Thursday, June 30, 2005

Duxbury Beach Layover

Hello to Sarah and Nikki, who I encountered in my travels.

I'm visiting Duxbury Beach, where I grew up. The Cape Cod house is 99% done, but until all is ready, I'm at my sister's house in the old 'hood. When I visit Duxbury now, I feel like Robert E. Lee when he entered Pennsylvania- an invader of a land that was once mine. It's surreal- I grew up here, but I stopped fitting in with the cliques in the 1990s. I moved, and tried not to look back- which isn't that hard to do when no one from your old neighborhood has ever called you.

I'm not bitter, though. I'd be the first to tell you that I'm a bit eccentric. I can't say for sure that I'd  hang out with me. Life does that to you. There are two ways to deal with it.

- Mope, see a shrink, discover some nightmare lurking in your subconscious, and undergo lengthy psychotherapy that will eventually cause you to blame your mother.

- Move to a nicer house on a better beach.

We here at High Above Courtside are all about winning the war, even if we lose a battle or two along the way. George Washington was beaten like a Gaza Strip protester for most of the Revolution, but he stuck with it to become first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen.

Dollar George is a muse often invoked in this column. If I can end up on some currency before I die, you'll see a smiling Monponsett at the wake. I'd even settle for the quarter, which GW would gladly cede- seeing as he is already on the dollar. When you have the wanton talent I possess, there are very few contemporaries you can relate to.

I'm rambling, but I'm also recuperating. One of my last acts as a Monponsett resident was to scold some children who were trying to hurry a huge snapping turtle across Route 58. When I saw how worried they were that this nasty f**ker was about to get flattened by some SUV, I decided to help ol' Gamera to the lake he was heading for. Big mistake.

Turtles are a pretty good representation of what coaches mean when they differentiate between speed and quickness. Continental drift can outrun a snapping turtle, but that head of his was lightning quick. Before I knew it, my left pinky was a bloody mess and I got my first stitches in a few years.

And the bastard got away before I could come back with the .44 and even the score. But he forgets my French heritage- I have recipes for his kind, and Mr. Stephen will eat anything if properly starved. Somewhere in Monponsett Lake, a turtle laughs. Someday in the future, I will laugh last.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

The New Republicans

Bring on the New Republicans!

The NBA draft creates 30 or so millionaires, none of them over 24. It is also the last culling of the high school kids. You just might call it the end of an era, but we'll get to that later.

The NBA draft makes more urban teens rich than selling crack to suburban kids. It brings more Europeans to America than a potato famine. It sends more US dollars south of Texas than NAFTA. It employs more big geeky white guys than a series of Abraham Lincoln vs. Frankenstein movies. You also get to see the early 2005-2006 versions of suits that a color-blind pimp would decline wearing. Jalen Rose holds that particular title(for his brick red pimp suit of 1987 or so), but the hip-hop generation is always a threat.

As you can tell, the NBA draft has implications that go far beyond getting dunked on by a 7 foot teenager. The next Lebron may have to go to a whole different kind of court to win his right to play...the Supreme Court. I guess all our 18 year olds will be needed in Iraq. 

This year's draft was unusual in that both the first man chosen and the goofiest looking person overall was a white boy. That Bogut kid- a rarely seen Australian Croat- looks like someone used radiation on Moe Howard's pituitary gland. They tell me he's good, and he'd better be....because he may be the first millionaire athlete who can't get laid. He may be, to my knowledge, the first white guy to be taken first overall since Bill Walton. 

Look for entertaining conversations between Bogut and Bucks owner Senator Herb Kohl, who voted against military aid to Croatia during the Serbian ethnic cleansing era. It should also be fun to watch a 260 pound Australian set loose in America's beer Mecca with a multi-million dollar contract.

Another goofy white guy with a first round deal is that kid the Clippers drafted. Russian as vodka, and the winner of the junior dunk contest in the European league- which is sort of like being the best lay in the Vatican. He could be the next Kobe, but playing for the Clip means he'll either suck or be injured.

