Reaching for the shooting stars in Seaside Delaware

No big-timers in a small state
May 15, 2020

Reaching for the Stars - I have never done Formula One sportswriting and I’m fortunate that I  never worked for a mainstream newspaper or national publication. The more celebrated the player, the less likely I’ll end up talking to him or her, because like a Midnight Cowboy, “Everybody’s talkin’ at them, but they don’t hear a word you’re saying.” I never interviewed celebrated Delaware athletes Elena Delle Donne, Joe Flacco or Donte DiVincenzo. I’d gladly talk to them if they requested an interview – “I really want to talk to that Fredman guy” – but I’m not chasing them like some cub reporter trying to make his bones. Many of us remember when Michael Jordan showed up on the deck at the Rusty Rudder (2002), with a protective entourage holding out their arms like Diana Ross, “Stop in the name of Cuz” and “No pictures!” But Marc Clery got him because that’s what Muppet Marc does. I did get a photo last summer of Associate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh running the Dewey Beach Patrol 5K in 24:27. I’d have gladly sent him the photo, but he didn’t ask and I wasn’t chasing him – he was too busy chasing and finishing ahead of Ginger Shaud by four seconds. 

Shapeshifters - I think like most aging people, I’ve been an out-of-shape shifter bounding down the beach having a ball. Don’t even try chasing me if a land breeze blows me into the ocean. I am pleasantly astounded by all the local young athletes I’ve known since they were children who knocked down college degrees using sports as a means to that end or perhaps going straight as a student – it doesn’t matter. Sara Young, Cape class of 2013 with six state titles to her credit, is graduating this week from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in political communications. Sara is way too smart to communicate professionally on social media with her Ivy League pedigree. A side note: Sara and my granddaughter Anna have been fast friends since childhood. Jack Ashby was named Male Athlete of the Year for men’s soccer at the University of Lynchburg. Anna Stancofski stepped off Johns Hopkins after being awarded a McCabe Scholarship to Swarthmore College. Anna received the DIAA Academic Award along with Lily Suh of Charter prior to their 2019 state tournament field hockey game. Suh will be attending the University of Pennsylvania. Aubrey Inkster, son of Cape teacher Esther Kernosh, has been accepted into a master’s program at the University of Delaware to study microbiology.  

Puppies of the pandemic - It is ironic that if you pen people up they go out and get a puppy dog. This has been a social phenomenon that no one saw coming. There are the rescue people versus the “I get what I want, it's my dog” people. Most new puppy owners will go back to work or school by the time the puppy is a rammy juvenile, and some people will be trading them in or, as the euphemism goes, “rehoming them.” I’ll wait for a rescued rebounder from the rehome puppy pile named Homer and join him on his odyssey over land and sea and Wawa donuts. 

Exercise side to side - The up-and-down on the Boardwalk exercise onslaught this weekend is going to be muy interesante. Older runners like running in straight lines, and many lack the agility to simply get out of the way. I’d go down and just watch, except there are no benches and no blue chairs allowed, just everybody moving. Throw in the puppies of the pandemic on leashes for a high-stakes circus with the invisible spiked balls of corona wafting through the ocean breeze and sneeze. It sounds like a medical highway to the danger zone, except there are no road signs.    

Snippets - I gave the graduation speech at the SCI boot camp program several years ago. Dan Cook got inside to take photos, and the text of the speech was published in the Cape Gazette. Bryan Stevenson (I was his high school track coach) is giving the graduation speech at Harvard Law School. Bryan has been awarded 40 honorary doctorate degrees. I have none, not even one from prison. Funny where lives intersect before careening off in different directions. I’d love someday to have a sit-down with Bryan for a “remember, neither of us is nobody” chat of reminiscences – write your own joke. I think we both would benefit. Mo’ne Davis, pitcher of Little League fame out of Philly, was a freshman softball player this spring at Hampton University. The Stripers are biting, but the restaurant ain’t open. Darby Dog and I went to the new and improved boat launching ramps north on Pilottown Road, which is not nearly as much fun as watching multiple mishaps at the old boat ramp. Backing a boat down a steep ramp into canal crud had instant stupid written all over it. We local boys observed the Star Wars Doctrine of Non-Interference as our guide; we didn’t want to change the course of the future by altering history in the present. I did intervene once when a trailer winch broke and a cable wrapped around a woman's chest as a Grady-White was dragging her to the land of oyster crackers. Go on now, git!      

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