El Id

is a brat
OCTOBER 14, 2011 12:21PM

Funnyball (now with gif graphics!)

Rate: 57 Flag
With baseball's pennant race in full swing and the World Series just ahead, another season will soon be over, leaving baseball junkies with nothing to do but stare out the window and wait for spring, as Hall-of-Famer Rogers Hornsby suggested long ago.  Or, as I'm suggesting now, read Con Chapman's CannaCorn.  field of dreams

I'm not so much a baseball fan as a Con Chapman fan. I'm not even watching the pennant race despite my team, the Milwaukee Brewers, being in it.*  Chapman's team, Boston's Red Sox are out, which is one reason I'm reviewing Cannacorn now despite being only about a third into the book. Another reason is because Cranky Cuss reviewed Moneyball recently to correspond with the release of the movie by the same name in which Stephen Bishop, son of our own L in the Southeast, is starring with Brad Pitt among other Hollywood bigs. pitcher

Moneyball, in case you've just returned from a long nap in the Adirondacks, is also about baseball. Therefore, the last and least unimportant reason I'm reviewing CannaCorn now is because as we all know I'm in a death struggle with Cuss over who's the most popular blogger on OS so if he reviews a baseball book I had better hack one out myself pretty damned soon thereafter or die in obscurity. BTW, if you haven't rated this post yet do so now so's you won't forget and wait until after you post your comment when it won't stick. Don't worry, I'll wait...thanks. fielder

My only complaint thus far about CannaCorn is its title. Granted it's a verbalized version of the insider's metaphor for a softly hit ball that's easy to catch. “Can of corn,” as a sportswriter would write, using an expression derived from legend of the clerk in a general store who would have to climb a stool behind the cash register where the canned food was kept and then lob the can with an easy toss to the waiting customer. Corn? Well, legend continues, because the outfield was once called the cornfield.

There, that settled, I suggest this is a tad too “inside baseball” for the average reader of satire. Oh, I forgot to mention, CannaCorn is. Satire. Of the funniest kind. Thinking now only from a marketing vantage I suggest that especially with the incredibly loud buzz Moneyball the movie is getting – there's even a new edition of the book – that Con come out with a new edition of his book and call it Funnyball. basaballa

I do most of my recreational reading at night in bed, when I'm winding down and I read with the same measured savoring as one would sip a fine brandy. But brandy is rarely funny and CannaCorn is hilarious. I would choke to death on CannaCorn were it brandy. What my constant barking laughter does do, provoked at least once in every scene, is to make it more difficult for me to ease into slumber. My laughter often extends into the dark awhile after I've extinguished the lamp, as a dieseling engine continues to sputter without benefit of a live ignition.

I see I've used up considerable space here with preliminaries, leaving me no room for the usual compressed overview of what the book is about. Not a problem, as you can find several excellent plot summaries in the book's review section on Amazon.com. All are rave reviews, I might add, except for one crabby little piece by a man who calls Con a dunce, which prompts Con to suggest in a comment on the “review” for the man to see a nutritionist because he clearly has “an irony deficiency.”



I will try to make up for my synopsis deficiency by sharing a scene that made me laugh so hard in bed last night my wife considered calling 911. The scene starts out slowly, with several players expressing amazement that Carl Everett, a real baseball player, does not believe in dinosaurs or that astronauts walked on the moon. Delfayo Newbill, the team's ornery, argumentative star slugger, enters the discussion with this comment:

“Shit man, that ain't nothing...I don't believe in Europe.” With this, the game is afoot, the argument gaining in vehemence with “winning” points being scored and denied back and forth as one preposterous claim after another is lobbed over the net. Newbill wins, of course, but you'll have to read the book yourself to find out how. I will, however, give you the winner's closing line:

“Face it man. Just 'cause they's a Canada don't mean they's a Europe.” His lips formed a wry little smile and he shook his head. “Call me ignorant,” he said with a snort as he headed towards the field.

click cover for Amazon page

 Con has hit a triple bagger with this can of corn.


*Thanks to Desert Rat for correcting my major league error. 

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Excellent review, I have never read a baseball book, maybe this will be the first.
rated with love
??? Brewers are in and Boston is out . . .
I read this and passed it on to my son as it was dedicated to us both..
Excellent book.
Speaking of Con.. where is he these days???
He is on the missing list..
Desert Rat, oops. Little behind the loop, am I. Hafta hurry up and fix that before Cranky sees it. Thanks. Owe ya one...
Having downloaded three of Con's books as soon as I got my Kindle, I can attest to the barking laughter. There is a chapter in "Cats Say the Darnedest Things," in which the pet cats get their performance review, which makes me howl just thinking about it. I'll have to add this one.

