In the 18 years leading up to that, I really had no feelings one way or another. Bob Feller...Old dude; HOF pitcher for the Indians; fought in WWII; grainy old footage of him throwing a baseball while a motorcycle whizzed by. Nailed Hack Wilson's wife whenever he felt like it - nope, that was Dizzy Dean, sorry.
Now do you ever sit around with your friends, and just for your own entertainment, you bring up "the story" (sometimes known as "the incident"), that gets your one friend all riled up? Politics and religion are way too easy and don't count. Bar fights don't count. But stories, like getting screwed over by a company or being snubbed by a celebrity or professional athlete, are absolutely CASH. MONEY.
It just so happens that we have something like that today, and it's about the late Robert Bob Feller. This comes from friend of the site, and one of the founding fathers of BertFlex - Sir. He's been talking shit on Feller for ten years now, so it's finally time to have the last word. At least until I bring up the story again, and again, and at least twice every year until eternity, just to see him get pissed off. I'm an ass. It happens.
My Bob Feller Obituary
Written by Sir [@WherYaAtWhoDat]
Today, across the Interwebs you can find a hundred articles praising Bob Feller as a war hero. There will be a thousand writers who mourn the loss of a Hall of Fame ballplayer in their daily columns. Maybe a million people will Tweet about Feller's death. Almost everyone who mentions him today will imply that he was a good person because of all that he accomplished during his life. It's too bad that they're all wrong. Good thing that you've come here to find out the truth. Nobody else is saying it so I will: he was a Grade A piece of shit. Good riddance, you pompous ass. May you burn in hell.
As an ten year old kid, I was lucky enough to have box seats to the Old-Timers Game at Busch Stadium (story takes place around 1990). The Indians were my favorite AL team and even then I loved the history of the game (meaning I was already a huge nerd). I'd never seen the Indians play live so Bob Feller was the first ballplayer I had ever seen wear their jersey. I was even rocking my Indians hat since Feller was billed as one of the stars of the game. Obviously, he was the best player in team history so I wanted to get his autograph. He's walking in from playing catch and was signing for a group of people a couple of sections down. Running down to catch him just as he finishes with the other folks, I ask nervously "Mr. Feller, can I have your autograph?"
"Leave me alone, kid. Can't you see I'm busy."
I can still hear that wrinkly, old motherfucker say it.
I was crushed. The first time I'd ever had a chance to get a Hall of Famer's autograph and that's the response I get. These guys get hounded for sigs all the time; I get that. I'm sure they have to deal with creepy 40 year olds who think it's their god given right bug ballplayers for autographs and then sell them on eBay. I'd be a little bit pissed about that at some point too. But this is a god damned Old-Timers Game on Mother's Day a thousand miles from Cleveland and a ten year old Indians fan just asked you politely for an autograph. The only explanation I have is that he also used to punch his own grandkids in the nuts on Christmas morning, then force them to eat reindeer jerky for breakfast. That's the kind of man Bob Feller was.
Fast forward to summer of 2002. I make the trip to Cooperstown for Ozzie Smith's induction. During Induction Weekend there's all kinds of ballplayers and other celebrities roaming around town. I was walking in front of the museum and saw who I thought was Kenny Rodgers (the singer, not the ballplayer). Once I got closer, unfortunately, I realized it was just Al Hrabosky. Anyway, walking down the street, surrounded by his handlers, was none other than Captain Asshole himself, Bob Feller. This was my chance to get revenge for twelve years of pent up rage towards the man who taught me that most ballplayers, especially old crusty ones, are fucking pricks and usually are the worst kind of people there is. I start to walk up to him and one of the people around him puts their arm out to me and starts to say "No autographs." Before he can get it out, I say "Hey, Feller. Fuck you" and keep on walking. If only the thousands of other people he was a dick to were able to do the same, maybe he wouldn't have been such an insufferable cocksucker.
So let everyone else tell you about his war medals and World Series ring. Let them say what a good person he was, but I know better. I may not have killed people in battle or struck out major league hitters, but I have common decency and that makes me a better person than the late Bob Feller, Hall of Fame asshole and horrrible human being.
And just for shits and grins, HERE is a link to the Feller/Mike Claiborne "You Racist!" incident in '05.