Try these pieces
for your puzzle

Sep 26, 2006 2:17 AM

We’re starting to get a better handle on some of these enigmatic NFL teams. Here are a few solutions to your puzzle.

Miami -4 vs. Houston: The schedule maker was kind enough to the Dolphins by giving them two stiffs in a row. Last week it was Tennessee, and this week it’s Houston; how sweet it is. I wonder if they’ll play Oakland next week?

Saints +9 versus Carolina: Carolina started slow and the Saints should score enough to cover the point spread. I’d wait until the line hits 10, which should be next weekend, then fire.

Cowboys -8½ versus Titans: The Tuna has an extra week to prepare for this game, as if he’ll really need it. They may invoke the Mercy Rule at halftime.

In the mid 80s I was approached by a few people to help raise money for a wonderful man by the name of Joe Jock. Joe was the announcer at the old MGM Hotel for Jai-Alai. Yes, we used to have live Jai-Alai games in this town.

Well, Joe needed a heart transplant and had to go to a Houston hospital to await a donor. Like most of us at that time he didn’t have the resources to do it so he really needed some outside help.

Needing advice I turned to Chuck DiRocco for some guidance. Chuck, who was known as a tough businessman, turned out to be a pussycat. He arranged for a free buffet for us at the Frontier Hotel in their main ballroom and told me to go out and sell tickets. He made it all look so easy I was elated.

My very first solicitation was Jackie Gaughan, who owns the El Cortez Hotel downtown. After hearing my pitch Jackie reached into his pocket and took out all he had, which turned out to be $785. "Here Sid, good luck with Joe Jock", he said. He didn’t even want the tickets that I had printed for the dinner. Now I was on a roll and actually couldn’t believe what had just occurred.

Brimming with confidence I headed over to the old Bingo Palace (now the Palace Station). Arriving at the office of Mr. Fertita, I was interviewed by his secretary, who listened intently to my story. She told me to sit down while she passed the information on to her boss. After less than an hour she presented me with a check for $2,000. I was hoping for a couple hundred dollars, so you can imagine my astonishment.

After that start it became easy to ask and receive money; and people say that this town has no heart. We went on to raise almost $25,000 for Joe. Little guys and big guys all pitched in to far exceed any of our expectations.

I can’t end this story without recalling the funniest impromptu line I’ve ever heard. At the dinner I was introducing the late great Sonny Risner and mentioned that Sonny said he’ll buy two more tickets if I let him address the crowd. Just then a voice from the back of the room boomed out "I’ll buy four more tickets if you don’t let Sonny speak."

The voice was that of Vic Salerno, and the crown laughed for five full minutes. What a night and what a town. How fortunate we all are to live here!!