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Equipment Leasing Marketing Specialist,
Walnut Creek, CA. College Degree plus
equipment leasing experience required.
For a full job description: click here.

Email resume to sgreen@bankofthewest.com

At Bank of the West, we take pride in what we do. From contributing to nonprofits and volunteering in our communities to making a point to get to know our customers by name, we aim to stand apart. While many things have changed over our bank's long history, one thing has remained the same: commitment to our customers and our community.


Wednesday, May 11, 2005


Classified Ads---Sales Managers
    CyberNet Claims total $114 million
        The Fall of NorVergence, Insider's Viewpoint
Leasing News Advisors:
    Are you still having fun in the leasing business?
        Classified Ads---Help Wanted
            New Feature---Top History Event Today
News Briefs---
    "Gimme that Wine"
        Top History Event Today
            This Day in American History
                Baseball Poem—Gene Carney

Next Edition : Dan Baldwin of Telecom Agent Association ePlog
(radio) interview: Kit Menkin on Preferred Capital, Huntington Bank, Lessees making lease payments on NorVergence Leasing, the status of defaults, and more...

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”

Your One stop solution for training and reference material for the Leasing Professional

Visit our website by clickng on the logo above

122-A Foothill Blvd., Arcadia, CA. 91006
Voice 626-305-1053 . Fax 626-305-0019 .


Classified Ads----Sales Manager

Atlanta, GA
30 years in transportation Finance with strong management/ sales background. Represented company on national & region markets. Started two successful operations- produce profits and growth.
Email: pml@mindspring.com

Chicago, IL.
Successful sales manager has 15 years experience with captives and independents. Expertise in re-energizing existing sales teams and territories, also building teams from scratch. True Team Leader looking for new challenge. email: Murph5553@aol.com

Chicago, IL
Senior sales manager seeks Chicago based sales management role with growing, creative, customer focused lessor. Extensive experience/documented results in all aspects of information technology leasing.
Email: belanger@dataflo.net

Dallas/Fort Worth, TX.
Domestic-int'l exp. Small to middle ticket. 24 yrs with Fortune 500 firms(2). Consistently achieves margin/ volume goals.
Email: dptr7300@sbcglobal.net

New York, NY
I have over 25 years owning an independent leasing company that specialized in truck leasing. Tow trucks, Limos, ambulances, tractors, etc..
Email: rfleisher@rsrcapital.com

Pennsauken, NJ.
17 Years Leasing in all capacities from CSR and Collections to National Sales Management and Vice President Vendor Development. Exceptional People Skills. Many industry references.
email: cherfurth1@aol.com

Portland, OR.
18+ yrs w/bank leasing company. Supervised 14- 20 sales people. Willing to relocate for the proper position.
Email: pthygeson@netscape.net

All job wanted ads are available at:



CyberNet Claims total $114 million


CyberNET once claimed $300 million in revenue. Now, however, claims against CyberNET and its numerous entities, with names such as Ultinex, CyberNET BVI, Guangdong Computer Corporation, CyberCo, Teleservices Group Inc. and so on, total nearly $114 million.

Steve Rayman, as attorney for the federal trustee, is the man appointed by the court to collect what very little is left of CyberNET and divvy it up to creditors. "When you get into the numbers we're talking about, it's absolutely staggering," he says.

Authorities say the scam at CyberNET may have very well started when the company itself did in the early 90s, just after Barton was released from jail, where he had been imprisoned on a fraud conviction.

An FBI affidavit explains how investigators say the scam worked. CyberNET would approach a bank saying that it wanted a loan for computers from, for example, Teleservices, a company that was actually part of the CyberNET Group. The bank would call Teleservices, and that company would, in turn, vouch for CyberNET. As a result, the loan would be secured. The cash from the loan would then be pocketed.

There were red flags all over. In 2002, accountant Guy Hiestand found highly inflated earnings. CyberNET claimed a check written to the company by Tokyo Electron was for $282,948.97. Tokyo Electron says there was a check, but that its amount was actually for $6.18. Ethical standards required Hiestand to tell a higher up. He emailed Barton Watson and quit.

Another example of inflated numbers is found in a CyberNET brochure. In a draft version of the brochure, revenue is estimated at $300 million. In the final version of the brochure, revenue is stated at $200 million. From the draft to the final version, the company was playing around with a $100 million.

