HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN:

HELLO FROM EAU CLAIRE, WISCONSIN - city of big bottoms and small minds.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

THE LEGEND OF VINCE LOMBARDI LIVES ON

I am currently re-reading a wonderful book simply entitled: "Lombardi" which was put out by the National football League in 1971, publisher: David Boss, Editor: John Wiebusch, Research: Steve Taylor and all photographs (in black and white) by the great Green Bay Packer photographer: Vernon Biever. All proceeds from the book go to the Vincent T. Lombardi Cancer Research Fund of Georgetown University.

I had forgotten what an in-depth portrait of the man this book really is. While I am still a long way from finishing, this morning while I was reading of his exploits as one of the "seven blocks of granite" at Fordham University, it got me to thinking that there is an excellent movie script in the life of one of American football's greatest legends.

so I went online and guess what! ESPN is already planning the venture! Here is an excerpt from a blog:

Mark your calendars now for the last weekend of January 2011. That's when ESPN, NFL Films and Andell Entertainment are planning to release a "Lombardi," a feature-length film about the former Green Bay coach.

If all goes according to plan, the movie will debut during the bye weekend between the conference championships and Super Bowl XLV in Arlington, Texas. Read the full story here from "Variety." (note: of course now they have set up the Pro Bowl in that slot - LRH)

The film will focus on the week leading up to the 1967 "Ice Bowl" game between the Packers and Dallas Cowboys. It's based partially on Jerry Kramer's memoir "Instant Replay." Kramer and Vince Lombardi Jr. are on board as consultants.


"Lombardi" is full of great stories from individuals who knew or worked with Vince over the years. Here is an example from Tex Maule:

"Whenever they'd get to a new city Vinnie would read off the list of bars and restaurants that were off-limits. Well, they'd get to Chicago on a saturday and of course the list was a long one. Once Lombardi read what must have been a list of 200 bars and when he got through he was furious, just because it had taken up so much time to read them. So Max McGee says, "Jeez, Coach, you don't expect me to make all those places in one night, do you? Next year let's come down on a friday at least.

Vinnie darn near split a gut!"

Another quick example:

Boyd Dowler: "His big word was 'horseshit'. When he'd get mad he'd steam and his face would get colored and he'd say, 'Mister, that was horseshit.'
Oh, that word, he knew how to use it. He would call me Boyd when I'd done something well, Dowler when I'd done something fairly well and when I'd do something badly, well ... he'd use my full name. He'd say, 'Boyd Dowler, that was horseshit!"

Upon re-reading the story of the movie in progress in the Green Bay Gazette, I found there was a segment for fans to write comments. Most were very complimentary but there were a few (from Viking fans would be my guess) that were very derogatory. things like: "Lombardi was a greasy Whop" and when the question who should play the part of Lombardi was posed:

Sasha Baron Cohen
Denzel Washington
Drew Barrymore

And to those idiots I would say I guess we know who to cast as assholes in the crowd if there is a scene of a Packer/Viking game at Metropolitan Stadium.

(another note: While attending a Brewers/Twins game in the dome, I noticed that Robin Yount was not on the playing field. I turned to the total stranger sitting next to me and asked: "why isn't Yount playing today?" His answer: "He's got AIDS!"

Classy.

Excuse me - I digress into ugly.

The point I wanted to make is that if you get a chance to buy this book, don't pass it up as it is a treasure trove of Lombardi knowledge.

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