If You Asked, I Would Have Told You

If you asked I would have told you:

The University of Arizona may rank No. 1, but I don't see them making the Final Four.

Putting Kemper Marley on the cover ensures Phoenix Metro magazine's place as Arizona's most contemptible publication.

The rise of Sam Skinner from lickspittle to U.S. transportation secretary merely accentuates his character flaws.

Bryant Gumbel gets my vote as TV's most arrogant and loathsome personality.

That four-page memo Gumbel wrote knocking his Today fellow workers became front-page news. At least, it was front page in New York and Los Angeles and USA Today.

Our own Arizona Republic-- demonstrating its usual aversion to the bright and topical--buried the Gumbel story deep inside the bowels of the paper.

Gumbel charged that Willard Scott, the weatherman, was killing the show with his birthday wishes and bad taste.

Gumbel suggested that without a weather report, Today's first half-hour could be a thinking man's show.

I have a better idea. Why not devote the full half-hour to Gumbel. He could show off one of his new $1,200 suits and his Gucci loafers. Gumbel and Jane Pauley could engage in what that dreadful pair thinks is bright conversation.

Together, Gumbel and Pauley could send a vast portion of Today's nationwide audience back to sleep.

Charlie Keating will never get out from under Lincoln Savings and Loan.

Despite their loss Sunday to Syracuse, I pick Georgetown to win the NCAA tournament.

All Senator John McCain proved in the Tower confirmation fight is that he'll gladly step over anyone's civil rights in a clutch.

The magical days of the Chicago Cubs are over. Cub fans, who always revel in the past, don't realize what's happened.

The innocent era of the Cubs is over. The joyous time when Ernie Banks could smile every day and say, "Let's play two" is long gone. So is Ernie. Vince Lloyd and Lou Boudreau made silly jokes in the radio booth. Jack Brickhouse led the cheering on TV.

The Cubs played in the daytime. That, too, will soon be a memory.

There were plenty of seats. You could sit anywhere in the park and watch the best players in the National League. Some of them--like Ron Santo and Billy Williams--were even on the Cubs.

Who would ever think the Wrigleys would run out of money to keep the club?

But it happened. . . . And now the Cubs are owned by the Chicago-based Tribune Company.

Here's the difference: The Wrigleys loved the idea of owning a baseball team. The Tribune Company loves the idea of making money. That's why the Cubs will leave Arizona when their contract runs out in 1990.

The Tribune Company will deny the deal is done. And Mesa will try valiantly to keep them. But there just won't be enough money to satisfy the accountants who run the Tribune Company these days.

I didn't think the Phoenix City Council was stupid enough to vote for Zev Bufman's amphitheatre.

The truth about the delay in hiring a managing editor at the Arizona Republic is that no talented editor will work under Pat Murphy.

Close your eyes while Judy Roberts plays "Never Let Me Go" on the piano at the Phoenician and you can imagine it's the late Bill Evans.

Nothing has been more pathetic than the constant figure of John Tower begging for confirmation as secretary of defense.

Why would he humiliate himself so much? The whole tableau has been depressing.

The lowest point was reached when Tower promised he'd never take another drink. I don't know how many times I've seen this routine. The prisoner goes before the judge for sentencing.

Your honor, he says, give me one more chance. It's the drink that got me here. Just let me go this one time and I'll never get in trouble again.

The irony is that while professing not to be an alcoholic, Tower was demonstrating the purest form of alcoholic behavior.

It was all too humiliating, No job is worth all that. And no man who would submit to it has the inner strength needed for the job.

Even poor old Tom Landry realized when he was finished with the Dallas Cowboys. Only alcoholic reasoning prevented Tower from getting the same message.

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Tom Fitzpatrick