BTW, Carl Everett used to play in NY with the Mets. Man, what a head case! He got in trouble one time - this is no joke - because he brought his kids to the ballpark and they appeared to have belt marks on them.

PS, I don't think either of us are contenders for most popular blogger (though our chances are better now that the Maestro is no longer here).
I knew it and I know it:
The Maestro iiiiiisssssssssss..................?????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
PSSSSSSSSSSSSSST...Don't tell!!!!!!!!!
You and Cuss need to get a room. I haven't read this, but if it is anything like his OS stuff, it's hilarious. I hear Moneyball the book is also funny~
I'm sold. Your review and the visual of you laughing is enough for me.
Thanks, Mary. I think you'd enjoy it. Con is a masterful storyteller.

desert_rat, I'm leaving your comment up as a reminder to me to not trust Google so much. As I mentioned in a PM to you I haven't watched a single major league game this season, altho I'll probly try to catch the Brew Crew at least once before the Series. If they make it, I'll watch the Series. I put the blame for my flagging interest in baseball squarely on OS's shoulders. I spend way too much time here, but, the funny thing is, I don't regret a bit of it.

Linda, you made me get up and go back to the bedroom to see if indeed Con had dedicated CannaCorn to you. That, I thought, could be a whole 'nother post were it so. What do you mean by that? Con's on a trip somewhere. He mentioned it in a comment, probly on his blog. Vacation, I believe.

Thanks, Jon, if only I'd Googled a tad more carefully. Fortunately in this place the moving finger may write wrong but, tears or no, it surely can erase not only a word of it but all the words if need be.

Cranky, I shall get Con's cat book for daughter Sarah for Christmas. Thanks for the recommendation. I wish you hadn't published the words The Maestro. I can hear him stirring in his crypt already.
Too late, Heidi. It was bad enuf Cranky had to go and put those words into his comment, and even worse that I had to go and do it, too. Whatever shall we do?

Scanman, you'll love it. Reading it I started to worry - and am still worrying - that some of us will end up being pilloried in one of Con's next books.

Fay, you might consider sleeping on a futon while reading CannaCorn, if you read it in bed. That's what the fictional manager made the starting pitcher do the night before each game, after one of them hurt his shoulder falling out of a conventional bed. The players' union had to get involved in this decision, of course. The manager, btw, is "Rusty" Rhodes. He'da been "Dusty," Con explains, except that nickname went to Rusty's older brother.
I meant the book not the post.. sorry Matt..
Con sent me the book.
Sorry for the mix up
Dammit, Linda, you just took another post away from me!! ;-|
sounds delightful...but what is even more delightful is the mental picture I get of you laughing so hard your wife considers calling 911. I will rate but confess I will also rate Cranky. Love you both. Call me ignorant.
Great review, Matt. I have zero interest in baseball, and it still sounds good. ~r
This sounds hilarious! I will have to check it out~Great review!
I saw it, and this is an excellent review. Great avatar, BTW. R
What's this about the rate button sticking? Cranky sent me, said it needed fixin'. Well, it works just fine. Do you know this guy?
great review! laughed quite a bit myself, especially loving this line "My laughter often extends into the dark awhile after I've extinguished the lamp, as a dieseling engine continues to sputter without benefit of a live ignition." i meet all criteria for having been asleep in the adirondecks - thanks for cluing me into con chapman's book - what a victory!
Bumping it thru once more to annoy the spambots and to promote the updated version WITH ANIMATED GIFs!
Funny book. I highly recommend it.
graphics enhance this very nicely, matt
Con who?
Moneyball? It's about baseball, is it?

I eschew baseball now that the world's most loyal Red Sox fan
is defunct, my

He died the year they finally won the Series.

"Dad! Can you believe it!!??" I shook his semicomatose body awake.
"Whuzza matter? yer mother ok?"
"Yeah, still dead, dad. It's been a year. No, Dad, THE RED SOX DID IT ! THEY WON THE SERIES!"
(this was the man who once roused the neighbors from summer slumber
with shrieks of joy whenever any of his boys
got so much as a base hit...)

