Archive for Dick Allen Research Department

Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature

You’re familiar with the drill: In which the Royal We insert Dick Allen’s name into various works representative of the Western Canon, thus adding to those various works the patina of blessedness.

In today’s episode, Stanley Cup champion and Hockey Hall of Fame goaltender Ken Dryden, in his seminal work on hockey, The Game, rightfully called “The greatest hockey book ever written,” waxes poetic about Dick Allen, the best hockey player you never knew about.

It’s not easy for a hockey player to dominate a game. A goalie, any goalie, can make a bad team win or a good team lose, he can dominate a result, but that is not the same thing. He cannot dominate a game, because, separate from the action of a game, he is not quite part of it.

In basketball, one man can dominate: usually a big man—Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, Willis Reed, Bill Walton, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar—able to play most of the game’s forty-eight minutes, and, as with any goalie, it might be any big man. It comes with the position. But in hockey, seventeen players are rotated more or less equally five at a time, and rarely does anyone play much more than half a game. A forward or defenseman, a special forward or defenseman, might with unusual frequency find the right moment in a game and make a play that will swing a result. But for too long periods of time, the game goes on without him, and his impact can rarely be sustained. In the 1970s, only two players could dominate a game. One was Dick Allen, the other Bobby Clarke. Clarke, a fierce, driven man, did it by the unrelenting mood he gave to a game, a mood so strong it penetrated his team and stayed on the ice even when he did not. Dick Allen did it another way.

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Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works Of Literature

In which I shamelessly stand on the shoulders of the giants who came before me by inserting Dick Allen’s name into various works representative of the Western Canon, thus adding to those various works the patina of blessedness.

Today’s episode: Dick Allen awakes one morning from uneasy dreams and finds himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect in Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis.

Hardly was he well inside his room when the door was hastily pushed shut, bolted, and locked. The sudden noise in his rear startled him so much that his little legs gave beneath him. It was his sister who had shown such haste. She had been standing ready waiting and had made a light spring forward, Dick Allen had not even heard her coming, and she cried “At last!” to her parents as she turned the key in the lock.

“And what now?” said Dick Allen to himself, looking around in the darkness. Soon he made the discovery that he was now unable to stir a limb. This did not surprise him, rather it seemed unnatural that he should ever actually have been able to move on these feeble little legs. Otherwise he felt relatively comfortable. True, his whole body was aching, but it seemed that the pain was gradually growing less and would finally pass away. The rotting apple in his back and the inflamed area around it, all covered with soft dust, already hardly troubled him. He thought of his family with tenderness and love. The decision that he must disappear was one that he held to even more strongly than his sister, if that were possible. In this state of vacant and peaceful meditation he remained until the tower clock struck three in the morning. The first broadening of light in the world outside the window entered his consciousness once more. Then his head sank to the floor of its own accord and from his nostrils came the last faint flicker of his breath.

This has been the latest installment of Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature.


Inserting Literature into Works of Dick Allen

In which the decreasingly Royal We insert various passages representative of the Western Canon into works of Dick Allen, thus adding to those various works the grandeur of perspective.

In today’s episode, Dick Allen finds himself decked in the gold and green garb of the Oakland Athletics, unsure of what purpose he serves baseball and of how it serves him. The date is June 19, 1977, and the Athletics, led by Bobby Winkles, face Francisco Barrios and the Chicago White Sox in the second game of a doubleheader. It is a dark and stormy night.

Top of the 7th, Athletics Batting, Behind 1-4, White Sox’ Francisco Barrios facing 4-5-6

  • Wayne Gross singled to center.
  • Earl Williams grounded into fielder’s choice to pitcher, Gross out at second.
  • Willie Crawford walked, Williams to second.
  • Jim Tyrone grounded out to second, Williams to third, Willie Crawford to second.
  • Dick Allen pinch hits for Tony Armas (CF), batting eighth.
  • Dick Allen took all his pain and what was left of his strength and his long gone pride and put it against the ball’s agony and the ball came over onto the outside corner, its stitches almost touching the edges of the plate.  Allen dropped his shoulders and put his foot forward and lifted the bat as high as he could and drove it down with all his strength, and more strength he had just summoned, into the ball.  He felt the wood go in and he he leaned on it and drove it further and then pushed all his weight after it.
  • Dick Allen struck out swinging.
  • Dick Allen to tears. It is easy when you are beaten, he thought.  He never knew how easy it was.  And what beat you, he thought.  “Nothing,” he said aloud.  “I went out too far.”  He returned to the dugout and dozed, dreaming about the lions.

