meta name=”robots” content=”index, follow” Meschery's Musings of Sports, Literature, and Life Meschery's Musings on Sports, Literature and Life: 2017-08-20

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.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Sports Academies

In this morning's sports page I read about Jordan Brown, Woodcreek High School's (Roseville, CA) 6'11" talented power forward rated #6 overall in the country opting to leave his school and enroll in Christian High School, a national powerhouse sports academy in Napa, CA. Jordan's father is quoted as saying he wants his son to be in a setting where he's challenged atheltically at a higher level. He's probably right from the point of view of the sport. But is he right from the point of view of his son's overall personal growth?

This last question bears on my problem with sports academies. Does it do young  athletes any good to lump them all into an environment where there is very little intellectual, social, and cultural diversity? By their nature, sports academies are elitist. Public high schools, by their nature, are not. They more closely imitate the democratic pluralism of our country's society. It seems to me that it would be pretty easy, perhaps even likely, for teenagers in sports academies to see themselves as special, a idea that will not help them once their sports days are over, and they have to fit into the normal day to day life. And, except for a tiny percentage who go on to become first round draft choices, those days come faster then they or their parents anticipated.

Sports academies, like charter schools, (another form of elitism in education) are not, unfortunately, going to disappear, and will more than likely increase in numbers as sports continue to become more and more big biz. So, I'm just blowing off a little retired teacher steam. I've always believed strongly, warts and all, in our public schools system being the best way to educate youngsters to be inclusive and compassionate thinking adults.

I Bless This Man   Pindar from Nemea 11 translated by Richmond Lattimore

I bless this man for Agesias, his father,
for the splendor and linked serenity of his limbs.
Yet if one, keeping wealth, surpass in beauty likewise
and show his strength by excellence in the games,
let him remember the limbs he appoints are mortal
and that he must put upon him earth, the end of all things.

In the speech of good citizens he should win praise
and be a theme of elaboration in the deep, sweet singing.  

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

A World Without Color

If this country from its beginning was the one the KKK, Neo-Nazi, and White Nationalists envision for America today, what a boring, bland, impoverished land it would be. Think of the music, literature, sculpture, art that we love and cherish today that would never have existed and that we'd be unable to enjoy. Think of never witnessing the great athletes of color that made us cheer and make us cheer today. Think of the cuisine that would not be on our table and in our restaurants today without people of color. Those tiny minds, those hateful people - their world so tastelessly white without the spices of color - such pitiful lives. If these hate groups were not so despicable, one might almost feel sorry for them.

More NFL players are taking a knee. Right on. Kap YOU started it, NOW, the rest of you brave men take the ball he passed to you and head for the end zone.

White NFL players, you got to take a knee with your brothers of color. You can not wuss out!

NFL Commissioner: "I don't "necessarily" agree with them [NFL players taking a knee}. That's one of the most wussy statements I've ever heard in my life. You agree or you don't. There's no fence sitting in Trump's America.

Americans of all colors, faiths, national origins and cultures fought and died defeating the Nazi in World War II. It's time to fight the Nazis again.

Let's start the fight in our own sports backyard. We athletes can get the ball rolling. 

To Satch (or an American Gothic)   by Samuel Allen

Sometimes I feel like I will never stop
Just go on forever
Till one fine morning
I'm gonna reach up and grab me a handfulla stars
Swing out my long lean leg
And whip three hot strikes burning down the heavens
And look over at God and say
How about that!