PittsburghSteelers star Ben Roethlisberger has his appendix removed, and you ask,"When will he be back?" Whereas I ask, "How much you want forit?"
This is becauseyou are looking at America's No. 1 collector of the missing, removed orreplacement body parts of famous athletes. In fact, I'm the curator of the BodyParts Hall of Fame and Diner. Our motto: Hey, it won't cost you an arm and aleg!
You want to takethe tour?
This is oursignature room, with the famous of the famous. There's Tommy John's elbowligament. The spleen that Peter Forsberg ruptured in the 2001 playoffs. In thepickle jar there is Mickey Mantle's first liver. 'Course, it was pickled beforeit went in the jar! Hah! We love to kid around here!
Let's see ...Leon Spinks's two front teeth (we're surprising him for Christmas), AlonzoMourning's bad kidney. Here's the three false teeth that Bobby Hull auctionedoff in Quebec in 2004, the ones he says were lost "during a bedroom romp ina Geneva, Switzerland, hotel." O.K., ewww.
What else? Youwanna see Ted Williams's head? I've got it in the freezer. No?
O.K., now we cometo a very popular exhibit--Testicles. The kids call it Ball Hall. Lots ofathletes are an egg short, but some of them never get over losing one. JohnKruk visits his a lot.
Get a lot ofhorse racing fans in here, too, just to see what they snipped off Funny Cideand John Henry. And over here is what we call the junk room, on account ofwe've got tennis pro Renee Richard's junk in here, from when she was stillRichard Raskind. A lot of people really--Hey! Fido! Put that down!
O.K., movingon.... Here's the Wing wing. Nothin' but arms. Here's the forearm that mountainclimber Aron Ralston had to saw off with a pocketknife to set himself free froma boulder. One-armed St. Louis Browns outfielder Pete Gray's other arm is nextto it. And here's a wild one. It's the right arm of the great bare-knucklefighter Daniel Donnelly. What happened was, a surgeon bought him as a cadaver,realized who he was, sawed the right arm off and mummified it. Be a funny backscratcher, right?
You wanna give methe finger? I'll take it! Here's Mordecai (Three Finger) Brown's other two.Here's the chunk Boston Celtics guard Gerald Green plays without. Ooh, here's agood one. After one disastrous North Pole trip, explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennescouldn't stand the pain in the frostbitten fingers of his left hand, so he tooka vise and microsaw and lopped off the tips. Hey, saved an HMO copay,right?
Recognize this?It's the prosthetic thumb that once belonged to Louisville center Wiley Brown.On the morning of the 1980 Final Four championship game, he left it on hisbreakfast tray, which was dumped in the trash. Killed his movie-reviewingcareer.
And this one'skind of cool. It's the right hand of world-champion Hungarian pistol shooterKàroly Takàcs. A grenade blew it off, so he taught himself to shoot lefthandedand won an Olympic gold medal in 1948! But, boy, we really need a refrigerationcase for it.
Here's a newexhibit. These are pro wrestler Chyna's breast implants, one of which rupturedwhile she was in the ring. Nobody likes a lopsided match, right?
Hey, come in eara second! Hah! That's our little joke. But we do have lots of ears. I hearpeople are offering up to $5,000 for the chunk of ear that Tyson chomped offEvander Holyfield but was never found. Please. It's here at the Hall, justgoing up in value. But I'm not selling. Anybody calls, I just tell them, "Ican't hear you."
If you go throughthat door, you'll find the $2 tour, for those folks who can't afford the $8.95admission fee. Basically, it's a bucket full of all the stuff taken out offormer NFL lineman turned ESPN broadcaster Mark (Stinky) Schlereth. He had 29surgeries in his career, just short of Joan Rivers's record. Hah!
That big box?That's just stuff we haven't cataloged yet. Feel free to go through it. There'sBill Veeck's wooden leg (when he had no ashtray, he'd drop his cigarette ashesinto a little hollow he carved into it). And the ear that Mick Foley had rippedoff by the ring ropes when he was wrestling as Cactus Jack. Do you like mylittle sign: we take tips!?
You ought to comenext week. We're unveiling our Metaphorically Missing Parts exhibit. You know,Ernie Els's heart, Ron Artest's brain, Barry Bonds's morals.
Anyway, that'sit. Hope you enjoyed it. Your lunch is included, so here are your corn dogs.Dig in!
Wait! Come tothink of it, one might be Rulon Gardner's toe. Dang, we've been looking for iteverywhere.
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This room has the famous of the famous. Here's TommyJohn's elbow ligament. In the pickle jar is Mickey Mantle's first liver.'Course it was pickled before it went in the jar.
PETER READ MILLER