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Welcome To The Other Side Of Mid-Life

Welcome To The Other Side Of Mid-Life

Well Gents, I can no longer declare that “I am damn near 50,” as I was blessed enough to hit the mid-century mark on June 3.  It was a normal day — just one additional blessing.  I was able to rise up, look up and send up some praise and a prayer of gratitude.

Usually, I don’t think much of my own birthdays and birthday celebrations.    I prefer to think of my birthday as a day to honor my mom who did all the heavy lifting  as I was just chillin’ in some fluid waiting for the right astrological moment to bust a move and get some sunshine.  I remember it as clearly as a foggy day.  On that hot summer afternoon, Mom  hopped (more like wobbled, probably) on a CTA bus to Cook County Hospital where I was eventually born.  She did all the work. I was just along for the ride.  RIP Mommy.

Fortunately for me though, my friends like to celebrate my birthday and they really got to me on this one.  I received well wishes from many of my friends by phone, Facebook, e-mail and sing-a-gram.  That forced me to really think about the big 5-0.  It made me consider all the friends and people I knew over the years who had not made it this far.  I viewed my fortune from the perspective of a black man born and raised on the South Side of Chicago and remembered that generally and statistically my life expectancy was not much greater than my friends and neighbors, who died already between the ages of 17 and 45.  But it wasn’t just those who stayed Southside and struggled in life who passed.  I also have several very well educated and financially successful friends who died unexpectedly from tragedy and bad health.  No matter your “social station” in life, the next day is not promised.

So it was a big deal when I got up and celebrated my birthday by hitting the YMCA early in the morning to shoot some hoops.  I played with a bit more intensity than usual.  I was damned sure going to start the second half of my century by winning more than losing.  It would not have been a celebration to go 0-6 like I did the previous roundball session two days prior.   I played so hard that I sprained my foot and missed the next three days– but at least, for that day, my team won all but one game (with me running point of course. Take that Chris Duhon.  LOL.).  It was a great way to start the next fifty years (except for the sprained foot of course, but at least I was able to sprain it while doing what I love.)

While my mobility was a bit limited, I decided I would still take a little trip to one of my favorite places — the Blogosphere.  Not quite Hawaii or the Cayman Islands, but I found it filled with many wonders and treasures.


On my first trip around the blogosphere on this side of Mid-Life I was crack-a-lackin’ at warp speed until I reached a spot where no extraterrestrial had traveled before.  Early in my trip, I was reminded that being a Knick fan is a trip.  Since we have been downtrodden for too long, we have resorted to full-fledged fantasy — two levels higher than flat out wet dreaming — to remake our vision of our home team.  We are so emotionally challenged that many fans are throwing away the next two years of competition and playing with visions of OPP (Other People’s Players).  And the marketplace knows it . . . .

This was never clearer than the  fan voting contest for the cover of NBA2K10 featuring Kobe Bryant.  One of the pics (Probably designed just for DVJ (wherever he is), Steady and Paulnoize) had Kobe popping a Knick Uni.

Kobe In Knick Uni 2K10-04

Even your boy Spike Lee, the icon of commercialized Knick Fanaticism, is hard selling Kobe as a Knick.

But, it is not the “Black Mamba” that most New Yorkers are slobbering about on their pillows.  The New York MSM (especially that non-singing group of journalists called the “Knick Beats”) is selling the unlikely and improbable — the hope and hype that LeBron will dress up in Orange and Blue for more than a photo shoot or a cartoonish video-game cover.  LeBron ain’t coming but this pic won’t stop us on our trip to Delusion, two blocks south of FantasyIsland.

lebron as a Knick

I heard it said that “No Man Is A FantsyIsland Unto Himself,”  but sometimes New York Nation is like a lonely Gilligan’s Island, where the fans are watching James Dolan make love to Mrs. Howell, while the GMs run the team like the Gilligan and the Skipper but the press treats them like they’re the Professor.  We forget that others do not see the world from the core of The Apple like New Yorkers do.  Some people see the world differently than we do.  For instance, while many New Yorkers think Stephon Marbury is the most hated basketball player on the face of the universe, they would be stunned to learn that Starbury only earned the third spot of the  Ten Most Hated Players according to a poll sponsored by Bust A Bucket.  El numero uno most hated player was our object of desire — Kobe Bryant, who is seen as the Darth Vader of the NBA.


