Good Friday afternoon: a three-hour shutdown in my row house
Contemporary issues - I try to float above the fray of sporting contests where scores are kept and athletes are allotted precious playing time. I am just there to capture the essence of what competition is all about, to admire the athletes who hopefully get lost in the moment and are not too hung up on outcomes. But I don’t do such a great job going on disconnect. And when it involves my own blood, I must do the unnatural and keep my mouth shut. I am not a blabber, but I do have my own column in which I share just about everything that happens to me, because it's comforting for others to know that I am treated no differently than they are, and if they think otherwise they are mistaken.
Row house rowdies - On Good Friday of my youth in a row house North Philly neighborhood of young Catholic families, we were all on bedroom shutdown and shut-up mode from 12 to 3, but when the cuckoo clock croaked 3 o'clock, it was into the street for stickball, curb ball, wire ball, pimple ball, baby-in-the-air and buck-buck. Trolley cars and yellow cabs, brown bottles of beer and fat women churning up vats of potato salad. I was two blocks from Connie Mack Stadium; the smell of boiled hot dogs wafted along the spring breeze. Here we have the kite festival, which is nice if you like to see grown men flying inflated farm animals.
Das Boot - I hear lots of stories; some of them are mostly true but many people hold back the parts that pain the most. I tell people, “We all have ballast we’d like to throw from the boat but often we can’t; we just have to keep rowing.” I’ve been reading about the life of Jackie Robinson, which was interwoven with greatness and sadness. His older brother Mack won a silver medal in the 200 meters behind Jesse Owens in the 1936 Olympics. He had national junior college records in the 100 and 200 meters and long jump. Mack lived to be 85; his better-known younger brother Jackie died at 53 from complications of diabetes. Jackie’s oldest son, Jackie Jr., served in Vietnam, later developed an addiction to heroin and died in a car accident at the age of 25. The life of Jackie Robinson, I feel, was not portrayed in the movie with the right balance of accomplishment and anguish, which is the way most of us go through it.
Snippets - Kaci Coveleski was selected the Northeastern University Student Athlete of the Year for Field Hockey 2013-14 by the Student-Athlete Support Services. Kaci is a red-shirt junior.
The Cape baseball team is playing in Hawaii as we speak, and I could have gone with them, but somehow sitting on the beach and hiking just didn’t do it for me. My idea of a good time is sitting on a stoop talking to people.
The Slaughter Neck basketball league adult and youth division is back in action; contact Haywood Burton for information. I’d type his name in a Facebook window and see what happens.
The younger girls' teams of Atlantic Lacrosse were treated to an Easter Egg Hunt April 15 at Champions Stadium that also involved a long toss competition and shooting on the varsity goalies. Four of the girls who won some contests that day will be introduced and get to sit on the bench during a varsity home game. A special recognition is always given to the player who finds the Golden Egg. This year's winner was Tatum C. Friend, whose dad, Steve, went to Cape.
I’ve been watching the Phillies on the computer at MLB.com in icon animation. I don’t need announcers to fill in the gaps of a 1-0 shutout home loss to the Braves. And I don’t understand how come so many locals are Braves fans, but I know it has something to do with Chipper Jones.
Local athletes Emory Howell and William Coursey will be inducted into the Delaware Afro-American Sports Hall of Fame Saturday, April 18, at the Modern Maturity Center in Dover. One hundred and seventy members have been inducted since the first class in 1999. Tom Hickman will be inducted into the Delaware Sports Hall of Fame Thursday, May 15, at the Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington. Tickets are $60 and can be obtained from Sue Holloway at 302-992-0550 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline for tickets is Wednesday, May 7. We of the Hickman era need to purchase a table pronto. Connected friends need to hit me up via the usual channels.
Go on now, git!