Barton's childhood friend Jim Cameron says the lies are no surprise. Cameron is now writing a book on the big lie. "I think he was able to suspend disbelief as to what he was telling you. So when he told it to you, he believed it," Cameron says.

The big question asks who, in the end, pays for the missing money. If you are currently paying on a loan, the answer is that you'll be paying for it. "That's one reason you pay eight percent on your mortgage versus seven or six percent, because the bank has taken losses and, in this case, from CyberCo. So we all pay more for everything we buy because of losses like this," says Rayman.

The bankruptcy, looking for money for creditors, is one investigation. There's also the criminal investigation. Sources will say their main focus was Barton Watson. Now he's dead, but there are other players left. There's Paul Wright, Barton's butler, and Geraldine, Barton's mother. There are also key players like CyberNET President Jim Horton and Barton's widow Krista Watson. Now, CFO David Roepke can be added to the list. Trustees would like to know why the accounting was so far off.

(for previous news stories, please go here:



The Fall of NorVergence, Insider's Viewpoint

(This “inside” account of the demise of NorVergence, lack of cash to pay health benefits, meet payroll, and continue to operate was told to me by engineers, former sales personnel, friends of Robert J. Fine (may have been actually he under another name),including the involvement of Alex Wolf action as COO, appears fairly accurate. I am sure there are more "side stories," and "games" going on, and this is obviously not from “upper management,” which also had controls and obviously from the very beginning was not telling leasing companies “the whole truth, “making this disclaimer should not detract from what is related here.

It is a very good summation of an “middle management insider's viewpoint” about the fall of NorVergence. Editor)

From inside the company, my point of view is we probably caused our own fall.

We did owe Qwest a ton of money and had paid them for months....It takes a long time to get shutoff when you are a reseller. Qwest however did take an active interest in getting their money back and laid out what needed to be done and payments that needed to be made. As I heard it told, Qwest demanded we call them on a certain day and Alex Wolf (COO, the man who came up with the “seed” money to start NorVergence, and actually ran the day-to-day operation) convinced Peter Salzano (president, who recently filed personal bankruptcy) that we didn't have to jump when they said to because we were such big clients and they needed us like we did them. Well, Pete waited a day to call and oooops that's when they pulled the plug on all the customers. Not flipped a switch but yanked the wires which is why it took days to get everyone back on.

When the leasing companies saw that we could be shut off like that they about s**t themselves and (again as I heard it told) they had already switched their payments stream from paying us when the Matrix was mounted to when customers actually got service. A several month gap where there was be no real income because of the giant backlog of customers waiting for connection. This was supposedly cause by our S.E.V.P. of Business Operations who (I heard this from someone who spoke with a programmer) faked reports to Tom (so he wouldn't get ripped a new one for allowing installs to fall behind.)

(Tom Salzano, the brother of Peter, the real “president,” who due to his background could not be listed as president, but according to all reports, the buck stopped at his desk: he was the boss.)

At that point the leasing companies forced us to hire auditors to see if the company was viable. Again I heard (I wasn't privy to what the "important" people knew) the auditor said the company could be viable but the main leasing companies didn't care and forced us into the bankruptcy. Many of the smaller leasing companies argued to keep things going because we were a huge percentage of their portfolio but we owed so much to the larger ones they didn't care. We owed them money because we had to pay back any money they gave us if we didn't have a customer connected 60 days after we were paid, typically matrix mounting date when the D&A was signed.

In conclusion, we had a jackass faking reports and causing a backlog. (Thus confusing the Salzano's, if you can believe it, actually affecting what has been referred to as their “Ponizi type operation .) The backlog caused the leasing companies to change the way they paid us. We had no real income for several months because we had to use the money we did get for connecting customers to pay back the leasing companies for those that were not connected after 60 days based on the old payment method. Thus we didn't pay Qwest who we then p****d off and then shut us off. This freaked some of the larger leasing companies who decided to cut their loses.





Leasing News Advisors-- Are you still having fun
in the leasing business?

“Kit, you asked “are you still having fun in the industry and why?” My short answer is yes! I have been with the same group since the late 80's. My boss, and credit manager are the same individuals and we have a number of long time employees. We started out as a funding source that did financial statement deals only. Many of those deals were structured and dependent upon the collateral. Over the course of time we started doing some application only business, and now have come the full cycle where today, we are an “app only” funding source.

