Bobby Flay liked to play the ponies growing up. When he became successful, he bought his own thoroughbreds. One of them won last year’s Breeder’s Cup Juvenile Fillies race. More Than Real won in an upset by two lengths at Churchill Downs. Paid $29. She’s trained by Todd Pletcher. Pletcher apprenticed under D. Wayne Lukas who won a trainer’s Triple Crown in 1995. No horse has won the Triple Crown since the 1970s when Secretariat, Seattle Slew, and Affirmed won.
Skip Bayless is an ESPN personality, but before that he was a sportswriter. Won an Eclipse Award for covering Seattle Slew’s Triple Crown run. His brother is Rick Bayless; a chef. He was a candidate to become White House executive chef under Barack Obama, but Obama had Cristata Comerford stay on. He also competed on Iron Chef America versus Bobby Flay in 2005 and lost a close decision.
Alton Brown hosts Iron Chef America as well as Good Eats. Before becoming a foodie, he went to UGA around the same time as R.E.M. and majored in drama. He was the cinematographer for the video of the song “The One I Love.” Subtract Michael Stipe from R.E.M., add Warren Zevon, and you have The Hindu Love Gods. They did an album of covers about 20 years ago and are mostly known (if known at all) for their version of “Raspberry Beret.” Zevon is more well known for hits like “Werewolves in London”, “Lawyers, Guns, and Money”, and “Excitable Boy.” Also did a song “Bill Lee” about the wacky lefty pitcher.
Lee is lefty in more ways than one. In 1988, he was selected by Canada’s Rhino Party as their first American candidate. Ran for president against Bush the Elder and Michael Dukakis. Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson was his running mate. Thompson knew a thing or two about presidential politics. Wrote Fear And Loathing On The Campaign Trail 1972. This was essentially an anthology of his dispatches to Rolling Stone magazine as he covered the race. He continued to follow politics for Jann Wenner’s mag. In 1974 he wrote an article titled “Jimmy Carter and the Great Leap of Faith.” It was probably the first national exposure that Carter received. The piece also had an awesome digression about breakfast.
Carter went on to beat Gerald Ford in 1976. Once elected, he appointed his crony Bert Lance to head the Office of Management and Budget. The OMB had an analyst responsible for nuclear energy named Ina Garten. These days, she is better known as The Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network.
Warren Zevon also once recorded a song called “Hit Somebody (The Hockey Song.)” It was written by Mitch Albom, of all people. Mitch is in an ad hoc group called the Rock Bottom Remainders along with other writers including Scott Turow, Amy Tan, and Stephen King. King’s short story “Trucks” was adapted into a movie called Maximum Overdrive. Directed by King, it was produced by Dino De Laurentiis. Dino’s granddaughter Giada is a Food Network personality.
As is Sandra Lee. She’s dating New York governor Andrew Cuomo. Cuomo’s father Mario was governor. Before that he was a minor leaguer in the Pittsburgh Pirate system. One of Cuomo’s teammates on the 1952 Brunswick Pirates was Fred Green. Green made the majors and was on the 1960 Pirates with Dick Schofield. Schofield was on the 1970 Red Sox with Bill Lee; the very pitcher immortalized in song by Zevon. Enjoy every sandwich.