Seeing the ball disappear over the fence, Thomson hopped crazily around the bases then disappeared into the mob of jubilant teammates who had gathered at home plate. The stunned Dodger players trudged off the field -- all except Robinson. No doubt knowing of "Merkle's Boner" 43 years earlier, he watched to be sure Thomson touched every base before he too headed for the clubhouse.

To this day, the shot heard round the world that day is the single most remembered incident in baseball history. I still get goose bumps every time I listen to the television broadcast (the first coast-to-coast live broadcast of a baseball game) by Ernie Harwell and Red Barber and Russ Hodges' radio broadcast (above), which is generally believed to be the most famous sports broadcast of all time.

Following the game, legendary sportswriter Red Smith opened his recap of the game for the New York Herald Tribune with the following lead (I have previously recommended American Pastimes: The Very Best of Red Smith as a great holiday gift for a friend or relative):

Now it is done. Now the story ends. And there is no way to tell it. The art of fiction is dead. Reality has strangled invention. Only the utterly impossible, the inexpressibly fantastic, can ever be plausible again.

Through my relationship with Sandy Koufax and my involvement in the harness racing business, I met Ralph Branca decades ago. He and his wife became my good friends.

It's a pretty good crowd for a Saturday
And the manager gives me a smile
'Cause he knows that it's me they've been comin' to see
To forget about their life for a while

And the piano, it sounds like a carnival
And the microphone smells like a beer
And they sit at the bar and put bread in my jar
And say, "Man, what are you doin' here?"

-- Billy Joel, "Piano Man"

So, take a breath, read a good book or think about some old memories (like Ralphie's pitch) "to forget about life for a while," as Billy Joel instructs us in "Piano Man."

I have this morning taken my own advice.

And I guarantee it will put all the nonsense in Washington, D.C., into perspective.


Greater Expectations for Altisource Residential
Originally published on Wednesday, Oct. 2 at 9:06 a.m. EDT.

This morning, I am raising my earnings, dividend and share price expectations for Altisource Residential ( RESI).

Several factors are positively influencing the direction of the company and are contributing to a more optimistic (and more "growthy") outlook than I previously anticipated. (Hat tip to subscriber H for pushing me in this analytical direction!)

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