Bo Jackson. That’s a name I hadn’t thought about for a long, long time.
I saw Bo’s name in the USA Today sports section and it brought back lots of Kansas City memories.
What’s so weird about all this is I’m not much of a sports fan. I follow the Cornhuskers and Jayhawks religiously, but I couldn’t tell you anything about professional teams. In 1991, I certainly couldn’t have told you who Jackson was.
So, when the hospital CEO at my Kansas City hospital told me, the PR guy, that Bo Jackson was coming in for hip surgery, I tried my best to hide the fact that I had no clue who he was.
Now, this was in the days before Google, so I couldn’t look it up on my computer. As a matter of fact, in 1991, the hospital had just made me trade my IBM Selectric (that’s a typewriter) for a huge, bulky Compaq computer with an itsy-bitsy screen.
Oh, the golden, olden days.
I finally found a sports-crazy friend who wouldn’t spill the beans about my ignorance and he filled me in on Bo.
Turns out, Bo was a super guy, very patient and kind. It took me a few minutes to adjust to the media frenzy outside as we wheeled him into surgery.
In the USA Today article, Bo said he was good for professional sports. He was good for our hospital, too. Everybody wanted surgery at the hospital that took care of Bo.
One more sports story. When I first moved to Kansas City for a hospital PR job, I saw bumper stickers everywhere proclaiming “George Brett for President.”
I finally asked in a meeting, “Who is George Brett?” Dead silence. Thirty other directors and the CEO were looking at me like I’m the dumbest guy on the planet. I was.
I read the Bo Jackson story while we were in Palm Springs over Christmas so, naturally, I’ve got a tall tale about Lucy and Desi Arnez. I may not have known who Bo and George are, but I know Lucy and Desi. One of the highlights of our Palm Springs trip was a visit to the “Lucy Bridge.”
You’ve never heard of the “Lucy Bridge?” Well, our tour guide, my college roommate who’s retired to the Palms, drove us over to the extremely exclusive Thunderbird Golf Course. Yes, the same one that the Ford Thunderbird was named after.
Lucy and Desi built a get-away home there and Desi used to while the evening hours away playing cards at the clubhouse. When it rained, the course would flood and Desi would tell Lucy he was staying at the club because he couldn’t get back to their house.
I guess Lucy didn’t believe him. She had a footbridge built above the course from the clubhouse to their home so Desi couldn’t claim he couldn’t get home.
True? I Googled it and couldn’t find it anywhere but, hey, Palm Springs is full of tall tales like that.