17 April 2012
Question: What is precious, multi-faceted, priceless and the shining centerpiece of the 2011 World Series championship rings given recently to the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team?
Wrong answer: 103 diamonds and 50 rubies, at a total weight of 2.62 carats in gemstones.
Correct answer: A tiny but very distinctive image of the team's Rally Squirrel. That's the real gem of the 14-karat white gold package. That's the squirrel credited with giving the players' season a world championship performance in Busch Stadium, by virtue of making an appearance twice.
Since his lucky run on the field last season - followed by the team's own good fortunes - the squirrel has also appeared (in a decidedly more planned fashion) on bobblehead dolls, as a plush toy, and as an image on T-shirts and baseball cards, for starters.
The Jostens ring shows the Rally Squirrel airborne across home plate, right below the team's ruby-encrusted logo. But he is not stealing home: He has more than earned his right to own home plate.
His legs are outstretched as he runs, full speed, into history. And that's good as gold. Perhaps better.