Kobe Vader


Green Goblinbury

Kobe may be the most hated but the scariest picture in the article was that of Carlos Boozer as Venom. It is a funny piece. I recommend that travellers check it out just for the laughs.

Carlos Boozer As Venom

Carlos Boozer As Venom

Wrong Turn At 3rd and Delusion?

Although some of us are dreaming about Kobe, we can remember that the reality is  the Knicks once owned a critical piece of LA’s near championship squad — Trevor Ariza.  The New York Times has a nice piece about Ariza’s development and his new-found stardom with the Lakers in his hometown.  While, Larry Brown thought Ariza was delusional and he told Ariza not to shoot, Orlando, which received him in a trade for Stevie Franchise, was disappointed that they had to release him in order to make room for Rashard Lewis.  Ariza is proof that a player with heart and will can learn to shoot with the right coaching. After being traded by Orlando to the Lakers, Ariza became a student of three point specialist Craig Hodges in order to improve his game.  Now he is very reliable from the tre and is loving the confidence his teammates and coaches have in him.  A long way from being delusional

Speaking of mentally troubled, I see that Larry Brown is very concerned that Michael Jordan is not going to be his boss anymore because Robert Johnson is considering selling all or a majority share of the Bobcats.  Current indications are that MJ does not want to buy at Johnson’s prices and he may be ushered out by new ownership if he does not ante up some cash.  Larry isn’t saying that he would leave, he was just musing about the possibility that he will need to look for another coaching gig. But, we all know “Next Town Brown” started looking for his next coaching job the day after he signed a contract to coach Jordan’s team.

Perhaps we should bring the Master of Delusion back so that we can ask him why (or whether it is true) that former Knicks usually look better after they leave.  Even Marbury seems to “look” better according to how he was depicted in the following promotion for his new workout video.


Tommy Dee @ theKnicksblog says that Nate Robinson is fairly certain that he will not be a New York Knick next season. Dee says that the word is Nate is saying his New York goodbyes even on Twitter. According to Dee, Nate wants to play for Portland which is looking for a seasoned guard, like Andre Miller, so that Brandon Roy can move to the 2-spot. He’s also believing that Nate’s time with the Knicks is done since the Knicks are looking for a new guard. He expects Lee to stay, in part because David’s girlfriend is developing her career from the City.

Others are reporting that Lee is being sized up for a sign and trade which only points out the myriad of choices the Knicks have to make. I would not be surprised if Lee is gone and Nate is still around.  Despite D’Antoni’s obvious exasperation with Nate, the guard corp is more important to D’Antoni than an defenseless, undersized  power forward.  Plus  it is probably cheaper to keep Nate and deal Lee for a piece or two after a hefty signing.  We’ll see.  Just be patient, right?

One thing that trips me out though is this insistence that what Donnie Walsh is doing and has done is reflective of his lauded “patience.” A couple of the Knicks Beats have picked up on this theme proffered by Cablevision which owns Newsday and the alt-del buttons on all the newsroom computers.  Dee writes the following about Walsh’s consideration of David Lee, “We know Walsh is a patient man and there is no decision that gets made without incredible detail and you can bet that he will test the sign and trade waters before committing.” Such characterizations crack me up, first especially since only an idiot would not consider the sign and trade options for both Nate and Lee; second, Walsh’s first season was such a poor-to-mediocre year for Knicks management that “patience” is more accurate for press coverage of the team’s poor performance.


I came up on another spot that was highlighting hilarious spoofs of the LeBron-Kobe Muppet show.  Check them out.  Warning, the language is a little sailor salty.


I don’t know how I got there, but in Chris Columbus tradition, I stumbled onto Sports Illustrated’s Hot Clicks written by Jimmy Triani and it had me dying laughing.  I’ll try my best not to steal all the gold from his site for this post, but it’s kind of hard not to pay much respect to a site that leads from Hot Clicks to Hot Chicks.  You’ll understand better later in this post.

Anyway, he referenced this  YouTube video that I thought was pretty funny on several levels.  This is a Tman post in pictures:

Speaking of hot clicks, we also picked up a few more gems for our link chain.  We added the following links to the sidebars.   If you get bored at work, check them out:  Ballhype, Black Sports On Line, KnicksFanBlog, Life of A Knicks Fan. We also added a couple of good sites focused on our NBA rivals: Orlando Magic Blog, Third Quarter Collapse (another Magic Blog), Blaze of Love (Portland Trailblazers) and Bust A Bucket.