Over that period of time we have seen the economy go up and down, rates have dramatically changed and the competition has come and gone. We have always done our due diligence and have tried to error on the side of conservatism, which can be frustrating at times, but has proven to be a key for longevity.

“Every industry and every company faces challenges, both external and internal. One cannot control the external environment but has to adjust to it accordingly. Internally, as companies grow and develop they face new challenges along with related issues. That is just part of business.

If one enjoys fellow employees, believe they offer a viable product or solution and looks forward to interacting with their customers, and then this business is fun. Besides after twenty plus years of leasing, what else am I qualified to do, be a greeter at Wal Mart? And I am sure they have their issues also.”

Steve Reid, CLP
VP Marketing, Leasing Division
Pacific Capital Bank
2230 W. Chapman Ave #200
Orange, Ca 92868
714-938-0288 (fax)
email: steve.reid@pcbancorp.com


“I am having more fun than ever. I have been in the finance and leasing industry for 35 years. Maybe I enjoy it more today because I am a little wiser. There is no question that we went through some lean times in recent years but business has rebounded since last summer and is continuing to grow.

“Those that worked smart survived. The positive is the dead weight of weak unsophisticated brokers and lessors have left in their wake a group of leasing professionals. The same scenario took place in the funding community as well. Over the last few years we have had a reduction in funders due to mergers and exits. This left a stronger base of lenders. I feel it's like 1991 again. Let's hope for another decade of prosperity.”

Regards, Bob
Robert D Baker CLP
Wildwood Financial Group, Ltd
2646 Highway 109 Suite 101
Wildwood, Mo 63040
800 373 3581
877 235 0808 Fax


“(Written from a business trip to Puerto Vallarta, that part is fun too)

“In 1989 I was lucky enough to score a guided tour of the UAL Maintenance Facility at SFO, a place not otherwise open to the public. My host asked: had I ever witnessed a new aircraft delivery? No I hadn't, so we went over to a hangar where a new 737 was on display. It was an awesome sight from the ground, and it sparkled much like a new car on the showroom floor. Approaching the front tires I noticed that it was likely someone had wiped them with ArmorAll or some such. There were perhaps 100 people there watching, some execs but mostly workmen in coveralls.

“I was lucky to be there on such an unusual day. I asked: How often do you take deliveries here? Answer: pretty much every week. Why the big crowd then? Well, my host said, they love this. It's addictive and never gets routine. That visual had a big impression on me.

“Airplanes are among the sexiest examples of this equipment fetish that some of us have. The sense of unlimited opportunity in the skies left us a bit on September 11, and in most segments yields are down and deals are fewer than before. In those respects it's less easy and fun than previously.

“Still, the concept of deploying capital and getting equipment placed to do a job for years or decades is fun for those of us who do it. Just when it seems routine I get a chance to explain it to a stranger in the next seat on an airplane or at a party, and they usually say this: wow. And forward we go, still fun.”

Paul Weiss, President
Icon Capital
San Francisco, New York
(Written from a business trip to Puerto Vallarta, that part is fun too.)


“One of the things I enjoy most about the equipment financing business is getting to know different industries, and understanding the how and why of the way they do business. There is always something new to learn. Still having fun, always the one.”

Theresa M. Kabot, CLP
Kabot Commercial Leasing
Seattle, Washington


“I had this conversation last night with a finance major student intern who has been working here at Nassau for one year now. She chose the Nassau internship over two internships in bank branches. One year later she's happy with her decision to work here and looks forward to each day because our business exposes her to so many different industries.

“I happen to feel the same way and it's refreshing when I see a young person starting out in the business enjoying it the same way I have for 21 years. Every day is different. Some good some bad but overall in my opinion it's still fun. “

Ed Castagna
senior vice-president
Nassau Asset Management



Classified Ads---Help Wanted

Asset Management

Asset Management:
Long Island City, NY
seeking an experienced off lease and repossession manager. Successful candidates should have prior experience. Email resume to ekaye@advantagefunding.us or fax to 718 392 5427.

About the Company: Advantage Funding is a leading commercial and consumer vehicle and equipment financing and leasing company, Long Island City, NY.


Equipment Leasing Marketing Specialist

Equipment Leasing Marketing Specialist,
Walnut Creek, CA. College Degree plus
equipment leasing experience required.
For a full job description: click here.

