If you keep in mind that Kirk Gibson spent more of his formative years on the gridiron than on the baseball diamond, you can dismiss his war-is-hell, take-no-prisoners approach to the national pastime as a sad consequence of cultural deprivation. Prolonged exposure to football coaches has damaged better minds than his.
But it is considerably more difficult to overlook Gibson's attitude toward his new teammates. It has been evident since the first press conference as a Dodger that Kirk thinks he was brought to L.A. to serve as the de facto leader to a bunch of losers in dire need of his shining example. That is why it is particularly sweet to see him made the butt of a few practical jokes.
Those entrusted with Kirk's well-being should remind him that it is the traditional function, perhaps even the duty, of the prankster to afflict the pompous. The next time he is subjected to a little clubhouse humor, he should grin and bear it. Apparently, he could use the therapy.