Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ogden Nash and the '69 Mets

I remember New York City in the summer of 1969 as an electric time. Neil Armstrong touched moon dirt on July 25th. In mid-August, Up the Thruway in the Catskills, there was a revolutionary music festival at Yasgur's farm.

Six weeks later, the Mets won the Eastern division after being in last place for much of the first half of the year.

Bypassing Woodstock & Apollo 13, Ogden Nash chose to memorialize the 'Amazin's. Nash, like many New Yorker's viewed the Mets as the National League successors to the turncoat Giants and Dodgers. Upon learning of their victory Nash penned the following thank you to Joan Payson, the Mets owner, and sent it to the New York Times.

A Poem

Whence camest thou, Mrs. Payson, dear?
Out of nowhere into the here.
At last thy patient, loyal clients
Can forget the Dodgers and the Giants.
Then what about O'Malley and Stoneham?
De mortius nihil nisi bonum.

Ogden Nash September 24, 1969

As a fan of both the Orioles and the Mets, Nash must have enjoyed the ensuing World Series immensely.

In a 1957 New Yorker poem, Nash expressed the following about the Giants moving to San Francisco:

Lines to be Carved on Coogan's Bluff

The candle's out, the game is up;
Who has heart for a stirrup cup?
Farewell Giants and Horace Stoneham
De mortius nihil nisi bonum.

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