Las Vegas

And now, it’s happened to one to my favorite cities. It left a wake of carnage of untold and unprecedented proportions, once again leaving all of us asking a now familiar one word question: why?

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The Knee And The Damage Done

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A recent political cartoon from Ben Garrison.

In today’s society of social media and people getting mad over the slightest of things, I find that the more you say you protest, the less you do. Now, I don’t know how accurate that finding of mine is, it’s just something I think is ironically true.

I didn’t make a big deal out of my boycott of NFL games in light of the “knee taking” going on that I found disrespectful to our military. I found myself in the role of sportscaster Howard Cosell in 1982 when he swore off of professional boxing after he called the one-sided Larry Holmes-Randall “Tex” Cobb fight. After that night which saw Holmes batter his challenger over fifteen rounds, Cosell never called another pro fight, but continued to announce amateur fights, including the prominent 1984 Olympic boxing tournament in Los Angeles, which in turn spurred so many of it’s big names to the pro fight game. (One of Cosell’s post-pro boxing calls involve a guy you may have heard of: Mike Tyson.)

I have a similar take at present to Howard’s when it comes to the gridiron: I’ll watch college ball, but not the pros. I just want the NFL to stop taking political stands when in the past, they’ve gone way out of their way not to make political statements. I’m also standing up for my late father, who served in the military in the Army and was a life-long NFL fan. He’d probably be very upset if he lived to see what happened last week, and with his memory in my thoughts, I couldn’t watch the games with a clear conscience. So, I quietly found another way to get through the past two Sunday afternoons. I saw the Bucs scores as they came in on my IPhone, but that was all the involvement I took part in these past two weekends.

Then again, if you have told me a week and a half ago that we’d be revisiting the whole Colin Kapernick odyssey, I would have wondered what insane asylum you escaped from. The National Football League took the bizarre step of turning an unemployable quarterback into a martyr of sorts, with not one NFL team hiring Colin in the since the controversy has been reopened.

I’m not liberal on everything, I’m not conservative on everything. I have no doubt there is a bit of racial injustice that exists in our imperfect world – and that there’s always going to be a chance that our police departments won’t always do the right thing because they’re human beings. It also must be true that there are people on both sides that do not want equality as much as they insist so that they can eternally play us off against each other, just as Bob Marley said in one of this songs. Why have unity when you can have eternal conflict?

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Much like Howard Cosell that fateful night after Thanksgiving in 1982 when he called that Larry Holmes-Tex Cobb heavyweight fight/fiasco, I wonder if these NFL players and the officials who allowed the kneeling (which the NFL rules and guidelines clearly don’t allow, by the way) that they are constructing an advertisement for the downfall of the very sport that they are apart of. If the fans don’t watch, or don’t pay to attend these games, they are not only defeating their own purpose, but they are defecating on what would be the great players and stars the future would provide. Instead, these players will play baseball, soccer, basketball, and other sports.

I’m saddened by the events of the past week and a half, but I’m also very annoyed by it. One of the great leagues in American society has chosen to accelerate it’s own extinction, and on some level, I am one of the instruments of their demise. I wish I wasn’t apart of such a decision, but my family and my country come before a game.

Flashback: “Centerfold” by The J. Geils Band

I have to admit this is not my favorite song by J. Geils, but it is the most appropriate one I could think of following the news Wednesday night that Hugh Hefner had passed at the age of 91.

You heard this song everywhere in the spring of 1982, and for good reason. It went to the top of the Billboard pop charts and stayed their six weeks. It always struck me as one of those songs on the radio that was (no pun intended here) overexposed – a good song for its era but in the age of internet pornography available at the stroke (didn’t intend that pun, either) of a keyboard or a mouse, the song seems a bit dated.

As for Hugh Hefner, he was an iconic figure no doubt, though I was born in 1971 and became the legal age to buy his magazines in 1989. By that time, Playboy was pretty much the Disney movie of men’s magazines, and I was much more interested in Penthouse and Hustler because you, ahem, saw more reading those. The stuff you’ve read about Playboy having superior articles is absolutely true, by the way.

Odd that Hefner and Jerry Lewis died a few weeks apart in the same year at the age of 91, isn’t it, considering they were both philanthropists at opposite ends of the spectrum, you might say.

Post 1500

Friday would have been my 1,500th post. I’d thought I’d get there a day early.

Maybe I have a warped point of view of this as a blogger, but not a lot of blogs last as long to get to this many posts. I like doing this. I haven’t shared everything about my life on here, but I’ve shared a few stories and I’ve tried to explain my thought process about the world in front of us.

Again, thanks to all of you for reading these entries and for your continued support.

A Few Weeks Down The Road

The trip to the east coast of Florida to go on a casino cruise has been pushed back for about four weeks due to expected bad surf on yesterday.

Hurricane Maria was just a little too close, it’s wind field and area of heavy surf was just a little bit too large. Hopefully, the now scheduled October trip brings cooler weather (which for us would be 60 for a low) and lesser odds of some tropical cyclone brewing.

I was disappointed to hear about the cancellation, of course, but eyeing Maria and monitoring the Cape weather like it was a shuttle launch (remember those?), I thought it was the likely outcome.

Here’s the promo of the ship I would have been on yesterday, and the one I’ll probably be on in four weeks. Keep in mind this video is six years old, so I’m sure the cruise might actually have a few more bells and whistles added on by now.

They Thought Rome Wouldn’t Fall Either

I’ve probably mentioned the downfall of the NFL and American football a few times on this blog. After watching developments in the news and sports worlds over the weekend, I’m much more convinced it will happen. Probably within 20 years, possibly sooner.

Believe it or not, I’m not referring to President Trump’s remarks about players kneeling during the National Anthem and how he feels owners should fire anyone doing that in protest. I get why this is one of the biggest issues in culture, news, and the sporting world we’ve seen in a long time, but as big as the issue is it’s a side show, a distraction with what’s really going on with the NFL.

The bottom line is that the President is going to say what he wants to say, and the world will have to deal with it. I’m sure Mr. Trump is well aware that the reverse is true and will react likewise. The world won’t back down from him, and he won’t back off from them – it’s a Mexican standoff, and always will be. Neither side is going to change the other, or will even discuss their grievances at this point.

No, this is not the NFL’s biggest problem, as impossible as it sounds. The concussion issues are. Of course, the NFL would want to talk about any other hot-button issues as opposed to a medical issue going on with its players that the league turned a blind eye to for years.

The family of Aaron Hernandez is now suing the NFL, based on the theory that Hernandez’s football playing turned him into a murderer, then caused his suicide in prison.

It turned out that Aaron had third stage CTE, despite only playing 40 pro football games in his career over three seasons. If a court of law finds the NFL culpable, it might open the floodgates for past and present players to also sue. If that is allowed to happen, sooner or later the league will run out of money should a menagerie of lawsuits come forward.

By the way, I didn’t watch the games yesterday, nor will I be watching the Monday Night game tonight. If I have to choose between my favorite game or my country, I choose my country, somewhat reluctantly. As Chazz Palminteri said as the mob boss in A Bronx Tale, “Mickey Mantle doesn’t care about you, so why should you care about him?”