I'm sitting in front of my computer and blogging again. My four months hiatus came about for a number of reasons, which included moving from the Bay Area back to Sacramento. But mostly I've been too busy finishing the upteenth and final draft of my first novel Mr. Dolby's Dream, a story about an aspiring pro basketball player and his autistic nephew, at the same time that I've been putting the finishing touches on my new book of poetry, Some Men, due to be published April 10th. Hardly time to breathe, let alone blog. But with our housing situation under control and both writing projects done, and the shortened NBA season drawing to a close, it's time to deliver my ten cents worth of commentary. Lots to catch up on, and some wonderful sports poems to share with you - whether you like poetry or not. If not, perhaps I can convert you.
Comment #1: I'd like to call out Peter Vescey for a recent article he wrote about Phil Jackson coaching the Knicks in which he refers to moi as a power forward, pot smoking, motor-cycle riding, midnight cowboy, hippie poet. Do your research Peter. I've never driven a motorcycle in my life.
Comment #2: The shortened season and the new NBA CBA. The players got real, the owners finally gave a little ground, and a contract was signed. Most importantly, although not a lot was made of it, people working at and around NBA arenas were able to get back to work. Now that this is settled, owners, administrators, players, and coaches should resolve to spend the rest of the CBA years devoted to lowering costs to its loyal fans. Give the little guy a break! He and she have been shelling out big bucks (check out the price of a less than delicious hotdog) in order for owners, players, and coaches to reward themselves Big Bucks for a long, long, long, long...long...long time.
Oops!!! Reading over the last comment, I must be more of a socialist than I thought. How dare I think of the average loyal fans trying to figure out how they can afford to buy season ticket to a professional sporting event, short of mortgaging their houses.
Comment #3: I've been meaning to ask this question for awhile. Is there any chance that any of the NBA dance teams might in this lifetime or any lifetime perform a unique, interesting, original, routine instead of the silly, long-haired-swishing, humping, boring, mind-numbing, robotic stuff they do now? Is this the message we want to send to our daughters and granddaugters of female beauty, intelligence, sexuality, and creativity? God helps us if it is.
Comment #4: I'd be remiss if my first blog back since the start of the NBA season didn't have a Jeremy Lin component. Congratulations, Jeremy. Someday, when you attain true iconic status, you may have a park in the Bay Area named after you the way Willie Woo Woo Wong has in the North Beach District of San Francisco. Willie was older than me, but I played against him in AAU games. One hell of a guard. And there was my teammate Al Mock, at six-five, another legend from Chinatown, a smooth shooter on my Lowell High Team and there was my favorite little man, Norman Ow-Young, redefining prep quickness. You're top notch, Jeremy, but I want to remind my readers of the Chinese basketball greats from the Bay Area. Tradition is a good thing.
Comment #5: Gutsy Move Award to Golden State Warriors and owners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber for the recent trade they made. If Andrew Bogut stays healthy, the Warriors have a legit center for the first time since Nate Thurmond. My apologies to Clifford Raye, but we're talking a franchise quality big. And congratulations to Warriors owners and administrator Rick Welch for retiring Chris Mullins jersey and to Chris for his class act. I'm not sure I would have been as generous with Don Nelson as he was.
Okay, a good start. Now for today's sports poem. Opening of baseball season upon us, so a baseball poem seems in order. I'm crazy about this strange little poem. I was a huge Supremes fan. Ditto most of Mo Town.
Allegiances by Forrest Hamer
I loved the Supremes as much as baseball
at eleven, my first base plate a stage.
So in those summertime lulls in action,
all base hits easily thwarted, I sang
the way Diane Ross did - rare and
heavy-lidded, often about some love
that did her wrong. The background girls concurred.
And I noticed myself changing pronouns,
suddenly aware that the other boys
listened closely to their first baseman,
more now than he had, reminding him
how necessary practice is with pronouns,
converting he to she at every turn;
otherwise a guy on the other team
might get past you, and then another one
could bat him in, the other side winning
and your whole team holding you responsible.
What my musings are all about...
Blogging might well be the 21st century's form of journaling. As a writing teacher, I have always advised my students to keep a daily journal as a way of organizing their thoughts for future writing projects, a discipline I have unfortunately never consistently practiced myself. By blogging, I might finally be able to follow my own good advice.
The difference between journaling and blogging is that the blogger opens his or her writing to the public, something journal- writers are usually reluctant to do. I am not so reticent.
The trick for me will be to avoid cluttering the internet with more blather, something none of us need more of. If I stick to subjects I know: sports and literature, I believe I can avoid that pitfall. I can't promise that I'll not stray from time to time to comment on ancillary subjects, but I will make every attempt to be interesting and perhaps even insightful.