AS EVERYONE knows, there will be no National Football League games tomorrow because of the players' strike. Much has been written in the past week about the effect of this labor action upon the athletes; the coaches; the owners; the networks; the fans; the cable TV moguls; the man on the street; the woman of the house; the purveyors of radial tires, lawn builders and beer; and in general the Republic itself.
What no one seems to have considered is the effect of a football strike upon footballs. Relieved of its position as the object of drama in vast stadia, will this simple leather bag pointed at either end and sewn shut in the middle be rendered purposeless? Is the football so specialized a spheroid as to be utterly without use if armored men decline to kick, steal, fumble, smother, hurl, punt, chase, snap, catch or spike it?
No. A football has a number of uses:
1. Shower cap. (Illus.)
2. Biodegradable time capsule.
3. Lady's purse. Remove laces.
4. Cocktail shaker. (Illus.)
5. Childproof pin ata.
6. Yacht fender.
7. Matching oil and vinegar cruets. Requires two.
8. NFL flypaper. With heavy shears, cut football into spiral strip. Dab with finger stickum used by tight ends.
9. Hydrodynamic galoshes.
10. Scythe strop.
11. Scales. (Illus.)
12. Heavy-duty plumb bob.
13. Pylon for model airplane races.
14. Throw pillow. (Let out some of the air.)
15. Mortar and pestle. (Illus.)
16. Life preserver.
17. Bicycle seat. (Let out a lot of the air.)
18. Insect bomb. First, fill the spheroid with Flit through the inflator hole. Next, snip off one end at its point. Squeezed gently, the football will dispense a fine mist for home or yard Use with adequate ventilation.
19. Pastry icer.
20. Freezer container. (Illus.)
21. Hot-water bottle.
22. Candle snuffer. Use half a football or less. Attach to a suitable handle. Good for large candles.
23. Rolling pin. (Illus.)
24. Funnel. Yields two.
25. Novelty biceps. Simply slip a football up each shirt sleeve and wait for the fun to start.
26. Trombone mute.
27. Japanese beetle trap. (Illus.)
28. Tougher-than-tweed elbow patches.
29. Tissue dispenser. (Illus.)
30. Macho mailbox. Afix football to a stout support. Remove one end. Paint on number.
31. Two-thirds of a shell game. (Illus.)
32. Vintage Cadillac grill sheaths. Fit a half-football over styling "bumps" to protect the chrome anatomy of your classic automobile.
33. Gerbil house.
34. Gerbil habitat. Connect several gerbil houses.
35. Whoopee cushion.
36. Jack-o'-lantern. (Illus.)
37. Fondu server. (Illus.)
38. Maracas. Unlace. Fill with dried pomegranate seeds. Relace.
39. Driveway markers.
40. Clothesline telex. Open the football at one end, add pulley on top. Suspend from clothesline strung to neighboring home. Place written message in football and push. Reply will return similarly.
41. Crab pot float.
42. Beanbag. Fill with beans.
43. Medicine ball. Fill with medicine.
44. Invisible coiffure support. To keep madame's beehive from collapsing, a football may first be planted on her head, and the coiffure built carefully around it. With a football underneath, much less hair spray need be used.
45. Decorator wasps' nest.
46. Big-job antimacassar. Split and splay, stitch to chair-back at hair level.
47. Jumbo tobacco pouch.
48. Dancer's ankle warmers. Open two footballs at both ends, slip over ankles.
49. Bell pull. (Illus.)
50. Sierra Club axe. With a football attached to a sturdy handle, you can chop trees all day with no ill effect on the forest environment.
51. Artificial clam.
52. Sugarbowl sugar bowl.
53. Superbowl soup bowl.
54. Cotton boll bowl.
55. NFL clothespins. (Illus.)
56. EZ auto locator. A football flown from the antenna will make your vehicle easy to find even in the Pentagon parking lot.
57. Ostrich egg cup. Yields two.
58. Bathtub toy.
59. Syphon. (Illus.)
60. Dress shields. One deflated football under each arm will remove the threat of perspiration on your favorite garment.
61. Hospital-zone cymbals.
62. Pencil sharpener. (Illus.)
63. Fishing bobber.
64. Bishop's miter. Yields one.
65. Yarmulkes. Yields two.
66. Humane mortar shell. (Illus.)
67. Breathalizer. "Sir, you have the right to refuse to breathe into the football . . ."
68. Bagpipes bladder replacement.
69. Duckpin ball bag. (Illus.)
70. Tea cozy.
71. Toilet tank float.
72. Pita bread breadbox. Most breadboxes are frank compromises. Designed to accommodate every sort of bread, they do full justice to no bread at all. But with half a football on your counter-top, pita bread will always be available as it should be -- appropriately folded in a correct environment.
73. Impossible-to-misplace keychain charm.
74. Bookmark. Football should be deflated.
75. Piggyskin bank.
76. Replacement billiard-table pockets.
77. Mole-hole bung.
78. Toothbrush. Apply toothpaste to end of football. Brush for one minute after every meal. Use an up-and-down motion.
79. Double-ended dunce cap.
80. Spaghetti a la el Futbol Americaine. Slice pigskin into bite-sized pieces and sautee with garlic and oil on hot gridiron 72 hours. Add tomatoes, peppers, onions. When pasta is ready, add one beaten egg per person, mix well, combine. Serves 11.
81. Carbonera a la el Futbol Americaine. Same as above, but no tomatoes.
82. Moped saddlebags.
83. "All-Pro" ice sculpture mold.
84. Weebol Gulliver.
85. Muff for milady.
86. Sportscar gearshift boot. (Illus.)
87. Sportsman's rock garden. Bury 10 to 12 footballs up to the laces, surround with myrtle, poppies, lillies-of-the-valley, etc. Footballs may be painted white.
88. Taxicab air freshener. Bristle with cloves, hang from rearview mirror.
89. Lunch pail.
90. Goodyear blimpette.
91. Juicer. (Illus.)
92. Fire extinguisher. Aim football at base of fire. Throw.
93. Moth ball. Aim football at moth. Throw.
94. Olkewicz detector. Leave a football lying around. If an Olkewicz appears, he will immediately dive on it. Do not place near furniture.
95. Incubator. (Illus.)
96. NBA Shoetrees.
97. Dartboard. (Illus.)
98. Rec room nightlight. Use 1,000-watt bulb.
99. Worry bead. If worried, knead.
101. Dripless trout creel.