Tag Archives: Sports

Putting Things in Perspective

University of Virginia Men’s Basketball
2019 Champions

I’ve lived in Virginia for most my younger children’s lives. My older son and his family live in Virginian. My daughter-in-law’s family lives in Virginia. My younger children are fortunate enough to receive their college educations at prestigious Virginia Universities. I love Virginia History from Sir Walter Raleigh, the Powhatan people, Washington, Lee, Jefferson, and NASA mathematician, Kathrine Johnson.

I love that Jefferson attended the College of William and Mary but had his tombstone celebrate:

Author of the Declaration of American Independence
of the Statute of Virginia for religious freedom
& Father of the University of Virginia

I consider myself a Virginian.

However, when TV sports experts announced that the recent UVA basketball championship “Will be remembered forever!” I saw a bit of exaggeration. With Americans, we’re talking about people who can’t tell you Virginia’s role in slave trading or why Washington, DC is half its planned size because they returned Virginia’s donation of land.

But they will remember the 2019 Basketball Championship?


Imaginary – Relaxing Weekends Are


Courtesy George Lucas, LucasFilms, Disney, Frank Oz, etc.

Courtesy George Lucas, LucasFilms, Disney, Frank Oz, etc.

I remember once believing that weekends were a time to relax, unwind and recover from the work week.  I’m convinced that such an impression was induced by side effects of one of the many medications I’ve been on over the years.

So I began to think back on my younger years –

In high school, weekends were spent working on Saturday, staying up w-a-a-y too late on Saturday, and hanging out with friends on Sunday.

As a young adult, after working all week at the hospital, I’d spend Saturday shooting wedding pictures and Sunday taking call at the hospital.

For most of 30 years, one weekend a month was spent on Navy Reserve duty.

My eldest was born in 1975. My youngest children are teenagers. Needless to say, that affects weekends significantly.

With my teenagers, it was a soccer weekend. (All soccer! All the time!)

I’ve finally come to the realization that relaxing weekends are like Hogwarts, Vulcan Mind-Melds and Jedi Masters. They are great images, but don’t really exist.




Our daughter, not yet 13, is taking her first semi-solo trip. She’ll be traveling with a group from her soccer club to Denver for the national soccer camp.

We are not dealing with a scared, frantic child.

Mom, on the other hand, is a different story.

There’s something unsettling about having a child take one of those big steps.

What if…?

What if…?

The packing is done. We plan on being at the airport at 5:00 AM (at least traffic will be light on the way there, not so much on the way home).

Now, all we have to deal with is reality. Our children are growing up.

Lance Armstrong

The Lance Armstrong confession has resulted in some interesting reactions, “The New York Times” had perhaps the funniest:

“…Armstrong did indeed admit he used performance-enhancing drugs. (In other news: the world is round.)”

But among the more interesting responses have been those who are now questioning the wisdom of placing athletes or other celebrities in the role of “heroes” and therefore role models.

Do we really want our kids emulating someone whose claim to fame is his ability to ride a bike or chase a ball? Do we want our kids to think that it’s normal to be incredibly wealthy, have a throng of hangers-on, be treated “special” by the courts and then be finished with your career in your thirties?

Vince Lombardi is known for saying, “Winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing!” Actually, he “borrowed” that phrase from UCLA Bruins football coach Henry Russell (“Red”) Sanders. I guess that alone is enough to prove that some people will beg, borrow, steal, or inject in order to win.

I’d rather my kids see heroes as the people who go to work every day, not for fame and fortune but because it’s the right thing to do. Parents who attend the school concert, the sporting event and who help (to the degree they can) with the school projects. People who give God his due. People who repeatedly fall madly in love with their spouse.

Celebrities live in a different world – make that a different universe – from the rest of us. They have their place. We enjoy them because they make us laugh, they make us cry. They make us cheer. They make us wish they could have heard the advice we shouted to the television before they messed up that last play. (Auugghhhh! Fumble!)

Most of our kids will never live in the celebrities universe, and even if they do, sooner or later (probably sooner) they’ll re-enter the normal universe, and hopefully find themselves willing to go to work every day, be attentive to their kids, know God, and appreciate their spouse.

Murphy’s Law and Other Thoughts

The kids normally have their soccer games on Sunday, which can be a schedule juggle for a number of reasons. Church is one. Having a full day of driving cheering, etc. before diving back into the work scene is another. So you’d think I’d prefer Saturday.

Not necessarily.

Both kids had games in Richmond – about a two hour drive. The games were at the same time. Convenient, huh? Wrong.

They were about an hour’s drive apart from one another.

If you don’t have kids in soccer, this may require some explaining. Soccer complexes don’t have a convenient place to kill an hour, except in your car. Most don’t have indoor plumbing, much less concessions, etc. Therefore the only logical alternative was to drive two cars halfway across the state in the same direction at the same time.

To add insult to injury, to get to the games on time we had to get up about 6:30 – not exactly weekend hours.

But the kids had fun.

An I guess that’s what it’s all about.