* Please note - This man's head exploded seconds after this picture. But it's too gnarly for SoSG.
When Steve Sax first approached me to write for America's favorite Dodgers blog, one thought came to mind: MUST...FIND...MASQUERADE. Having grown up on the other coast, my opinion of the Dodgers was formed as much by their cameos in junky 80s TV shows as their work on the baseball field. And no appearance stuck more with me than our beloved father's performance on the short-lived Masquerade.
Never heard of it? As Michael Jackson once said, "you are not alone." According to the show's other fan...
The tongue-in-cheek series starred Rod Taylor as Mr. Lavender, the leader of "Operation Masquerade", a top-secret branch of American Intelligence that conducts missions using ordinary civilians, recruited for their anonymity and their specialized skills. The show aired for 12 episodes in 1983.In other words, it's what passed for hour-long drama before Steven Bochco and JJ Abrams got their hands on the format. Back in Delaware, little-nine-year old Delino DeShields watched every episode of this (and Automan), hoping beyond hope that my accountant Mom would one day get her call from Mr. Lavender.
In the thrilling episode "Girls for Sale," our Dad, baseball legend Steve Garvey, is recruited for one purpose only. To whoop Ninja ass.
But there's so much more to his portrayal of "Steve Garvey." He's a humanitarian only looking to do good deeds ("mitzvahs").
He's the voice of reason in a world under constant threat of ninja domination.
He's an excellent driver.
He's always up for a party.
HE'S STEVE F-ING GARVEY, OUR DAD! Let's see you try to stop a ninja star, sucka!
After watching this, I can't help wonder if our Dad could have been the next Arnie, Sly, Vin Diesel or, even better, The Rock.
PS - A special shout-out to the guy on Ebay who sold me the entire Masquerade series for five bucks.