“He lit a cigarette… He started to stub out the butt. ‘I got down to, like, one cigarette a day and I don’t even like it,’ he said. ‘It’s weird when you get old.'” Thus was the hyperactive former Mets star Lenny “Nails” Dykstra portrayed in a March New Yorker profile that also captured the compulsive positivism (“When the market opens at six o’clock in the morning out here, I mean, dude, you got to be up”) he brought to management of The Players Club, a niche magazine for rich retired jocks, and a financial column for TheStreet.com, for which his stock picks have actually been pretty good. And when Nails was sued for non-payment of $138,872 in tax-preparer fees, he betrayed a similar manic buoyancy (“Did they actually think I would pay that much for a tax return? That’s insane”).
Nonetheless Nails bunted yesterday and settled the debt in court, reveals the Daily News, “chewing nonstop on a Twizzler licorice stick” as he told reporters, “We’re Mitch Williams in the ninth” (the News explains: “inexplicably referring to his former Phillies teammate who served up a World Series-losing homer in 1993”). He also described a previous $7,000 debt as “ashtray money, bro.” That’s the old pepper, Nails!
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on November 25, 2008