Email resume to sgreen@bankofthewest.com

At Bank of the West, we take pride in what we do. From contributing to nonprofits and volunteering in our communities to making a point to get to know our customers by name, we aim to stand apart. While many things have changed over our bank's long history, one thing has remained the same: commitment to our customers and our community.


Sales / Sales Representative

Motivated sales pro for expanding healthcare marketplace. Prior healthcare exper. a plus. Competitive comp plan & benefits.
Contact: jverbeerst@variantleasing.com

Variant Leasing is a rapidly growing nationwide independent lessor located in south Orange County, CA, specializing in the healthcare & commercial marketplace.



seeking energetic, exper; sales prof/ work Newport Beach CA & Deerfield IL Vendor Services Division offices/middle to large ticket resellers/orig. equip. mfg. Requirement/Apply click here

About the Company : CG Commercial Funding is a rapidly growing industry leader in middle/large ticket lease finance.




New Feature---Top History Event Today

This Day in American History actually started about 15 years ago as part of my e-mail signature. I had a web intern, a senior from Stanford University, who posted a new poem often as her e-mail signature. I started with the birthdays of jazz musicians, then expanded it to others in American History, and each year I kept expanding it to other categories. It grew so large, I stopped using it.

Recently Leasing News Advisor Steve Gabriel asked me if people read it. I said it has a following. “Too long for most people to read, “ he observed. “ It often is seven to nine pages, do you realize that, Kit?” I told him each year I add an new “category” in history, and that is why it is so large. I also enjoy doing it. “So then why don't you just put down the one historic event of the day for those who don't have the time to read the full day?”

Thus, the new feature, started yesterday: Top History Event Today.

Kit Menkin



News Briefs----

GE's Accounting Flub


National Australia Bank (NAB) is to cut 2,500 jobs at home and close 100 branches in the UK as it tries to recover from a trading scandal.


Bubble or not, high home prices can hurt





“Gimme that Wine”

When Velvety Red Is Only Skin Deep

Oregon's King Estate Winery Exploding With Activity

CULPEPER LIFE How well do you know wine?

Some California wines cost less back East Pennsylvania official uses buying power for discounts



Top History Event Today

1864- Attempting to head off Union General Phil Sheridan's cavalry advance on Richmond, one of the South's greatest military strategists, Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart's cavalry encountered the Federals at Yellow Tavern, Virginia. It was a surprise encounter, not only changing the direction of the war, but Stuart was mortally wounded in the battle and died the following day. The loss of one of its most colorful and effective cavalry leaders was a great loss to the South. It also marked the first time that Sheridan, with Gen. Grant's approval, was making his first independent cavalry action, surprising Stuart considerably. The battle did accomplish the delay of the Federal advance, delaying it long enough for the Confederates to strengthen the defense at Richmond, and Sheridan was forced to change his plans.



