Archive for the ‘Sports’ Category

Resistance is Futile

July 13, 2015

Remember what it feels like when you’re snowboarding, and you start to pick up just a little too much speed, on a slope that’s just a little too steep?  First the nervousness, then the fear?  And how your muscles start to tighten up, until you realize you’re in more trouble now, because the stiffer your limbs get the less control you have over them, making it much more likely that you’re going to crash?  And how the only solution is to release, utterly, and to let your muscles relax, and to embrace the speed?

Do you remember that?

Good.  Now, release into your life.

canyons stand

Truth in advertising

April 9, 2014

“Do not suffer from loneliness.  Go outside.  Go away.  It’s all the people making you lonely.

Pick a spot on the horizon and head straight for it.  Weave your way through a stand of redwoods.  Kayak an island chain.  Peer over your toes at the edge of a canyon.  Go to your favorite place.  Again, and again.

This is what you need to do.  Not just because it fuels your independence.  But because it reminds you you’re a part of something bigger.  And although it may not occur to the baffled onlookers who can’t take their eyes off your smiling mud-covered wired-up insane self, it will occur to you:

You’re not the one who’s lonely.”

~Nike ad

The Ocean is a Two-Year Old

September 23, 2012

Careful out there, kiddo

August 4, 2011

Male Weepies

July 16, 2011

A female friend of mine said there was really no such thing as a “Male Weepie.”  That is, a movie that makes men cry.  More precisely, she said that all Male Weepies were really just sports movies with an emotional punch.  Think Rudy.   Think The Champ.

I was a bit flummoxed at first, and feared she might be right – that guys could only permit themselves to cry at movies if it involved something as stereotypically masculine as sports.   I only further confirmed her suspicion when I recalled the movie that chokes me up every single time I watch it on late-night cable:  Field of Dreams.  (“Hey Dad, you wanna have a catch?”  I mean, C’MON!)

But I’ve been thinking some more, reaching back to non-sports films that had me getting something out of my eye.  Here are a few:

  1. Finding Neverland
  2. On Golden Pond
  3. Away From Her
  4. Life is Beautiful

Happy Birthday, Dad. We miss you.

February 23, 2011


February 23, 1936 – December 3, 2010

Who we root for

May 23, 2009

LeBron James is an awesome player and appears to be a solid, good human being. I have no idea why I can’t seem to root for him.  Same thing with Tiger Woods.  An incredible talent and apparently okay guy (maybe a little arrogant?  who knows.)  It’s not simply an underdog thing (though I do root against Kobe Bryant with some passion – just don’t like him.)  I wanted Michael Jordan to win everything, including the first Survivor series though I’m fairly sure he wasn’t even on the island.

Maybe it’s because LeBron knocked the Celtics out of first place, but I have no idea why I root for the Celtics.  KG and crew are also great players and seem like good human beings, but that’s clearly not enough.

Fanhood seems utterly irrational, and I guess that’s okay (at least in sports and entertainment – not so sure about it when choosing our real-world leaders).  More of a left-brain thing, which many of us probably keep on too short a leash (yours truly as a prime culprit.)

Arnold says “Don’t do drugs”

March 21, 2009

Highly recommend the film “Bigger, Stronger, Faster.”  Fascinating, informative (for me at least), thought-provoking, and at times disgusting, enraging and depressing.

And it’s not just about anabolic steroids.   Though it consciously lacks a singular point of view or judgment (those of you who hate Michael Moore will appreciate this), it shines a bright light on some questionable aspects of (American) culture, including its preoccupation with body image (and its evolution over the last several decades) and its glorification of winners (and corresponding disdain for losers).

Moneyball hits the NBA

February 15, 2009

Great article in today’s NY Times Magazine about the Houston Rockets’ efforts to look for greatness in players regardless of limited, official statistics.  It’s a nice reminder of how we often focus on the wrong things and how we can find success by changing our perspective.

It’s also a great article for you probability (read poker) fans out there, as it touches upon a competitor’s need to focus on the process rather than the outcome.  If you force Kobe Bryant to take his least effective shot every time down the floor, then you’ve succeeded even if he makes them all.  Or, if you push all your money in on the turn when your opponent has only one out, you’ve still made the right move even if he sucks out and bankrupts you.

Don’t do me any favors

December 26, 2008

As you may recall, I have a bit of an issue with the phrase “do me a solid” when used to mean “do me a favor” rather than “Sweetie, please take a dump now, for Mommy.”  (Oddly, it’s also the most popular post on this blog, hands down.)

This morning, it got worse.  Bill Simmons, a funny ESPN sportswriter and Boston fan, writes that he wants to “throw a solid to Andrew in Seattle.”  Is it me, or does this conjure up the image of those monkeys that toss their feces at each other?

(If they can can stand the smell of it.)

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