meta name=”robots” content=”index, follow” Meschery's Musings of Sports, Literature, and Life Meschery's Musings on Sports, Literature and Life: 2015-12-06

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.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Sports News from Monday's Bee

The Sacramento B is not the San Francisco Chronicle, but it will have to do since this paper services my adopted city. My biggest complaint, of course, is lots of news about the Kings, and not much about my Golden State Warriors. Well, Duh, Meschery, why would they cover a team that regularly kicks the Kings in the butt?

Still, the B's sport page generates fodder for this Blog. First, I'd like to comment on the article about the Kings Defense, with a capital D because it is probably the main reason for most of their losses. Fellows, listen carefully if you're reading this, it's not about the defensive scheme; it's about heart and guts and a willingness to attack on D and to close out on every single pass, and I mean every one, not just the first one or the second one, but the third, fourth or fifth pass, and to help each other and to talk to each other. It's that easy. And, that hard. But, men, if you're not willing, you'll never do it.

I was struck by a creative headline for College Basketball: Oklahoma cruises past Villanova at Pearl Harbor. Great verb given the setting.

LeBron is a Nike lifer. Can anybody tell me where Nike is producing LeBron's shoes? Is Nike still paying pauper's wages in Vietnam? Or is it Indonesia? Anyway, Nike won't reveal what it pays workers. I'm guessing somewhere around 50 cents an hour. Maybe LeBron can share some of his wealth with those underpaid folks, huh? Or perhaps the Oregon Ducks who are heavily endowed by Mr. Knight, owner of Nike, might want to skip a couple of snappy uniforms and donate the $ to the workers. Oh, all right, I own up to being knee jerk liberal. But who out there doesn't see a terrible corporate injustice going on?

Class Action OK'd in NCAA Lawsuits. Good deal. The NCAA has to come up with a better solution as to how they compensate athletes in basketball and football who are generating so much wealth for their universities. I don't see it as a money issue. The value of a free ride is enormous in our society today. If my grandson wanted to attend my Alma mater today, he'd have to pay $50 grand a year, tuition, room and board. So, athletes, take your increased stipend and suck it up. It's an education issue. What I see that the universities need to do (must do) is provide their athletes lifetime scholarships. That way if these kids leave school early, they can come back at any time later in their lives to earn their degrees. Same goes for athletes who go four years but don't graduate. Or drop out of college after a couple of years unable to reconcile the high level of training and the required classroom work. Whatever? A formula can be created to identify the worthy and exclude the slackers.

Is Tony Romo snake bitten or what. I've never been a Cowboys fan, not since the days when they advertised themselves as America's team. Give me a break. But I've to fee increasingly sorry for Romo who is a fine quarterback, perhaps an excellent one. This years team despite the loss of Murry could have been terrific. So let's hear it for Romo. The question is when will he finally decide he doesn't have the energy to go through so much rehab? The same can be said for players in all sports who are prone to injuries. Derrick Rose of the Chi town Bulls, for example.

I've probably used this poem before, but it is one of my favorites about skiing, which is finally happening up in the Sierras, according to my daughter, a resident of the mountain town of Sierraville.

Skier  by Robert Francis

He swings down like the flourish of a pen
Signing a signature in white on white.

The silence of his skis reciprocates
The silence of the world around him.

Wind is his one competitor
In the cool winding and unwinding down.

On incandescent feet he falls
Unfalling, trailing white foam, white fire. 


Monday, December 7, 2015

NCAA Football Missing the Boat & etc

It is so perfect that how the NCAA is missing it astounds me. Here's the way the Final Four in Division I football should look like: Final four picks get a by, while waiting for the winners of the Rose Bowl, the Sugar Bowl, the Fiesta Bowl and the Peach Bowl. The winners of those bowls create an Elite 8 and playoff at the Orange Bowl until Two Winners face each other for the NCAA Championship. Imagine the hype an extended series such as this would create.

World Peace says he'd like to coach, adding that in his playing days he was "reckless" like his only act of recklessness was his fight in Detroit.   Can he coach? Does he have the patience and the understanding of the game, the whole court, not just his position? Even if Peace is at Peace with himself, I just think he's too edgy to be a successful coach on any level. But if  indeed he isn't afraid to take on any head coaching job, why not start in a high school? God knows high school kids need adults to take an interest in them.

What is Cousins doing shooting tons of 3's. Granted he's got a decent deep ball, but where do you need him? He shows the 3 and who's on the offensive glass?

Warriors let the Nets "hand around" but I was never in doubt the way I was with the Raptors. The minute Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez started backing down their opponents (dribble, dribble, dribble, bump, bump, bump) and the rest of the team stopped moving and watched them, I knew the Dubs were home free. Even Carmelo, the grandaddy of all ball stoppers has made an effort to keep the ball hopping. Time for the Johnson, Lopez and others like them to get on board. It's a new day in the pros. Go Dubs!

No worries Raiders' fans. This is the turnaround year, and turnaround was accomplished. The Raiders are now ready to return to the John Madden, Bill King era. Hear that, Bill wherever you are in the universe.

A quick note to end the Pac 12 football season, consider if the Oregon Ducks hadn't lost their quarterback, Vernon Adams, for three games, would they be playing in the Rose Bowl?

Here's a poem I wrote about football

Why I never Played Football

It's not that I lacked courage,
I was big and weighed enough to make
a decent tight-end or with a little work
an offensive lineman or a fullback.
What I couldn't see myself doing
was getting dirty, playing in mud
or freezing in snow which back then
when I was young is what you had 
to endure. Perhaps these days
with covered stadiums I'd think 
differently. Still, there was bound
to be more blood playing football,
yours or somebody else's, than
playing another sport. Golf
for example. See how clean
those guys are out on the links,
how civilized in their cardigans,
in their neatly pressed trousers.?