This Day in American History

    1792-The first exploration by ship of the mouth of the Columbia River in Oregon took place when Robert Gray, a fur trader on his second commercial voyage to the north west coast of America, rounded Cape Disappointment and sailed the Columbia Rediviva 22 miles up the river. Earlier explorers had passed the Columbia's mouth but had not recognized it as such.
    1858- Minnesota became the 32 nd state. Although its state bird is the common loon, there's nothing common about Minnesota, whose Dakota-Sioux Indian name means sky-tinted water. The North Star State's capital is St. Paul, which has a twin city, Minneapolis. The state flower is the lovely lady's slipper.
    1862- After a standoff with the Union ironclad Monitor on Mar 9, the Confederate ironclad Merrimac was destroyed by the Confederate navy on May 11. In the wake of advancing Union troops in the Peninsular Campaign. the South was forced to destroy the valuable vessel and its manufacturing facility to prevent its capture by Union forces. The “History Channel” has an excellent series about these two warships
    1864- Attempting to head off Union General Phil Sheridan's cavalry advance on Richmond, one of the South's greatest military strategist, Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart's cavalry encountered the Federals at Yellow Tavern, Virginia. It was a surprise encounter, not only changing the direction of the war, but Stuart was mortally wounded in the battle and died the following day. The loss of one of its most colorful and effective cavalry leaders was a great loss to the South. It also marked the first time that Sheridan, with Gen. Grant's approval, was making his first independent cavalry action, surprising Stuart considerably. The battle did accomplish the delay of the Federal advance, delaying it long enough for the Confederates to strengthen the defense at Richmond, and Sheridan was forced to change his plans.
    1885—Birthday of trumpet player/band leader, the famous Joe “King” Oliver.
    1888-Irving Berlin's birthday. Songwriter born Israel Isidore Baline at Tyumen, Russia. Irving Berlin moved to New York, NY, with his family when he was four years old. After the death of his father, he began singing in saloons and on street corners in order to help his family and worked as a singing waiter as a teenager. Berlin became one of America's most prolific songwriters, authoring such songs as "Alexander's Ragtime Band," "White Christmas," "God Bless America," "There's No Business Like Show Business," "Doin' What Comes Naturally," "Puttin' On the Ritz," "Blue Skies" and "Oh! How I Hate to Get Up in the Morning" among others. He could neither read nor write musical notation. On this date in 1988, celebrities from Frank Sinatra to Isaac Stern, Ray Charles to Leonard Bernstein paid musical tribute to Irving Berlin on his 100th birthday. The Carnegie Hall concert ended with all the performers singing "There's No Business like Show Business." Berlin himself did not attend but members of his family were there. Berlin died on September 22nd, 1989, age 101
    1894-Dancer/chorographer Martha Graham birthday. Martha Graham was born at Allegheny, PA, and became one of the giants of the modern dance movement in the US. She began her dance career at the comparatively late age of 22 and joined the Greenwich Village Follies in 1923. Her new ideas began to surface in the late '20s and '30s, and by the mid-1930s she was incorporating the rituals of the southwestern American Indians in her work. She is credited with bringing a new psychological depth to modern dance by exploring primal emotions and ancient rituals in her work. She performed until the age of 75, and premiered in her 180th ballet, The Maple Leaf Rag, in the fall of 1990. Died Apr 1, 1991, at New York, NY.
    1895- Birthday of African-American Composer William Grant Still
    1898-Ensing Worth Bagley, executive officer of the torpedo boat U.S.S. Winslow was the first Navy officer killed in action in the Spanish-American War. The Winslow had been sent to the wharves at Cardenas, Cuba, for a closer inspection of the docks, and was fired upon simultaneously by a shore battery and a Spanish gunboat. Also killed was a sailor, George Burton Meek, to whose memory a monument was erected in the McPherson Cemetery, Clyde, OH.
    1900 - In an effort to regain the heavyweight boxing title, James J. Corbett, known as Gentleman Jim, was knocked out cold by James J. Jeffries -- in the 23rd round.
    1906-Birthday of trombonist J.C. Higginbotham, Social Circle, GA.
    1910-Glacier National Park established. Located in northwest Montana on the Canadian border. In 1932, Glacier and Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta were joined together by the governments of the US and Canada as Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park.
    1913-Birthday of pianist Olive Cook, known as “Lady Charlotte, “ born New Orleans, LA.
    1927-Comic/actor Mort Sahl birthday, born Montreal, QC, Canada. He gained fame in the early 1950s with his monologues, which commented on everything from politics to women. He was one of the funniest stand-up comics, often reading directly from the newspaper and commenting on events.

