The fantastic finish to Joe LaPointe's column about our greatest living Yankee:
- Late in his playing career, in 1958, the cartoon character Yogi Bear made its debut. Today, Berra has become baseball's grandfather figure, often quoted by politicians and essayists seeking the wisdom of the common man.
But to Lindsay Berra, one of Berra's 11 grandchildren, he is, officially, "my grandpa,” a man who follows many sports devotedly in person and on television and talks with her about many subjects, serious and light.
Lindsay Berra, who writes for ESPN the Magazine, said Yogi sometimes says he threw away his address book because "everyone in it is dead.” She also recalled Yogi's reaction when she told him she reported an article about a handsome tennis player.
"You should date him,” Yogi told her. "Gramps,” Lindsay said, "He dates a swimsuit model.”
"You got swimsuits,” Yogi said.
I met Lindsay Berra some years ago, and I've still got her e-mail address kicking around somewhere. The one thing I've always wanted to ask her, but haven't because I'm sure someone asks her every day: What's it like to have Yogi as your Gramps? I suppose that one can become used to almost anything, but Grandpa Yogi? I don't know that I could ever get used to that.
Anyway, you should read the whole piece. And for much, much more, there's my friend Allen Barra's wonderful new biography.