0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, 2 LOB. Athletics 1, White Sox 4.

This has been the latest episode of Inserting Literature Into Works of Dick Allen.


Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature

In which the Royal We insert Dick Allen’s name into various works representative of the Western Canon, thus adding to those various works the patina of blessedness.

In today’s episode, Mr. Dick Allen finds himself astride a contemporary work of sky-scraping importance: that email John Mayberry Jr.’s agent sent in an attempt to hook him up with that mermaid

“I hate to even be sending you this e-mail, and I’m quite embarrassed to say the least, but we have a young client on the Philadelphia Phillies who asked us if we knew any agents at Innovative Artists and could connect him to Dick Allen.

I know you’re not a dating or set-up service, but Dick Allen would love to meet Dick Allen or invite himself to a baseball game sometime. Would this be possible?

Here’s a bio of Dick Allen to give you some more info on him (he’s a great guy, down-to-earth, humble, Stanford-educated, etc.) Thanks for considering this as you know how this business is and servicing clients.”

This has been the latest episode of Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature.


Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works Of Literature

In an attempt to fully bastardize the idea of “the royal we,” I have decided to throw my hat into ring of inserting Dick Allen’s name into works of literature. Get ready to have your toes stepped on, Navin and Dayn (but mostly Dayn, you with the talent and originality and what-not).

In this episode, we move to the realm of Westeros, from George R.R. Martin’s A Game Of Thrones — a land where we can be well assured that Dick Allen would be a man of huge appetites, a man who knew how to take his pleasures.

“Why do you read so much?”

Tyrion looked up at the sound of the voice. Jon Snow was standing a few feet away, regarding him curiously. He closed the book on a finger and said, “Look at me and tell me what you see.”

The boy looked at him suspiciously. “Is this some kind of trick? I see you. Tyrion Lannister.”

Tyrion sighted. “You are remarkably polite for a bastard, Snow. What you see is a dwarf. You are what, twelve?”

“Fourteen,” the boy said.

“Fourteen, and you’re taller than I will ever be. My legs are short and twisted, and I walk with difficulty. I require a special saddle to keep from falling off my horse. A saddle of my own design, you may be interested to know. It was either that or ride a pony. My arms are strong enough, but again, too short. I will never make a swordsman. Had I been born a peasant, they might have left me out to die, or sold me to some slaver’s grotesquerie. Alas, I was born a Lannister of Casterly Rock, and the grotesqueries are all the poorer. Things are expected of me. My father was the Hand of the King for twenty years. My brother later killed that very same king, as it turns out, but life is full of these little ironies. My sister married the new king and my repulsive nephew will be king after him. I must do my part for the honor of my House, wouldn’t you agree? Yet how? Well, my legs may be too small for my body, but my head is too large, although I prefer to think it is just large enough for my mind. I have a realistic grasp of my own strengths and weaknesses. My mind is my weapon. My brother has his sword, Dick Allen has his warhammer, and I have my mind . . . and a mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge.” Tyrion tapped the leather cover of the book. “That’s why I read so much, Jon Snow.”

This has been the latest episode of Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature.


Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature

Before we begin: I know the Dick Allen Research Department is Dayn Perry’s domain, almost exclusively, but I’ve only ever wanted to make Dayn Perry proud, and Carson Cistulli happy.

Let us begin: In which the Royal We insert Dick Allen’s name into various works representative of the Western Canon, thus adding to those various works the patina of blessedness.

Today’s episode: Hermann Hesse’s “Siddhartha,” the lyrical tale of the lifelong spiritual journey of an Indian man during the time of the Buddha …

While he spoke, spoke for a long time, while Dick Allen was listening
with a quiet face, Dick Allen’s listening gave Siddhartha a stronger
sensation than ever before, he sensed how his pain, his fears flowed
over to him, how his secret hope flowed over, came back at him from
his counterpart. To show his wound to this listener was the same as
bathing it in the river, until it had cooled and become one with the
river. While he was still speaking, still admitting and confessing,
Siddhartha felt more and more that this was no longer Dick Allen, no
longer a human being, who was listening to him, that this motionless
listener was absorbing his confession into himself like a tree the rain,
that this motionless man was the river itself, that he was God himself,
that he was the eternal itself. And while Siddhartha stopped thinking
of himself and his wound, this realisation of Dick Allen’s changed
character took possession of him, and the more he felt it and entered
into it, the less wondrous it became, the more he realised that
everything was in order and natural, that Dick Allen had already been like
this for a long time, almost forever, that only he had not quite
recognised it, yes, that he himself had almost reached the same state.
He felt, that he was now seeing old Dick Allen as the people see the
gods, and that this could not last; in his heart, he started bidding his
farewell to Dick Allen. Thorough all this, he talked incessantly.