I knew  I was at the tail end of my travels when I ran  into Sexy Chicks That Tweet.   Twiddle dee, Twitter dumb.  And I just thought that Tweeting was another way of connecting with like-minded Knicks fans.  Never have 140 words looked so good.

In the face of  such inspiration, Chickipedia writes “Twitter’s an amazing, and particuarly proletarian, technological phenomenon because it puts dweebs and gorgeous models on the same dialog chains, creating amazing cultural opportunities based on two of our most valued social touchstones: inanity and self-absorption.”

Well, based on my fitty-plus (counting the days) years of experience.  Some people “tweet” and others “do.”  Hats off to Jamie Foxx, a dude who does do.   His ample lips got swolled (as did other body parts) when he landed a french-lick kiss from  hot chick Halle Berry who was at the Spike Awards receiving the Spike TV’s Guys’ Choice Decade of Hotness Award.  You go boy.

Halle and Jamie

Man. Fitty and some days.  What a journey.


June 11, 2009 - Posted by | David Lee, Donnie Walsh, Kobe Bryant, Lebron James., Mike D'Antoni, Nate Robinson, New York Knicks, Stephon Marbury | , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Happy Birthday brother!Smack that ass!It won’t be any different today than it was yesterday.He’ll take you when He (or She) wants you!Carry on!T.

    Comment by livesinAweofourCreator | June 11, 2009 | Reply

  2. Thanks TBrother.

    ESPN’s Hollinger ranks all-time franchises and places the Knicks at 16th in group of 30.

    Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 11, 2009 | Reply

  3. Steve Nash tells David Letterman he would love to play for the Knicks

    Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 11, 2009 | Reply

  4. Happy Birthday Lives

    You don’t look a day over 100! LOL!

    I’ll set up an LBE for game 5 on Sunday.

    Man I think Bridzilla Needs a nemisis? “Bro Dan” anyone?

    Comment by orangeandblue1 | June 11, 2009 | Reply

  5. Happy Birthday Lives!
    It’s halftime of Game four Magic vs Lakers.
    When..and we will, watch our beloved Knicks

    Comment by Peaceman | June 11, 2009 | Reply

  6. Pow! Pow! Pau!

    Give Peace A Chance.

    Thanks Brotherman.

    Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 12, 2009 | Reply

  7. Refs crippled the Lakers D by sitting their bigs with fouls.Jackson then saves his fouls for 2nd half, smart.Defense once again brings Lakers back and wins another game.If anyone besides Pietrus and Dmight played D, Disneyland might be Tomorrowland instead of Fantasyland.All hale Phil,for knowing what to do with the pill!
    PS. If D’Annutty had a player like D-mighty-Mouse,his shoot first, second, third, etc. approach might make some kind of sense.We’ve got David, His Arms Are Too Short To Block Shots For G-d, Lee.It’s not personal, Dave is a good utility player, but we need to get bigger and better in the middle, or learn to play Defense!Thabeet is the logical pick, he’s the tallest!
    PS, Not playing Rafer was a mistake.Understandable to a point because of his loyalty to his once and future guard, but still a mistake.He may never admit it, but he’ll lose plenty of sleep over it.It may cost him his job eventually.

    Comment by Tman | June 12, 2009 | Reply

  8. Oh yeah, Done-D-Done-Done!I just like that line!

    Comment by Tman | June 12, 2009 | Reply

  9. “Nineteen turnovers to 8,” said Van Gundy in detailing the negative differences between his team and the Lakers. “Free-throw shooting and poor execution down the stretch.”

    Who’s team does this sound like?

    Comment by Tman | June 12, 2009 | Reply

  10. Jennings impressive at Warriors workout. The Knicksblog

    Here’s a snippet from Jennings Q&A.

    “… Are you ready to run an NBA team? Will that take some time?

    -JENNINGS: No, I don’t think it’ll take any time. I have a year under my belt playing professional basketball. So I know what a team needs. And I know the type of situations that a team gets into.

    -Q: What are you trying to show?

    -JENNINGS: That I can run a team. That I’m a pure point guard. You know, everybody thinks I’m a shoot-first point guard. But I’m really just a pure pass-first point guard.

    -Q: You think you fit next to Monta Ellis?

    JENNINGS: Oh, heck yeah. Monta, he fits my game. He runs and I run. Put us two together, you might have greatness.

