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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
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The eyes have it
By MARC TOPKIN
Published April 2, 2006
Joe Maddon just wanted new glasses when he and girlfriend Jaye Sousoures walked into the Visual Effects shop on Birch Street in Brea, Calif., during the winter before the 2005 season.
What he got was a whole new identity.
Sousoures' decision to pick the funky black retro look glasses - Hugo Boss model 11064, called, of all things, the Yankee - changed the way Maddon, who is far-sighted, looked at the game.
More importantly, it changed the way the game looked at Maddon.
"I'd been getting glasses at the drug store, and I said to Jaye, "I can't stand this anymore, I've got to get real glasses, I think my eyes are getting worse,' " Maddon said. "So we go into this place in downtown Brea, it's a cool place, to get my eyes checked out and she tells me, "I'll pick out the frames.' I said, "Fine.' She came down and went right to these. I said, "Okay, but I'm going to get a lot of crap during spring training.' "
It was even worse when they went back to his hometown of Hazleton, Pa., where hip is not something you aspire to be. On the other hand, the Rays found the frames so cool, they are giving away 15,000 replicas April 11 on Joe Maddon Retro Glasses night.
"This has been unbelievable," Maddon said.
Sousoures said she wasn't planning to make such an impact with her selection.
She had been spent the previous few days on a project that involved looking at old pictures of her father, who wore the typical 1950s-style dark frames, and figures that may have influenced her selection. Plus, Maddon was constantly losing his light, wireframe glasses so she thought it would help to get something with more presence.
"I was just looking for something with real dark frames and bold looking, and something he could keep track of better," she said. "I wasn't looking specifically for the 1950s look, but something a little retro. Something old school yet new age."
The frames bear the Hugo Boss label but are actually made by Charmant. They are acetate, handmade in Italy, list for $180 and known internally, according to Charmant spokeswoman Rosemarie Mueller, for "simplicity vs. drama."
They've been available for two years and, Mueller said, are most popular in San Francisco and the Chelsea area of New York. As far as the company knows, Maddon is the most prominent celebrity to wear their model.
As for the glasses being known as the "Yankee" model?
"Too funny," Maddon said. "I didn't know that. We'll have to make them the "Ray.' "