DAY #10:…just got back from a walk with my wife around our beautiful Summerlin Woods condo development in Fort Myers, Fla. the weather is Florida at it’s finest, a cool breeze kept us refreshed, and we sat on a bench under a shady tree to enjoy the “quiet” and the beauty around us…. also chatted with our friends who drove by us and clicked their windows down to say hello….. I told you that “luck” seems to follow me around and my Guardian Angel keeps protecting me….. as I hope that your Guardian Angels are protecting you….
so back to yesterday’s story when I realized I had a “dead end job”…but what can I do about it? It came to a head when I went to work one day and Jim, my Cage boss wasn’t there, he always beat me to work. every day for 1 1/2 years. I asked the boss George Behrens, “where is Jim ?”. George replied “you don’t know?, no one told you?”. “told me what,” I said.  he then told me that when Jim got on his bus to come to work, he fell to the ground and dropped dead of a heart attack…..   his job is yours now!  …at that instant, my whole life flashed in front of me as I thought to myself “am I gonna work here, smoke a pack a day, yell at my assistant all day and have him hating me as much as I hated how Jim treated me?…..not in this lifetime!  I read in the Daily News that the NY Mets were hoding “Open Tryouts”…for 2 days at the Polo Grounds where they would play their games until a new stadium could be built…. so I took the 2 days off work, put on my T/C uniform and took the subway to the stadium that I watched the great Brooklyn Dodger vs. NY Giants battle each other, year after year since I became a fan in 1951….. for Giant fans 1951 was an historic and happy end of the season.the Giants Bobby Thompson hit “the shot heard round the world” as Russ Hodges screamed out “the Giants win the pennant…..the Giants win the pennant…..the Giants win the pennant”…for Dodger fans, like my dad, it was one of the worst days of his life!…. he was so upset when he came home and I felt so sorry for him that I officially became a Brooklyn Dodger fan that day. boy was I in for a bumpy ride….everyone in my neighborhood was either a Yankee or Giant fan except for me and a guy whose name I forgot who lived at 77 Mulberry St. the bldg. attached to mine. I took lots of abuse from my friends as the Yankee’s or Giants took turns winning The World Series every year. but with “perfect timing” for me once again, the Dodgers finally won and were World Champs in 1955! I can still see in my minds eye Elston Howard hitting a ground ball to Pewee Reese and Pewee threw the ball into the dirt and Gil Hodges scooped it up and I jumped up and down in happiness for what seemed like ten minutes but was probably 10 seconds. boy was my dad happy when he came home from work! he brought home a Schaffer Beer 3 dimensional card board poster Dodger team picture…. I wish I had saved it…. he loved the Dodgers so much that one night when they played the Giants in the Polo Grounds and the game was on TV…. it was a school night so I had to go to bed in the 5th inning, I begged him to let me stay up to no avail…. so while I am “listening” to the rest of the game,  the Dodgers came up to bat in the 9th inning losing by one run, and with two outs, their MVP catcher Roy Campanella came up to bat.  Roy got a hold of a pitch and sent it over the roof of the short left field stands to tie up the game….. from my bunk bed (I slept on top, my brother on the bottom) I let out a yelp of glee and when my dad heard I wasn’t asleep, he shouted out to me “OK Joey, you can get up and watch the extra innings with me”…. I was in semi-shock, could’t believe he said that to me….  alas, the Dodgers lost the game when Dusty Rhodes, who would become a security guard at the 1964 Worlds Fair, got the game winning hit for the Giants…..
so get to the damn tryout Joe?…. why did I tell you this back story? 
 because I wanted you to know that for me the Polo Grounds was a Cathedral of Baseball, right up there with Yankee Stadium (they were just across the river from each other) and Ebbets Field where the Dodgers played…. yea. I had perfect timing to grow up when NYC had 3 great baseball teams and dominated Major League Baseball from the 40’s thru the 50’s…you can look it up ! 
Tryout day turned out to be a beautiful day…. I signed up as a pitcher… my height, i had to isolate myself from the pack. there must have been about 500 “dreamers” at the tryout…. so they gave us numbers to put on our uniforms and I was sent to the left field bullpen, which both bull pens in the Polo Grounds were in “fair territory”. you can look that up too!  …while I was waiting my turn to pitch, I glanced out onto the Infield and at first base was a 17 year old kid from Monroe H.S. named Ed Kranepool, who had just signed his $100,000 contract to play for the Mets. and I remember thinking, “I wish I was him”, recently I changed my mind about that (but that’s another story),……..  finally it was my turn to pitch…. I got on the mound and began to warm up and a Mets scout came behind me and said, “hey kid, you have a pretty good curve ball, let me see some more.  wow I thought to myself, this guy likes me… so I broke off some great (so I thought) curve balls….after a few he said “now, let me see your fastball”…after about 5 of my 80 mile an hour fastballs.. he quietly walked away, and that was the end of that dream…. they gave us a box lunch, Kranepool’s picture taking was ending…. he left the field and after lunch the head scout read the names of the players they wanted to return for day 2…… Joe Mosco’s name was not fastball no chance for day 2.  my Pro career dream had ended with the stark reality that I must come up with another plan to leave my Wall St. job……. the Mets, by the way, signed just 5 kids out of the 500 or so that participated in the tryout, so that was some consolation for me…..tomorrow I will let you know what plan to escape Wall St. I came up with…… it changed m life forever !  ….in a very  happy way….but then you knew that already because I was born into and have “perfect timing”,  I have more “luck” then I know what to do with and I have the best Guardian Angel in the whole wide world !   but other then that I am just a normal “Neighborhood” guy from Mulberry St.
Stay safe for day #11, especially my dear Facebook friends in NYC……. May God be with you ! …..amen.

Read the next post Taking Stock Day 11.