Gut Rumbles

August 26, 2008

I can believe it

Originally published March 4, 2005

Here's a story about a celebrity asshole. I woulda lost my job that day, but I would have laid a shovel upside that fucker's head and then kicked him in the nuts for good measure.

I have a cousin in Dayton, Ohio who was a tremendous Cincinatti Reds fan. (Johnny Mays was also "Mr. Basketball" for the WHOLE FUCKING STATE when he was 15 years old.) He was playing golf one day when he saw Pete Rose and Johnny Bench on a hole next to the one he was playing. He hopped out of the cart and ran over to them with his scorecard.

"Mr. Rose? Could I please have your autograph?"

Pete Rose snatched the scorecard out of my cousin's hand, threw it on the ground and spit on it. "Get the fuck outta here, kid," he said. "If you want MY autograph, you'll pay for it." My cousin was heartbroken because he thought Pete Rose was the best baseball player who ever lived.

Johnny Bench picked up the scorecard, wiped the spit off of it with a golf towel and told my cousin, "I'm not Pete Rose, but I'll sign your scorecard if you want me to." And he did.

To this day, my cousin despises Pete Rose and loves Johnny Bench. He still has that scorecard, too.

What makes some celebrities act like colossal assholes to a 15 year-old fan? Did celebrity do that to them, or were they just pure assholes to begin with? I vote for the pure assholes to begin with theory, because I've met Arnold Palmer and I have HIS autograph. He signed my hat, and I was one of many people who aggravated him that day at the practice round of The Masters.

But he signed autographs until the sun went down. And he was a gentleman the entire time. What's so difficult about doing that?

I dunno. Ask Pete Rose, that shitass.

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