    1927 - The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was founded. The first Oscars were for films produced in the first year of the Academy: 1927-28. (For the first 6 years, the awards were for films produced during the fiscal year, not the calendar year.) Among the first winners were Emil Jannings and Janet Gaynor for acting, and Wings for best picture.
    1930-Novelist and teacher Stanley Elkin birthday. Born at Brooklyn, NY, Stanley Elkin became a professor at Washington University at St. Louis, MO, where he lectured on fiction writing for more than 30 years. In addition to his teaching, Elkin was a novelist of particular acclaim. Author of 17 books, he was awarded the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1983 for his novel, George Mills. Elkin died of a heart attack at St. Louis, MO, May 31, 1995.
    1937-The predominately white bank of Benny Goodman “battled” the predominately black Chick Webb band at the famous Savoy ( Drummer Gene Krupa said drummer Chick Webb won.)
    1938-Birthday of jazz pianist Carla Bley, Oakland, Ca.
    1942-Seattle Blackout. Seattle, WA, became the first US city to institute outside blackout control during WWII. All outdoor lighting became subject to permit.
    1946 - Jack Barry, a familiar face on TV game shows, hosted "Juvenile Jury" on WOR Radio in New York City. The show was such a hit after five weeks on the air that it debuted on the Mutual Broadcasting System coast to coast. Maybe Barry became a bit too familiar in 1959. It was "Twenty One", the enormously popular show that Barry hosted, that led to the Quiz Show Scandal that rocked television and the U.S. Congress.
    1947-F.F. Goodrich, Akron, OH, announced the manufacture of the first tubeless car tires, ready for the marketplace. The tires automatically sealed themselves when punctured. They were marketed in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia before being offered for national distribution.
    1953 -A devastating tornado, rated f5 on the Fujita Scale, tore through downtown Waco, Texas. 114 people were killed and 597 were injured. Total damage was $41 million. Another tornado (f4) virtually leveled 15 square blocks of San Angelo, Texas with 13 people killed and 159 injured.
    1955----Top Hits
Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White - Perez Prado
Unchained Melody - Les Baxter
Honey-Babe - Art Mooney
In the Jailhouse Now - Webb Pierce
    1959 - Twenty-three-year-old Carol Burnett made her musical comedy debut in Once Upon a Mattress at the Phoenix Theatre in New York City. Only eight years later, the talented comedienne would star in her own Emmy-winning TV musical variety program.
    1959--- "Kookie, Kookie Lend Me Your Comb" by Byrnes and Connie Stevens hits #4 on the charts.
    1963--- Sandy Koufax no-hits the Giants, 8-0. It will the Dodgers' southpaw second of four career no-hitters.
    1963---Top Hits
I Will Follow Him - Little Peggy March
Puff the Magic Dragon - Peter, Paul & Mary
If You Wanna Be Happy - Jimmy Soul
Lonesome 7-7203 - Hawkshaw Hawkins
    1968-The Montreal Canadiens completed a four-game sweep of the St. Louis Blues in the Stanley Cub finals, winning the fourth game, 3-2, in St. Louis. The 1967-68 season marked the debut of six expansion teams, the Los Angeles Kings, the Minnesota North Starts, the Oakland Seals, the Philadelphia Flyers, the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Blues. They were all grouped into the western Conference, and one of them was guaranteed a spot in the finals.
    1969-One of the most infamous battles began that signified the growing frustration with America's involvement in the Vietnam War. Attempting to seize Dong Ap Bia mountain, American troops repeatedly scaled the hill over a 10-day period, often engaging in bloody hand-to-hand combat with the North Vietnamese. After finally securing the objective, American military decision makers chose to abandon it and the North Vietnamese retook it shortly thereafter. The heavy casualties in the struggle to take the hill inspired the name “Hamburger Hill.”
    1970 - Lubbock, Texas was struck by a tornado rated f5 on the Fujita Scale. 26 people were killed and 500 were injured. The total damage was estimated at $135 million which was considered conservative. 600 apartment units were destroyed along with 430 houses. 250 businesses were damaged or destroyed. 80 percent of the windows in the downtown area were broken.
    1971-steve Dunning of the Cleveland Indians became the last pitcher in the American League to hit a grand slam prior to the inauguration of the designated-hitter rule in 1973. His home coming in a game against the Oakland as pitcher Diego Segui, gave the Indians a 5-0 lead. They won the game 7-5, but relief pitcher Phil Hennigan got the win.
    1971---Top Hits
Joy to the World - Three Dog Night
Never Can Say Goodbye - The Jackson 5
I Am...I Said - Neil Diamond
How Much More Can She Stand - Conway Twitty
    1972 - The San Francisco Giants announced that they were trading Willie Mays to the New York Mets.
    1974--- "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown" by Frank Sinatra hits #83
    1979---Top Hits
Reunited - Peaches & Herb
Music Box Dancer - Frank Mills
Stumblin' In - Suzi Quatro & Chris Norman
Backside of Thirty - John Conlee
    1981- The Andrew Lloyd Webber musical "Cats" opened in London. The composer had to mortgage his house to help finance the $1.1 million production. Since then, "Cats" has grossed more than one billion dollars in more than a dozen countries, including Canada. On May 11th, 1989, "Cats" became London's longest- running musical, playing its 3,358th performance. And on January 29th, 1996, it set the world record for longevity with its 6,138th performance.
    1985 - Scott Brayton turned in the fastest lap ever at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Brayton was traveling at 214.199 MPH in the third lap of qualifying. Duane ‘Pancho' Carter grabbed the pole position for that years Indianapolis 500. Carter entered the history books with a speed of 212.583 MPH for four qualifying laps around the 2.5 mile track at Indy.
    1985--- Madonna's "Crazy For You" single goes #1
    1987---Top Hits
(I Just) Died in Your Arms - Cutting Crew
Looking for a New Love - Jody Watley
With or Without You - U2
The Moon is Still Over Her Shoulder - Michael Johnson
    1988---Celebrities from Frank Sinatra to Isaac Stern, Ray Charles to Leonard Bernstein paid musical tribute to Irving Berlin on his 100th birthday. The Carnegie Hall concert ended with all the performers singing "There's No Business Like Show Business." Berlin himself did not attend but members of his family were there. Berlin died on September 22nd, 1989, age 101.
    1990-Top Hits
Do Not Want What I Haven't Got ---Sinead O Connor
Please Hammer Don't Hurt ‘Em---MC Hammer
Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation—Janet Jackson
    1997 - U.S. office receipts to date for the film Jerry McGuire, starring Tom Cruise and Cuba Gooding, Jr., had climbed to $150,850,000; The English Patient had brought in $76,259,531. Top box office producer on this date, however, was George Lucas's re-released science fiction classic, Return of the Jedi, which had a reported accumulated U.S. box office gross of $308,453,687; trailing behind it was the re- released The Empire Strikes Back, with an accumulated gross of $290,158,751.
    1997 - IBM's supercomputer Deep Blue made chess history by defeating Gary Kasparov, the first time a reigning world champion had been bested in a match by a machine.
    1998---Top Hits
My All---Mariah Carey
You're Still the One---Shania Twain
Everybody---Backstreet Boys
    1998 Striking out 13 Diamondbacks, Cubs' Kerry Wood sets a major league record for strikeouts in consecutive games with 33 in two games. The previous record for strikeouts (32) in two starts was held by Luis Tiant (1968 - Indians), Nolan Ryan (1974 - Angels), Dwight Gooden (1984 - Mets) and Randy Johnson (1997- Mariners).
    1999 - After two years of work, Columbia Records released Latin heartthrob Ricky Martin's fifth album, a self-titled cross-over to English. This album was a calculated decision, and the album's first hit, "Livin' La Vida Loca" shot to the top of the charts. Martin's third and fourth solo efforts went gold. His fourth album "Vuelve" had sold more than 6 million copies worldwide.
    2004-- Pittsfield city officials and historians release 1791 bylaw which they believe is the earliest written reference to baseball. The 213-year-old document, used protect the windows in town's new meeting house by prohibiting anyone from playing baseball within 80 yards of the building, was uncovered by baseball historian John Thorn while doing research on the origins of baseball.
    2004--- After missing yesterday's game to become to become an American citizen, Red Sox left fielder Manny Ramirez, much to the delight of the Fenway faithful, leads his teammates out of the dugout waving an American flag to celebrate his first day as a citizen of the United States. As the 31-year native Dominican Republic comes to bat America by Neil Diamond is played over the PA system.

