-A Man Without Limits_
Mark Twain said:
"Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter."
So, so fortunate I am to have known my friend Joe for nearly 40 years. A father figure at times, a true sage & counselor, he was always there for me. And could he adapt and grow at any age...
An expert carpenter all his life, Joe also developed cooking to an art form - often with me by his side - and our Five Hour Duck evokes pleasant memories to this day. He taught me a few tricks in the kitchen.
Joe became quite the basketball player with some rather unusual shots, such as a blind, backwards performance...that sometimes went through! At the age of 54, Joe found himself on the mound pitching in a softball league where the average player's age was about 32, and winning games! To Joe, the phrase, "Age is just a number," was a way of life - his competitive drive.
His competitive drive and commitment to the team effort was such that he actually completed pitching a playoff game for the last several innings after his front tooth had just been knocked out!!
Joe's character in business was best stated by Mike Scammacca that, "In my 42 years of dealing with contractors, Joe was the most honest and easiest to work with."
Joe developed his political analysis skills to the advanced levels, and our conversations through all the years never failed to enlighten me. He was profoundly rational. Our philosophical discussions still elicit warm sentiments to this day.
Joe Pinto was my friend, ally, and confident. For those lives crossed by this Renaissance Man were indeed blessed....Rest in peace brother.
Dave Novick (& Gwen Novick)
Love Pam & Jeff
Peggy & Joe Deininger
Love Peggy & Joe Deininger
- Reply (1)
- Reply (1)
Father’s Day 2001,
Albany Times Union
Albany, New York
My father has done a very noble yet practical thing.
He has arranged to leave his body with the Albany Medical College, in Albany, New York, when he dies to spare our family his final expenses. I must say I don't like to think about it very deeply. But he's quite a specimen, my Dad.
Built like a bull, at 72 he still works carpentry every day and plays basketball three or four nights a week in the Colonie Seniors Basketball League. "O.J.," they used to call him before the name fell into disrepute--short for Old Joe Pinto
It's a bit of a con he runs on unsuspecting young hoop hotshots when he goes to nearby Washington Park looking for a pickup game. At 5 foot 9 (he was 5 foot 10, but age has shrunk him) he certainly is not built like the average player. It's really the thick white hair, uncomfortable dentures and Coke bottle lenses that throw off the unsuspecting.
"Wanna go a little one-on-one?" he'll bait the uninitiated.
"Sure, Pops. It's your funeral," his new victim will say.
And this is how the con goes down. First he cleans his thick lenses, and then loudly blows his big Italian nose before checking the laces on his Nikes. Slyly eyeing the competition, he saunters onto the court to take a few practice shots. By now the young player is totally ready to indulge the old man, and the game begins.
My father plays a bit rough. One-on-One is very much a contact sport for him, the lack of his own front teeth a testimony to his competitive spirit.
Matching his opponent point for point, he then borrows from the Harlem Globe Trotters, just to spice things up. He stands at half court, back to the net and pulls his tee shirt over his head. On lookers' mouths drop open at this point. Then, through the thin fabric, he takes sight on the opposing basket and tosses the ball backward to the net. In it goes with a clean and satisfying swish.
But here's the clincher. Driving to the basket off the dribble he leaps and spins 360 degrees and lays up for another score! In this way, he'll win some and lose some. But the opponent walks off the court a broken man, shamed, dissed and forever in awe of the legend of Old Joe.
The anatomy students may never have a chance to dissect this perfect specimen. God and Dad will be discussing their old basketball injuries looking down from on high while the shell of Old Joe, like the Energizer Bunny, keeps going and going for many more years swinging a hammer and swishing baskets on the urban courts of Albany, New York.
Because legends never die. They just get new Nikes.