My Celtics came out of the draft with Gerald Green, who dropped so far that I'm almost sure GM Danny Ainge has never seen a tape of him. GG is a high school kid, something Ainge has a tate for. Adding this year's child star to Kendrick Perkins and Al Jefferson makes Oh Danny (Ainge) Boy a dangerous man to have lurking around your local high school. Were he screwing these kids instead of making them professionals, he just may be in violation of the Mann Act.

Other draft notes:

- When Chris Paul dies around 2060 or so, a child named Paul Chris will be born in Georgia. Paul is the most recent addition to the Athletes Who Have Hit Someone In The Nuts club, and may take the presidency of said club away from boxer Andrew Golata- and given Golata's Polish heritage, it is quite possible that the AG thought he was landing solid uppercuts to the chin as he repeatedly managed to cave in Riddick Bowe in a title match.

- Gerald Green on the imminent age limit ruling: "If those older players need the rules changed to save their jobs, they'd better get their game together."

- What would you buy if you suddenly became a teen millionaire?

- With the globalization of the NBA, we get South Americans, Asians, Europeans....but very few Africans- which is ironic when you look at the overall blackness of the NBA. Maybe if the court were 25 miles long, more Kenyans and Ethiopians would pick up the sport.

- I don't think he got drafted, but I watched an interview with Sun Ming Ming, a 7'8" Chinaman with NBA aspirations. This kid is so tall, the sun never truly sets on him-without daily 3 hour handstand sessions, his forehead would always be above the horizon in all places but Death Valley and the Dead Sea....This solar exposure  would leave him as a pale man with a Manute Bol-style forehead tan. 

Monday, June 27, 2005

Travellin' Smurf

We're setting up the new house, and doing a bit of vacationing while the carpenters make the place baby-ready.

I haven't seen a sporting event longer than an inning since May. I saw exactly 0 minutes of Detroit/San Antonio, a series I was looking forward to since last August.

I did see the Tyson fight "highlights" on the news. Nature abhors a vacuum, so she must be hating on boxing right now. There is no Bad Guy out there, and boxing is a sport that wants- no, needs- someone fearsome. John Ruiz (who I have met, and found to be a nice guy) has the appeal of a road accident. Roy keeps getting tomato canned, and James Toney needs to Bonds up in order to make weight.

If I was a young heavyweight of any sort of ability, I'd be making a serious effort to get into trouble. I'd hire women to loudly proclaim (and quietly drop) charges that I either raped, robbed, or impregnated them. I'd openly smoke crack at press conferences. I'd hire someone like me to author outrageous statements that could be lobbed to ESPN on slow news days.

- "I like sodomizing the elderly."

- "I could take over the crack trade in Cleveland for thie money I make for beating these jokers."

- "I think that more women like to be punched in the face after sex than the American media lets on."

- "I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize."

- "If the Academy Awards were awarded to men with enormous genitals, I'd be Sean F***ing Connery."

I forget who wrote it, but the man who wishes for fame can become infamous. We could all wish for a million dollars, but we wouldn't want it if it were, say, a Wrongful Death settlement involving an only son. Being on a Wanted poster sort of counts as being famous, but the consequences often outweigh the benefits.

One of the few exceptions is Boxing. Mike Tyson- a common thug with (in 1987) uncommon skills. But at least 5 times in the last ten years, someone has knocked Iron Mike smooth the f*** out.  Mike is more famous than everyone who has knocked him out- even all time great Evander Holyfield. Sometimes, it is better to be famous than it is to be proficient.

Mike Tyson can make more money defending himself from Miss Rhode Island's rape charges than John Ruiz can make defending the heavyweight title for 10 years. Sure it's wrong, but money makes its' own rules, and it cares little for Commandments and Decrees.

Memories fade, but financial security can last for generations. I'm sure Roberto Duran can walk around without being recognized. Remember Michel Fowler? No one else does, either....but he was the middleweight champ in 1959. What do you want to bet that he gets a couple of hundred grand in speaking engagements a year? I bet he'd have to pay people just to listen to him.


Wednesday, June 8, 2005

Since you've been gone....

Hi everyone!

I apologize for my absence. I'm moving, and it is taking longer than I like. I'll be back soon.