    It’d be kind of scary for the opponent, because we’d just get after it. Then you’d have to try to guard both of us coming back down.

    -Q: Did you guard any bigger guys when you were in Italy?

    -JENNINGS: Yes, a little bit. At practice all the time. The three-man is about 6-5, 6-6, so those are the types of guys I had to go against sometimes.

    -Q: How hard was it to guard Flynn today?

    -JENNINGS: Challenging. It was a real challenge. But I held my own. I think I did pretty good today.

    -Q: How much did you learn by going to Italy?

    -JENNINGS: I had to mature real fast because, as you know, I was with grown men every day. So I had to take care of my responsibilities. It was a challenge at first. It was ups and downs. But I did what I had to do.

    -Q: Feel it was the correct decision?

    -JENNINGS: Oh yes, the experience was great on and off the court. I learned a lot about life. We don’t know how good we have it until you get out of your comfort zone and go to another place. The experience was great. I wouldn’t change it for anything.

    Just playing with grown men every day. Fighting for my job. It’s a job now, so everybody wants to eat. It was the right decision.

    -Q: Are you a better player now?

    -JENNINGS: I’m more mature than I think the other guys because of the year that I had in Europe. Not even playing, going through that, ups and downs… I think have the upper hand on some of these guys…”

    Comment by igmknicks | June 12, 2009 | Reply

  11. Wizard workouts and interviews includes Lawson and Derozan.

    Comment by igmknicks | June 12, 2009 | Reply

  12. In video, Brandon Jennings says that Rubio is all “hype” and that he would not fare as well as some may think in a workout group of him, Flynn, Curry and Holliday.

    Comment by igmknicks | June 12, 2009 | Reply

  13. Curry reportedly cancels all workouts except for Wizards with 5 spot.

    Comment by igmknicks | June 13, 2009 | Reply

  14. Wait … will Madison Square Garden actually be filled with cheers on Draft Night? Newsday (via Canis Hoopus) reports Stephen Curry has canceled all but one workout after a splendid visit with the Knicks. New York picks No. 8 in the June 25 draft. The cancellations include … Minnesota, who picks No. 6. Gulp!

    Curry obviously has confidence he will not fall below the Knicks, and he obviously would rather Minnesota keep its grubby paws off him. The kid did keep his date with the Wizards (who pick No. 5), presumably because he thinks it’d be swell to be in playoff contention next year. Minnesota had planned to work out Curry with three point guard prospects who came together in Sacramento Friday afternoon: Jrue Holiday, Jonny Flynn and Brandon Jennings. Jennings used the workout as an opportunity to tell the world that Ricky Rubio is “all hype.” (You must watch that video.)

    Comment by igmknicks | June 13, 2009 | Reply

  15. Statesman, it would appear that BJ’s stock is rising as he shows the temerity to call out Rubio and is reportedly doing well in his workouts against the other points. Still his shot sucks and he even expressed surprise that he shot so well in the Wizard workout. I like that admission though. That is confidence and shows that he is hungry to get better.

    Also, I believe USA Today had an article about your earlier point that many of the players in the Championship Finals did not hail from college. AS I recall your observation was supposed to support a generalized view of the value of experience — the article did not go that far, but it still made the observation that One year in college and done, may be done in the next collective bargaining agreement.

    Comment by igmknicks | June 13, 2009 | Reply

  16. Courtesy of Knicks Fan Blog

    Comment by igmknicks | June 13, 2009 | Reply

  17. IGM,

    You’re starting to sound more and more like MSM. When the MSM was riding Rubio, you were riding Rubio. When the MSM was riding Lawson, you were riding Lawson. Just as the MSM has jumped off their bandwagons so have you. The MSM is showing Brandon Jennings love, and now in a reluctant manner, so are you. You appear to give credibility to the MSM when they state that experience in the draft is insignificant, but you challenged me when I stated that earlier. IGM, my bro, I can only say “THE ICE IS NOT COLDER”.

    Peaceman, the last guy to root for a Curry has not shown his ink in some time. If you live by Curry (Eddy or Steph), you will die by Curry.

    Welcome aboard. The Fanatics are very open-minded when you agree with them.

    ‘Lives’, 50 is middle-aged for bros from the South-Side of Chicago. Hey middle-age is 34 on the South-Side. What’s your secret?