"ah, uh huh. You sure yer mother is allright?"
"Yeah, she's asleep"
"Better quiet down, Jimbo. dont wanna wake her..."

fuck baseball anymore!!!
Jim, I think that's touching. It would seem his attitude was the same then as yours is now: fuck baseball, is your mother OK. I don't know what led up to that moment, but the moment makes a helluva love story. I understand completely that you wanted it to be your moment of sharing that joy with your dad. But evidently he loved your mom more, and that's really what it's all about.
Con is also one of my favorites. You reminded me that I need to buy this book as holiday presents for the four baseball fans in my family. (Their season is over. Reds fans. Cubs fans.)
As I am not a baseball fan, but have become a Matt Paust fan, I decided to check this piece out anyway, regardless of its batty leanings. Unfortunately, I quickly became like one of those fat American tourists, wearing Flintstone t-shirts, clogging up the streets of London, ooooing and aaaahing at the colorful visuals without soaking up the actual culture. But you don't need to know that.
GO TEAM GO! It's In The Hole! *forgive me*
I agree the title is odd, but if he were to rename the book "Funnyball", it would have looked like he was trying to ride off the coat tails of "Moneyball." Besides, "Funnyball" may be too presumptuous. Comedy is subjective.
Amy, CannaCorn would make a perfect gift for any baseball fan. Actually, you don't need to know anything about baseball to appreciate the book. In fact, if you find baseball boring as hell, the book will be even funnier.

A little something for everybody, Charlie, but so far as I know there are no holes in baseball. There's no crying in baseball, either.

Trudge, I disagree with you, vehemently! I kick dust on you! I take my cap off and hurl it, toward the cameras. You're right, of course, but I'm in too deep to back down now. But...wait! So what if people think Con is trying to cash in on the Moneyball phenomenon? Why shouldn't he? Trying to cash in on stuff is as American as apple pie...as American as...baseball!!
Stephen and I thank you for the shoutout, Matt and for giving me an idea for on of his Christmas gifts!

My pleasure, Lady L. I'll bet Con would love to sign it for Stephen. I think he's on vacation in England or some such exotic locale at the moment, but should be back soon.
retry: It's In The Paint! Touchdown! The Swimmers are perfectly synchronized!
That's a hat trick if I ever saw one. Brava!
yeah , matt.
the boys of summer are one thing,
but a gal you've known for 60 years is another.
Oh, so this is what you do, Paust. You make everybody read your post, then you add graphics so everyone has to come over again and you can get back to the top of the feed. Sneaky bastard.
Cuss, you prolly should bookmark this. I plan to put a video up next, then, after everybody's been by again, I'll put up some music. With your help I should be able to keep this in the feed until after the Series. Hey, it's better than spam.
Why do I keep having to RE-add you as a favorite? Why does it disappear?
Is it because of your changing avatars? -nah, that would be nuts.

I was even trying to add you to an email and send you the funny "Occupy Sesame Street" pictorial with cookie monster and big bird, Link, but your name didn't come up in my list...
This is an outrage.

Must be the baseball thing? ;) She Shoots! She doesn't Score!
Charlie, we've got to stop meeting like this. The favorites thing is fickle. Names disappear all the time. OS must have a mind of its own. Oh, forget what I said in the first sentence. You're welcome here any old time. ;-|
I think I'll squat your post. I put up a tent, got a Bunsen burner, hot dogs and beans roasting. I have a junkyard dog keeping watch for me... It can get dangerous hanging around here. Let me apologize in advance if my doggy craps... I don't have a plastic bag for clean up.
The wifi keeps cutting out too. That's okay, I plan to go off the grid soon anyway. I'd rather live off the land of your post, disconnect from Uncle Sam and all the other Funny Uncles asking me to pull their finger then slapping me with taxes while I choke on the fumes.

Time to plant some beefsteak tomatoes. Is the soil here good? I bet James will also pitch a tent here. Not "pitch a tent" in a naughty way... Then again, who knows. He writes p*rn-math stuff.

Gotta go, my dog is doing his business to close to the tent. I'll walk him over to another post for a second....
Walk him over to Cranky's place. He could use a little fertilizer for his crabapple tree.
I don't know much about baseball, except that it resembles the ancient game of cricket played here in the West Indies, but the book sounds hilarious.
Whoever heard of a limp baseball? I thought that was the most handy weapon to ward of intruders in the USA??? very funny.

I just want you to know, personally, I don't even believe in Canada.

Thanks for the review!

Like Hilary Clinton, I have both an NL and an AL team, and the Cardinals are my NL team so I still have a dog in the hunt.
Judy told me I needed to read this.
And she was right!