Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Erin Go Bragh

Happy St. Patrick's Day! On this day I always think of Sean's Dad, "Big Jim", the world's biggest leprechaun. He always had some kind of gag going on St. Paddy's Day and I got to witness a couple. Like the time we went to The Hilton in Colorado Springs for lunch and a drink or two and he let a pig go loose in the restaurant. I think it was painted green and he might have let a couple pigeons loose too. I'm sure Sean remembers better than I do. I hope everyone has a safe and 'Lucky' day! I might have to enjoy a Guinness and a shot of Jameson. Ireland Forever!!


Sean said...

Yep, the pig escapade and the pigeons were both pranks that ol' Pop let loose more than once. If you ever knew him, you know that he had a real mischievious twinkle in his eye and a nose for upsetting the apple cart abit. He loved to watch people react. That's the key word, react. Once I was onto his schemes, and DIDN'T react, that burned him up. But it didn't matter, he had the rest of the world in a tizzy
The topper was the St. Patrick's morning when I was working at KCS-FM, helping out Chuck Baker with his Sunday (St. Paddy's Day) morning oldies show, which had a huge listening audience. Pop shows up with a BIG cardboard box and grandson J.D. in tow. He says he wants to give a present to Chuck, so (like a fool) I usher him, J.D. and the box into Chuck's studio control room. The control room had one entire wall that was glass and looked out over Pikes Peak and Manitou Springs. Right outside this second floor window was a big pine tree. I knew what was in the box, a very large "live" turkey, but I let fate take its hand in this anyway.
Chuck, live on air, says hello to "Jimmy Pat" the world's largest leprechaun, and asks what's in the box. Pop says he'll show him and opens up the box. The frightened turkey peeks out, sees the pine tree and, being a roosting bird, decides that safety means to fly into that tree! Chuck and the radio control board were between the turkey and the window, but this doesn't stop the turkey. He takes off and flies past Chuck and towards the window. Chuck ducks and screams like a little girl! Everyone is jumping around, trying to catch the turkey, trying not to curse (too much) on live radio, and just adding to the chaos. Pop, all the while, is standing back, laughing his ass off and having a grand old time. The turkey smacks into the window and starts to just fly around and around in the studio. Chuck is freaking out and eventually goes to a record (they still played vinyl some then) so he could corral the turkey and get his composure. Tho' pissed, Chuck was also laughing and admitted that that particular 5 minute span of radio was a classic. Unfortunately, he wasn't rolling tape on it....damn!
Anyway, we lost Pop in 1994, but he's dear to many folks, like Corm, and Jim's brought up in conversation every St. Paddy's Day. Tonight, hike a cold one for "Jim," who, incidentally, did all of this SOBER! He was a teetotaler his whole life.
I miss you, Pop!

-Sean Patrick

Anonymous said...

Not only on St. Patrick's day did "Big Jim" show his mischievous side. During Sean's wedding rehearsal dinner Jim stood between Corm and I for a photo. He told the photographer, "just a minute" and proudly dropped his pants. As you said Sean, it was the reaction. The picture is actually in one of Sean and Gwen's wedding photo albums. It was a classic "Big Jim" moment. So, a cold one is hiked to great memories of a good man.


MJ said...

OMG!!! These stories are hysterical. Please share more!!!