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Chris: While it may not constitute physical exercise, muckrakers have long run afoul of the law by pilfering familiar song titles to use as headlines for their stories. In fact, approximately 84.7 percent of the column titles on this site are also song titles. But rather than being drug into court and charged with “misappropriation of the use of the names of catchy tunes,” only the most enterprising journalists, like myself, could take a song title and deduce what sports story it could have been written for. Considering that it was 47 years ago today that the Beatles managed to get Fred Astaire, Mae West, W.C. Fields, Marilyn Monroe, Edgar Allan Poe, Laurel and Hardy, Albert Einstein and dozens of others (including younger version of themselves) all to pose together for the cover of an album, I’d estimate that the songs titles from “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” would make great headlines for sports articles.
Joe: Chicago Bears fans will be forming their own “Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band” this year after failing to resign Julius Peppers. To make matters worse, arch rival Green Bay Packers signed Peppers to a three-year deal.
Ralphie: A-Rod: “I Get By with a Little Help from My Friends.” Lots of people think A-Rod is this awesome athlete, but the truth of it is he has depended in his "friends" (a.k.a. drugs) to achieve his success.
Brad: White Sox GM Rick Hahn loves to make word plays. If he wanted to announce a player coming out of retirement, he could say "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" if Donny Lucy decided to return to the game.
Chris: Reports from Oklahoma City that Serge Ibaka was injured and out for the playoffs proved to be written either by someone who thought the Western Conference Finals would only last two games or by an unrepentant Pinocchio. Apparently, Ibaka received many balloons, flowers and get-well cards, wishing that he and his left calf were "Getting Better." And those cards helped him recover enough to play, as he taped them all together to wrap around his calf as support.
Joe: No one better exemplifies “Fixing a Hole” better than Ryan Howard. It took him five years in the minor leagues to fix the hole in his swing. Now he terrorizes NL pitchers.
Ralphie: “She's Leaving Home,” with Tre Mason, Gregg Robinson, and Dee Ford all going to Missouri in the recent NFL draft, moms of former Auburn players will be traveling to the heartland soon to watch their boys play in the NFL.
Brad: It just so happens that the Kentucky Derby actually began back in the 1800s as "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite" to further the fan base of the circus event horse walking. Mr. Kite apparently tripped during a performance and was unable to work for several shows. So the circus decided that proceeds from the next show would be donated to Mr. Kite. Unfortunately, the audience was more willing to bet on whether the walker (now called a jockey) would trip like Mr. Kite did than they were to just see a show. At one point, the entire circus itself was scrapped, and they just decided to walk a bunch of horses. Eventually, though, the walking was not fast enough to keep the interest of the crowds, so they started racing the horses. Which is what we call derbies today.
Chris: As the air blown from Lance Stephenson’s mouth drifted into LeBron James’ ear canal, followed by James and the Heat blowing by the Pacers for the Eastern Conference championship, I assume “Within You Without You” would be the most appropriate and uncomfortable headline to describe Stephenson and James’ relationship.
Joe: Nothing says “When I'm Sixty-Four” like swimmer Diana Nyad, age 64, who became the first person to successfully swim from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage.
Ralphie: “Lovely Rita” was a legend in her own time. Rita Meyer was a shortstop and a pitcher in the All-Americam Girls Professional Baseball League, and she tried out for the league while in Pascagoula, Miss., where I used to live.
Brad: Football star turned talk show host Michael Strahan will be saying "Good Morning Good Morning" all the way to the bank if he joins the team of “GMA.” Especially if he keeps doing the show with Kelly Ripa.
Chris: Headline writers display a keen sense of memory loss each time they reuse a headline. Chicago’s sportswriters will be put in that position this season, at which point I would stress to them, instead of unknowingly using the same headline twice, they could be confused for being clever by using “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)” the second time Julius Peppers and the Packers play the Bears.
Joe: I have often wondered what “A Day in the Life” would be like to be a major league baseball player. That was my dream as young baseball player. You just arrive at the park, dress out, warm up, play, shower, dress and go home. Well, it is not that easy. As young pitchers find out, they have to arrive at the park six hours before first pitch to do stretching exercises. Then some BP, then bullpen work, shag flies during batting practice, then head back to club house and relax for a while. They play cards or video games. Then game time, shower and head home. Get up the next morning and do it all over again.
Try on a new pair of Sports Briefs with the Gab Four every Friday. Find out more about Joe, Chris, Brad and Ralphie, and read their solo columns on their individual pages.