â€œIn every job that must be done there is an element of fun…â€ -Mary Poppins
What ole Mary fails to mention is that for every job to be done thereâ€™s usually a boss.Â What happens when that boss doesnâ€™t want you to have any fun?Â Now, Iâ€™m not saying that was necessarily the case during my tenure working at â€œAmericaâ€™s Pastimeâ€, we certainly did have a lot of fun.Â But as the years went on (and the budget tightened) the leash around our necks started to feel more and more like a noose.
*I fondly (not fondly) recall one occasion (many occasions) where I was escorted into the clubhouse in Surprise and asked (not asked… told) to formally apologize to Jimmy Gobble for…
Wait for it…
making a gobbling sound when introducing him FOUR MONTHS earlier at the last game of the season.Â
I really did enjoy going out to Spring Training for a week to 10 days those years. That is when and where 90% of what you see on the big board is actually filmed. Those head shots you see and ask yourself, â€œDude… that guy looks half-asleep or stoned or something…â€ most likely, that video/headshot/etc was filmed very near 6 oâ€™clock in the morning.
Those were good times.
The folks I worked with were some of the most creative, hardworking people Iâ€™ve ever been around.Â Those poor sun-deprived bastards are worked to death. A 60 hour work week would most likely make them happier than THIS.Â Â
I learned a lot.Â In fact, most of the people I was around were incredibly nice, cooperative and accommodating to what we were trying to do.
In 4 seasons, we produced 7 original features, consisting of nearly 100 individual episodes, most of which I played a significant role in conceptualizing and creating.
Those features included:
Taking It To The Streets
Whoâ€™s Got Game
High Five Kansas City
The Royal Inquisition
My Buddy, Zack
and Major League Philosophy (the long lost gem)
â€œMajor League Philosophyâ€ was a feature that never seemed to take flight.Â In fact, I donâ€™t believe it ever aired out there.Â The issue with it wasnâ€™t content, per se, it was just a little too subtle, and required you to hear every single word that was spoken, which we all know can be difficult out there.Â This is a feature that I remember someone saying would be great if it were played at a movie theatre.
I just remember how great it was working with the Skip. He was always incredibly candid and went out of his way to be nice to me.
All that said, letâ€™s consider this the first in a series of Valentineâ€™s to yesteryear. And while this video is likely the only one that never saw airtime, the videos to follow will be ones never posted on YouTube or rarely shown. That means, if you didnâ€™t happen to be out there on that particular day… you will have never seen them. And there are some real pearls, folks. There are some doozys, indeed.
Â Bonus LOST INTERVIEW with Trey Hillman