    There are some sleepers in the draft. Let’s hope Walsh and IGM have their good-luck charms.

    Peace & Blessings

    Comment by statesman2 | June 13, 2009 | Reply

    • Statesman,

      I would be willing to die by S Curry!
      Just talked to OUR insider, his Dad just
      past away. He has no “in’s” to get a good draft
      seat, however, according to him, S Curry is the Knicks
      sole plan A-B-C-D. In S. Curry, we will have a “Mark
      Price” type with a Bernard King all around Game.
      He will be our Batman! Next up, a Center to call his Robin!

      Comment by Peaceman | June 14, 2009 | Reply

  18. You’re a funny guy Statesman.

    I do believe the only opinion I offered in the recent posts was that I liked BJ’s admission that he was surprised that he shot well in a workout.

    I do think your post was premature gesticulation. I simply was attempting to keep you guys abreast of what was being said about Jennings despite my view. I am not wedded to a position only to providing Fanatics with as much info as possible so that they are informed on June 25th and thereafter. In fact, I thought my posts favored your earlier arguments in favor of Jennings.

    Still, the reports of the so-called “MSM” are certainly more current that what I provided earlier and seem to be first hand information. Based on that alone perhaps I would come closer to your position if I relied on it as I would a scout. Perhaps. But for now, I remain torn because he is very skilled, but he talks too much shyte and his shooting is not great.

    I do reserve the right to change my mind for whatever reason new information may give me, but thanks for the observation. I’ll keep it under consideration.

    Comment by igmknicks | June 13, 2009 | Reply

  19. Happy Birthday Lives

    Congratulations on achieving the half-century mark.
    This blog keeps improving as you age every day. Look forward to reading it every day. Perhaps the Knicks will attain another championship before you reach 100.

    Comment by Post-up Prince | June 13, 2009 | Reply

  20. Thanks States and Prince Post-Up.

    Man, Prince, thanks for the bloghype, but the truth is, as it has always been, the heart of the blog is the community that builds it. It gets better because you guys get better and I’m more than happy to put stuff out there to get our juices flowing.

    In other words, thanks for being there and hanging out with us through thick and thin and more thick. More thick would be Statesman. LOL.

    States, the secret is so secret that I don’t even know it.
    It could be genetics; or that I moved to the East Coast 32 years ago; or that I don’t take that shyte too seriously (lower stress); or that I don’t wear panties, so they can’t get in a bunch or that I don’t eat red meat unless I’m hungry. Whatever it is, this is another good morning.

    O&B are you doing a LBE tonight at 8:00. It will probably be the last one of the season. Holla back.

    Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 14, 2009 | Reply

    • Lives ..your baiting me, however, there
      will be three more shots at LBE, With
      the Magic becoming the Champs! Laker
      meltdown starts tonight!

      Predicted Score tonight~Magic 104 Lakers 86~

      Comment by Peaceman | June 14, 2009 | Reply

      • Yes I am baiting you, but quite frankly I am rooting for the Magic to win this game. I am not ready for the season to end yet. Still, my expectations are not high. Coach Van Gundy is killing you.

        Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 14, 2009

  21. Lives

    I’m heading back up to North Jersey from some place in the Sticks of Virginia. Was there to see an old buddy get married.

    Let me see if after some pre return site seeing, I can make it back up to Jersey in time to conduct this supposed “last” LBE.

    Think the Magic will win this one to save face to their fans. Plus winning one @ home gets them closer to believing they can even out the series with just one win in LA.

    I’m not saying… I’m just saying!

    I’ll call you when I’m back. Don’t have my regular puter to set it up. Will have to do so when I get back in.

    Comment by orangeandblue1 | June 14, 2009 | Reply

    • O.K., I’ll look to hear from you.

      Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 14, 2009 | Reply

      • Just got back in from the Va. sticks.

        Is it to late to do a last minute LBE for tonight?

        We can do the Summer League 1st and last game with a preview of our summer league rookie. And a post summer league synopsis of our observations of the games in NV.

        Comment by orangeandblue1 | June 14, 2009

  22. You can set up the LBE or use this thread, like in the old days to close it out.

    Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 14, 2009 | Reply

  23. Instead of a dagger, Ariza throws a wayward dart.

    Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 14, 2009 | Reply

  24. Magic: Awestruck and Panic stricken.

    Comment by livesinnewjersey | June 14, 2009 | Reply

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