I say, I’m a tough grader.
Frankie Valli. I had to throw in a Jersey Boy for Short Matt who, until he got engaged, used to drift off to the sounds of “Who’s gonna love you, love you? who’s gonna love you?”
Frank “The Animal” Fletcher. He was a staple on ABC boxing back in the day, facing off against such luminaries as Wilbert “Vampire” Johnson and John “The Beast” Mugabi.
Frankie Goes to Hollywood. Thanks to this Frank for reminding us to always “relax” when you want to come. Um… ok… but I’m kinda feeling pretty relaxed as is.
Frank Howard. Last but not least, a Happy Franksgiving to former New York Mets gargantuan first base coach, Frank Howard. The man looked like a lighthouse standing in the first base coach’s box. He literally had to bend completely over to tell Mookie Wilson that it was okay to take a bigger lead or advise Sid Fernandez to take no lead whatsoever.