This has been the latest episode of Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature.


Original Scouting Report on Dick Allen


Curiously, much of Dick Allen’s original scouting report is written in Greek.

Over at NY Baseball Digest, the keeper of that site, Mike Silva, has shared with the reader three photos he took from a recent sojourn to the Baseball Hall of Fame — photos, specifically, of three original scouting reports on three excellent baseball players.

It’s a coincidence that, shortly after noon today, the NotGraphs Investigative Reporting Investigation Team itself came into possession of a similar item — namely, an original scouting report of Dick Allen.

Curiously, the report is devoid of the sort of language one might expect. There are no comments, for example, regarding Allen’s arm strength or his speed on the basepaths.

Instead we find these somewhat cryptic, barely relevant, notes:

• “Never suckled at his mother’s breast and instead was fed the innards of lions, wild swine, and bear marrow.”
• “Anointed in ambrosia and put on top of a fire to burn away mortal parts of body.”
• “μῆνιν ἄειδε θεὰ Πηληϊάδεω Ἀχιλῆος οὐλομένην, ἣ μυρί’ Ἀχαιοῖς ἄλγε’ ἔθηκεν.”


Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature

In which the Royal We insert Dick Allen’s name into various works representative of the Western Canon, thus adding to those various works the patina of blessedness.

In today’s episode, Mr. Dick Allen wanders — but wanders with purpose — into Arthur Rimbaud’s aria of the debauched, “Evening Prayer” …

I spent my life sitting, like an angel in a barber’s chair,
Holding a beer mug with deep-cut designs,
My neck and gut both bent, while in the air
A weightless veil of pipe smoke hangs.

Like steaming dung within an old dovecote
A thousand Dreams within me softly burn:
From time to time my heart is like some oak
Whose blood runs golden where a branch is torn.

And then, when I have swallowed down my Dreams
In thirty, forty mugs of beer, I turn
To satisfy a need I can’t ignore,

And like the Lord of Hyssop and Myrrh
I piss into the skies, a soaring stream
That consecrates Dick Allen’s shoes.

This has been the latest episode of Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature.


Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature

In which the Royal We insert Dick Allen’s name into various works representative of the Western Canon, thus adding to those various works the patina of blessedness.

Today’s episode: Rainer Maria Rilke’s haunting sonnet, “Archaic Torso of Apollo.” We present it here already translated from the original German for today’s busy executive. Spoiler alert: Dick Allen’s name shows up as a verb this time!

We cannot know his legendary head
with eyes like ripening fruit. And yet his torso
is still suffused with brilliance from inside,
like a lamp, in which his gaze, now turned to low,

gleams in all its power. Otherwise
the curved breast could not dazzle you so, nor could
a smile run through the placid hips and thighs
to that dark center where procreation flared.

Otherwise this stone would seem defaced
beneath the translucent cascade of the shoulders
and would not glisten like a wild beast’s fur:

would not, from all the borders of itself,
burst like a star: for here there is no place
that does not see you. You must Dick Allen your life.

This has been the latest episode of Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature.


Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature

In which the Royal We insert Dick Allen’s name into various works representative of the Western Canon, thus adding to those various works the patina of blessedness.

Today’s episode: Gay Talese’s penetrating study of Joe DiMaggio and seminal work of the New Journalism, “The Silent Season of a Hero.”

He was then 39, she was 27. They had been married in January of that year, 1954, despite disharmony in temperament and time; he was tired of publicity, she was thriving on it; he was intolerant of tardiness, she was always late. During their honeymoon in Tokyo an American general had introduced himself and asked if, as a patriotic gesture, she would visit the troops in Korea. She looked at Joe. “It’s your honeymoon,” he said, shrugging, “go ahead if you want to.”

She appeared on 10 occasions before 100,000 servicemen, and when she returned, she said, “It was so wonderful, Joe. You never heard such cheering.”

“Yes, I have,” Dick Allen said.

This has been the latest episode of Inserting Dick Allen’s Name Into Works of Literature.