These are Tops: "Left Field Cards"–Letterpress Baseball Cards featuring Bizarre Injuries & Edible Ballplayers,
Posted by League Commissioner on February 26, 2012 0 Comments
Spring training is finally here and the Novel-T League players are arriving by horse, donkey, Rolls Royce, Pontiac, Brooklyn Ferry, whatever! But our excitement of seeing our vets tying on their cleats again and our rookies take the field for the first time is tempered by a certain amount of anxiety as this is the most likely time for players to injure themselves.
But ballplayers can be injured off the field as easily as on, and sometimes in very strange ways. Luckily, we were recently introduced to Left Field Cards, a series of letterpress baseball cards split into two sets. The first is on Bizarre Injuries (true stories of real major leaguers who hurt themselves in stupid and/or embarrassing ways, like one commemorating Nolan Ryan's 1985 injury when he was bit by one of his pet coyotes); the second, called Edible All-Stars, highlights ballplayers who share names with foods.
We love these cards–they're smart, strange, funny, and attractive. And not only do they remind us of the baseball cards of our youth, but they offer some very important teachable lessons as well. For instance, we hope Hester takes her jersey off first before she irons that A.
Hester Prynne T-Shirt: Hester Prynne the Puritan, Pearl Prynne the American, & Roger Chillingworth with the Wampanoag Indians
Posted by League Commissioner on November 11, 2011 0 Comments
It's nearly Thanksgiving, and as our thoughts turn to pilgrims and American Indians, we also think of Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter.
It's true that Hester Prynne's story is in many ways a symbol of the problematic nature of a rigidly moralistic society--particularly as becomes subject to its own myriad hypocrisies, inspired by collective feelings of guilt and moral superiority. But Prynne's story seems to us as also a richly nuanced and complicated fable of the birth of the United States, a kind of unruly bastard child born of romantic rule-breaking, manifested as defiant passions. (How much does that "A" stand for "America," anyway?) The US is, in a way, Pearl. And one could even see Pearl, we suppose as a kind of model for Twain's naturally moral (but far from moralistic) young hero, Huck Finn.
But one aspect that we often forget is that Roger Chillingworth's delay in making it to the village was in part due to being imprisoned by Native Americans. Maybe they already had a sense of his malevolence. Either way, we like the idea of imagining an early Thanksgiving with Chillingworth chowing down on maize and turkey with a bunch of Wampanoag Indians, whining to them about missing his young, hot, wife.