I love baseball. I know it seems weird for where I’m going, but it fits. You see, one of the great games baseball fans discuss is what if. (For your Brewers fans, we lucky we didn’t get Gagne while we’re in this tailspin?) Thusly, in a Top 5 format, I will present to you 5 person’s whose impact would be much larger if they were born in merely one decade later.
1. Stu Ungar
Stuey was a card savant. He was fearless. He won back to back World Series of Poker Titles in 1980 and 1981. He would win several more tournaments before his demons finally caught up with him. It culminated with one last World Series of Poker crown in 1997.
But here’s the thing. If he was alive when the Poker boom hit, he would have been bigger than anyone. He combined the best aspects of Gus Hansen and Daniel Negreneau as well as the worst of Mike Matusow and Phil Hellmuth. In short, a Stu Ungar born 10 years later, would be a part of what would keep the poker boom going.
Tiffany in 1987? The start of a career arc that would last three years. Tiffany in 1997? Ahead of the curve, son! I Think We’re Alone Now would have been there before Genie in a Bottle and Baby One More Time. Also, she would have the tabloid trouble to strike whilst the iron was hot. She’d be going on a decade of fame now if she was born in the early 80′s.
3. The Cast of The State
In 2004, Dave Chapelle had the world by the balls. By 2005, he was gone to glory in Africa. Comedy Central replaced him with Carlos Mencia. It would be the start of the networks demise.
But what if a scrappy troupe of kids from NYU were making their way through the ranks? What if they were on Comedy Centrals radar? They’d be massive. And as for Mencia? He’d be introducing Luis! Who just comes in and says “YO QUIERO DIP MY BALLS IN IT!” over and over again.
4. Dale Murphy
There are those whom are masterful when in the throes of obscurity. Chris Warren had a spectacular run in the obscurity of shitty Seattle teams. Dale Murphy had himself a Chris Warren experience. He was a back to back NL MVP in the early 80′s. A decade later? He would have given the Braves three more shots at the World Series and won himself a trip to the Hall of Fame.
5. Paul Wellstone
Why? It’s simple. Paul Wellstone (D-MN) was the last honest Senator. He passed on in 2002. But give him another 10 years, and the world would have been a better place. He would have been brave and bold enough to take the senatorial lead from Harry Reid and maybe we would be out of the Iraqs. Fuck the Iraqs.