Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A Bullet In the Hip is Worth a Soap on the Rope

Former Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress surrendered to federal authorities and was sentenced to 2 years in Riker's Island for weapons charges stemming from a shooting incident in a New York nightclub in which Burress shot himself in the leg with a .40 caliber semi-automatic weapon that he was carrying in the waistband of his sweatpants. With good behavior Burress' sentence will likely be reduced to 20-months. Burress was also sentenced to 2 years of post release supervision.

In honor of Plaxico's sure to be unforgettable stay in prison, here are some tips and tricks to help Mr. Burress come out with everything that he goes in with.

1.Stay in an area where there's a lot of people watching you; where the guards are watching you. This shouldn't be a problem for Plax. He's certainly accustomed to seeking and being the center of attention. Just think of the guards as your offensive line -- without the tacit bonds of comradery fomented by huge contracts and mandatory mini-camps of course.

2.Do not become confrontational with anyone. Respect people; be polite. If you taunt the officials in jail you don't get fined, you get tasered. If you talk smack to the other team you don't get suspended, you get shanked.

3.Don't borrow anything from anyone. Don't become beholden to anyone. You can always file for bankruptcy if you spend more than you make in the altered reality inhabited by a NFL star. In jail, you'll probably end up selling your assets and I don't mean mutual funds, cars, or your iced out watch from Jacob the Jeweler. Just to clarify, I'm talking about your butt.

4.Secure the soap. You've never had a problem holding on to the rock. Now is probably not the most opportune time to catch a case of the fumbles.

5.Consider a position change. I have a feeling that being a Pro Bowl wide receiver may have a different connotation at Rikers.

6.Don't discuss your crime. This rule usually applies to people convicted of taboo crimes such as rape and child molestation but to cold-blooded murders and robbers adept at using instruments of death and destruction effectively, you might not want to tell them that you're in the slammer for shooting yourself in the leg. Oh wait, they have television in jail so they probably already know. Sorry Plax.

7.Don't stare at another prisoner. Always walk with your head facing forward. Mean mugging might be an effective form of intimidation on the gridiron but behind iron you might get killed, stuffed, and used as pigskin for a game of touch football on the yard.

8.Do not use drugs We know how much you love the sticky buds Plax but your days of puffing green have gone up in smoke. Drug use is a guaranteed road to trouble. You will become severely indebted if you become addicted and you run the risk of being caught by the guards. Drugs are readily accessible and while they may make your time seem less painful, they will almost certainly lead you into big trouble -- kind of like shooting yourself in the leg.

9.Work out. It helps you pass the time (which you will have a lot of), bulk up so that you're less of a target (which you will be), and gives you a leg up conditioning wise on all the other 34-year old free agent wide receiver ex-felons that you'll be competing with for a job in 20-months. Oh wait...

10.Do some deep thinking and reflection. You've already made the decision now try to figure out why you did it so that, at the very least, you don't shoot yourself in the same leg again. Not only would that really hurt your ego, you could potentially cause permanent nerve damage.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Daily Affirmations for Success

I'm a winner at life. Anything more is icing on the cake.

I am the only person that can stand in the way of my happiness today.

Everything I need to know I've already learned. I just need to remind myself.

I am beautiful on the inside and that is why I am beautiful outside.

Today will be an extraordinary day because I will make it so in an extraordinary way.

There are no such things as problems, only opportunities to improve the environment that I inhabit.

Real strength is standing by my fears, not hiding behind them.

It doesn't matter what anyone else calls me. The only thing that matters is what I call myself.

If I think it, I can do it. If I believe it, I can achieve it. If it is to be, it is up to me.

I can become a great thinker.

I can become a great friend.

I can become a great leader.

I can become a great lover.

I can become a self-sufficient person.

I can become because I already am.

All of the power embodied in the universe is embodied within me because I am a part of the universal consciousness. My potential is as unlimited as the universe is expansive.

When I look in the mirror I do not see the person that everyone calls by a specific name with a certain set of finite traits, values, and a relative worth. I see an eternal life force inhabiting a temporal vehicle with possibilities that are only limited by the scope of my vision.



Tuesday, September 8, 2009

You Worry About the Wrong Things

The lady at the Irving Park Rd. and Sheridan Ave. bus stop with the below average face, below below average weave, clothes like a dickhead, and abnormally large ass in proportion to her waist incessantly pokes and prods at her hair, carefully manicuring her bangs so that they fall pefectly across her knockoff Dolce and Gabana glasses.

