GIMME SOME KIND OF REASON

“Times that try the souls of men.”  A classic description. I can only remember this time around the sun.  My past lives may be enjoying ironic smiles, however.  “The fuck did you expect?”  😉

My discontent is no longer seasonal…it is now continual.  I despise our CIC, our administration, the ongoing dismantling of our democracy.  More than ever before in my lifetime, America exists as a means to benefit those connected with our economic elite, at the expense of The People.  Nothing new here, that has been so throughout the history of Man.  Perhaps for me to expect – or hope for anything other than that was childish. Mea culpa.  😉

I’ve met our President.  Actually, the only president in my lifetime that I’ve met in person.  And the few minutes we spend along in conversation were sufficient for me to validate my perception of this man.  He is whom I’d already believed him to be.  I won’t attempt to describe our encounter here.  If ever we meet in person, simply ask me what was unique about his persona.  And I’ll recreate our physical interaction for you.  And we can then express our mutual disgust.

No. I write tonite about something far more troubling to me.  I’ve tried to find an analogy to express my distress.  Often an apt analogy is useful to engage a reality too appalling to directly engage.  And I came up with this:

Imagine your marriage or relationship; your connection entirely successful, fulfilling, affirming.  What if there existed a separate intimate connection for one of you…and you somehow learned of this?  Would this threaten your foundation?  Could you incorporate this knowledge into your reality and successfully continue?  Would this be a deal breaker and thus lead to a dissolution of your family?  Some of us have engaged such a contretemps…some of us have survived such a contretemps…some of us have foundered on such a contretemps.

WOULD YOU WANT TO KNOW?  Or would you prefer to exist without such certainty? I won’t judge you, I’m just curious about how we humans are wired.

I posed that as an analogy, boys and girls.  😉  Back now to Reality.  Yeah, my president and his administration appalls – just fucking APPALLS my sensibilities; perhaps yours as well.  But that is not the point.

THE POINT is that this nimrod managed to get elected.  However he got here, enough American voters gave him Their Voice.  THAT IS MY ISSUE, folks.  My America…Dear God.  MY?  Yeah, an illusion worthy of dismissal.  I live in a nation, many of whose citizens hold me in contempt as The Other.  As INFERIOR.

At 74, to realize how little my personal worth is valued by my fellow citizens –essentially based upon my race – is dispiriting, demoralizing.  I have never before, in my life felt less proud to be an American. Not ever.  So now you know why I feel so despondent tonite.   I know that many ethnicities exist across the world with adversity; Hindus, Moslems, Jews, Christians…

Perhaps I’m just tired tonite.  But I am surely tired…of US. Of our enduring, fundamental, underlying bigotry. Our UNDERTOAD.

What did Tracy sing?  Gimme some kind of reason..?  Please do.

 

SILLY WABBIT

SILLY WABBIT
Listening to Mason and Ireland, one of my favorite radio sports talk stations on the way home from the gym and they’re, of course, discussing this weekends PGA and Tiger Woods. A caller states that in order for us to say that “Tiger is back!”, demands that he go out and dismember a field of golfers, crush them with his dominance. That’s just an uninformed opinion. And that’s never going to happen, not in our or Tiger’s lifetime. And that is entirely his fault.

For decades golf was dominated by chubby white men. There were exceptions like Gary Player, still a fitness nut; Sam Snead was an athletic freak of nature, Arnie was muscular and physical and Jack was a strong young Midwestern boy…but clearly cornfed. 😉

Thru the 80’s golfers slowly became more fit…and the equipment continued to evolve…and continues to evolve to this day. The clubs, the ball, the shafts, the technology, all designed to make the game more accurate, more forgiving, more specialized. None of that trumped some anomalies like John Daly who swung out of his shoes and often also found his ball…or Calvin Peete, one of the first black touring pros who I believe still holds the PGA record for being the most accurate driver of the ball on the pro tour.

But Eldrick Tiger Woods was the perfect storm. He was a prodigy as a child and only got better. He combined imagination, physical gifts, course analysis and a genius for doing dramatic things at dramatic moments. And he transformed golf world wide. His early success simply compelled him to become stronger, more flexible and he transformed his body from that of a slender athlete to a physical beast. He altered a swing that had already won majors into a new swing that continued to win both majors and golfing events all over the world.

In doing so, he became an avatar to young athletes who might before have turned to baseball or tennis or football and inspired them to emulate his success. Tiger was not a chubby white man. He was black (obviously of mixed ethnicity), but trust me. In this world, either you are white or you are not. His charisma and success enrolled youngsters from Asia and S. America and Mexico and Africa and Australia, both boys and girls. And the fields in modern golf reflect this global melting pot, the LPGA even more so than the mens tour.

Tiger’s ambition and drive transformed modern golf, even more than the equipment’s ongoing evolution. Modern golfers are fit! They have calculated diets, training regimens, sports psychologists, gurus, swing coaches, masseuses. And seldom is seen a chubby white man in the Sunday final groupings.

Unless WW III breaks out and all able bodied men are drafted into armed forces, there will be no latter day Byron Nelsons. A very nice man and a fine golfer…but Lord Byron dominated golf during the years when the very best athletic men were in service to their countries during WW II.

So modern golf has the deepest, most talented fields in the history of the sport…and the richest purses…thanks to Tiger.  NO ONE will ever again enjoy the dominant run that Tiger offered us during the past twenty years. So what? He is now approaching 43. Tiger clearly has more fine golf ahead, assuming his body continues to hold up. The hunger is still there as is the will. His strongest attribute in my opinion was always his will. THAT is what struck fear into his opponents hearts, that passionate will! Look in his eyes at those moments and doubt his intentions.

This PGA season, TV ratings are up 70%! Lotta fine golfers out there, new ones arriving daily. Jordan, Dustin, Jason, Justin, Tommy, Ricky…but there is only one reason people who don’t even play the game, tune in to watch. To catch lightning in a bottle. To watch a transcendent sports figure in action. To turn to someone else and say, ‘DID YOU SEE THAT?!!!”

Yeah. Tigers back. 😉

 

 

 

YOU’VE GOT MAIL

I’m watching this period movie – and it really is that, tho it’s not all that old. It’s got a great cast. Set in NYC and it stars Meg Ryan and it’s her kind of rom–com (had that phrase even been coined by ’98?) But it has two elements that really place it in time past: It’s NYC, pre-911. That’s important. That kind of horror was then unimaginable…so there is a peacefulness, an absence of foreboding.

And it defines time and space in a narrow window of tech innocence: the emergence of AOL and email and chat rooms and…An ancestor of apps and dating sites; that brief period when skills of written self-expression and perceived anonymity generated online courtships, in a structured way…much as courtships in decades or centuries past had been conducted. Once by mail. Except stamps and envelopes and mailboxes and time passed between exchanges ran smack into IMMEDIACY. A keyboard, a screen, an internet connection.

All of which has evolved into texting and sexting and facechats and Tinder and…but during this narrow slice of time in the late 90’s, humanity embraced this new medium. So, no longer the bar or the wedding party or the fix-up or the hook up…but suddenly a path for wooing that was entirely new. And for some, entirely addictive. For a nonce, a way for people who loved words and expression to discover each other.

20 years ago. “YOU’VE GOT MAIL!” That jingle still resonates for some of your parents, youngun’s. It implied Possibility…That memory will remain resonant, an historic siren call from the technological tsunami that engulfs us…and continues to expand. 😉