Stanley Cup Champions This Date

    1968 Montreal Canadiens
    1972 Boston Bruins



Field of Dreams

Yeah, guess I'm a member of AA:
Alienated by Astroturf
Hey, most of us never played on plastic
Grass is the missing link
Between all the games of our lives —
Sandlot, Little League, school
And theirs
But why stop at replanting the real green?
Why not make the playing fields
Even more connecting?

Let's plant trees around the outfield
Let the warning track burst into colors
For the Series

Let the outfielders fish around in thorny bramble
For lost balls in the gaps

(Both sides hunt till it's found)

Let the thieves slide into flat rocks
That don't give anything but bruises

Let glass windows be
Strategically placed
Near the bullpens, maybe
Batters breaking them get the bases
But it costs them ten thou each

(The fines go to charity)

Let the field of our dreams
Have its cornfield in right center
Ground rule double in the stalks
Let vendors sell the cobs: "Souven-ears, here!"

Let the infield undulate some
With a sprinkling of pebbles
To keep those wizards on their toes

Let all fielders wear gloves
Without all that trapping and padding
So their hands sting some —
The price of earned POs and A's

Let them keep the ball in play
As in the days before the Babe
Til they knock the covers off
Keep tape handy for extra innings
Now there's a game worth the price of admission.

Written by Gene Carney, published in
“Romancing the Horsehide,” Baseball Poems
on Players and the Game
Published by McFarland & Company


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