The young school girl in her freshly pressed uniform blouse boarding the bus with her purse in one hand, Verizon Envy clamped secuely against her right ear. She's explaining to one of her parents that she has to go to a friend's house to babysit while the parent and another child go to "Disney on Ice". After a drawnout verbal exchange, the girl finally relents, falling back on that all too familiar teenage phrase -- "I'll just see you later at home. Bye!" Kids say the darndest things.

A middle aged lady sits across from me, exhausted from another long day at work. She oscillates in and out of consciousness, trying to grab a few moments of rest before she gets home. The lady grabs nervously at a gold crucifix hanging delicately around her freckled neck. I wonder if she's thinking what I'm thinking -- "if Jesus was a real as this chain around my neck he'd be looking out for me and my family."

The young store clerk at [store name redacted] that checks the status of all her Facebook friends as clueless customers meander around the store wondering whether their formal wear needs are worthy of the inconvenience they will cause by temporarily postponing the beautiful blondes social networking. The assistant looks on in between shuffles of his online Solitaire game. "Craig, can you grab this (my returned tux) and take it in back?" Craig eyes me disdainfully. I've just interrupted his recreation and replaced it with customer service. Customer service --a novel thought.

The old woman at the Irving Park Rd. and Kimball bus stop approaches the bus with cane in tote. The light blue of the cane matches the tint of the oxygen machine fastened securely across her slumping shoulders. The bus operator lowers the hydraulic lift on the bus to better accommodate the elderly potential passenger. "There's too many people on this bus! I'll wait!", she exclaims. It's rush hour. I board the bus and head straight to the back (because that's what curteous people do on crowded buses, right? Hardly). The automated PA announcer says in a sharp Anglophied male voice, "Priority seating is for the elderly and passengers with disabilities. Your cooperation is requested." Cooperation usually takes one or more persons working together. I wish that old lady had gotten on the bus. I guess she'll just have to wait 20 minutes for the next packed bus.

Two young ladies wearing black jeans and white t-shirts sitting in the rear of the bus talk in rapid Spanglish on their phones. They both have on crisp new black and white Chuck Taylors. It's almost their stop. One girl gets up and adjusts the back of her pants. No belt and no panties is usually not a good combination when your pants don't exactly fit -- more than likely on purpose. She checks her purse to make sure that she has everything since everything in her purse is priceless and irreplaceable. Thank God there are no textbooks obstructing her frantic search.

Everyone seems to be doing the same things -- fixing their hair, rubbing their noses, smoothing the puffiness under their eyes, readjusting their clothes, looking at what other people are wearing -- sneaking a peak at the technology that other people are talking into/listening to/reading from (Not really reading. No one reads anymore).

Everyone is worried about their appearance and that of others. I suppose that we all in some way, shape, or form cling to those things that we feel we have control over, no matter how insignificant they may be in actuality (notice that I didn't say reality).

I can almost hear Kanye West crooning about some model-type "worrying about the wrong things"....as he grabs his Jesus Piece and flashes his American Express Blackcard.

Ironic? Definitely.

Coincidental? Hardly.

Belichick -- The New Nostradamus?

I'm listening to ESPN Radio 1000 as I do mostly everyday at work and they just had a great "editorial promo" during one of the breaks. The subject was the New England Patriot's trade of linebacker Richard Seymour to the Oakland Raiders for a 2011 1st Round draft pick. What makes the trade so perculier is the fact that Seymour is only 29 years old and is coming off the best statistical season of his career.

Followers of sports, in particular NFL football, typically view Bill Belichick and the Patriots front office as being smarter than most. Therefore, if they're willing to make this trade, that must tell you that the Patriots know something about Seymour that the Raiders don't. It's similar to Billy Bean and the Oakland Athletics in baseball. If Billy is willing to part with a player, you'd be smart not to take the bait (Matt Holiday being the obvious exception. There's absolutely nothing wrong with Holiday if his robust numbers with the Cardinals are any indication. The Athletics weren't going to be able to re-sign him).

Belichick has a knack for picking young players that have the physical ability and character to buy into and thrive in his system, veterans that are so hungry for a championship that they are willing to sacrifice their individual ego for Belichickian group-think, and also the foresight to know when a player is on the downside of his career -- parting ways with them before they begin their inevitable desent down the backside of the Bell Curve.

Belichick is like Nostradamus in a sleeveless sweatshirt -- minus the apocryphal visions -- kind of.