2006-05-11 / View From the Middle

View From The Middle

Yeah, He's A State Senator, But Watch Out! He's A Fighter Too!
By Charles Rogers

"...(Kruger) could be a closet Clark Kent, the closet being where he would doff the gray flannel, put on the body-clinging Superman underwear, twist a lock of his hair and chase the bad guys...""...(Kruger) could be a closet Clark Kent, the closet being where he would doff the gray flannel, put on the body-clinging Superman underwear, twist a lock of his hair and chase the bad guys..."

State Senator Carl Kruger is a sport. I've known him for a long, loooong time and, if anyone has been an advocate of getting right out there, warming up, doing stretching exercises and getting into the thick of things, it's my friend Carl!

Testament to this is the lawmaker's foraging forward with the latest plans to show his excitement at the thought of bringing professional sports, such as auto racing, out to Floyd Bennett Field in the reasonably near future.

Sport Kruger also appears to have a penchant for the bellicose, becoming pugnacious now and then - to a distraction. Enough about that topic at this point, though - we'll talk about it later.

Now, Senator Kruger doesn't race cars himself, but he met with Paul Newman a few weeks ago to discuss the Floyd Bennett project. Paul Newman! Wow! Now there's a sport! After all, wasn't it only thirty...fifty...maybe eighty years ago that he starred in "Somebody Up There Likes Me" and, later, "Winning?" The former was about middle-weight champion boxer Rock Graziano; the latter was all about auto racing and propelled the movie star into taking up the sport as a hobby and then as a pro, driving and, eventually, owning race cars and franchises thereof.

But back to Sport Kruger: I admit I'm not too conversant with his other sporty traits. As I said, he is a belligerent type and, for all I know, he's got muscles under the dapple-gray vest and fluffed boutonniere. To look at the legislator, you'd see that he covers up his flamboyance rather well; a casual observer would think he was the epitome of ultra-ultra-conservatism, especially with his usually blue, black or gray suits (some of them daringly pin-striped).

The stretching exercises in the morning, however, develop muscles, you know. They could easily show him to be a closet Clark Kent, the closet being where he would doff the gray flannel, put on the body-clinging Superman underwear, twist a lock of his hair so it curls across his forehead and chase after the bad guys.

The main bad guy in Kruger's book lately, of course, is Congressman and would-be-New York City mayoral contender Anthony Weiner, who is adamantly against the proposition of having racing cars come to Gateway National Recreation Area's former airfield, with or without the Paul Newman condescension.

Recently, Weiner and Kruger got entangled in what most would determine to be a catfight in the vestibule of a local synagogue. There didn't appear to be any fisticuffs in the confrontation, but some of the faithful congregants attending an event in the temple learned a few decidedly secular words.

While Weiner expounded vociferously (pretty loud, too!), ranting that Kruger had allegedly mistreated one of his aides, The Sport gave him tit-for-tat. Both were pretty embarrassed by the spat, and apologized to the congregants and temple officials, but it was with a great deal of relief that they didn't see Kruger duck into a darkened hallway and come out - cape and curl unfurled - and confront his personal Lex Luthor.

No matter. The state senator stood his ground, which is not an easy task in front of the peripatetic congressman, who seems to be everywhere, just like U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, for whom Weiner used to work.

Just remember, if you're going to argue on the opposing side of an issue with Carl Kruger the Albany legislator, you'll see sparks fly because he's a pretty damned good elocutionist.

But if you're going to "get into it" physically, be careful...Be very careful....Under all that elocution, you may have to reckon with Carl Kruger, the SPORT!

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