Posted tagged ‘sports’


January 22, 2015

deflatedI am a football fan.  I am often a reluctant football fan for a variety of reasons.  As much as I enjoy the games, I dislike the degree of importance we give them and the way we idolize athletes because they can throw or catch a ball … or knock another man to the ground.  While I don’t idolize the players, I do enjoy watching the sometimes amazing athletic feats the games bring into our family room.   But I have to say I’d enjoy them a lot more if I didn’t have to listen to the constant chatter of announcers explaining every play as if it were rocket science.   That’s probably because I don’t have something they call football intelligence.  Then there’s sports-talk, twenty-four hours a day, the place I go for information on the teams I follow and the games I’ve missed.  Unfortunately, the media, aiming for a younger demographic than Older Eyes favors smack-talking announcers and ex-jocks who’d rather create artificial sports controversies and offer sophomoric social commentary than actual report on sports. (more…)

Monday Smiles – 12/1/2014

December 1, 2014

image This has been a Thanksgiving week for the grandkids, almost to the exclusion of everything else, but Saturday, I took the afternoon off to watch my USC Trojans play Notre Dame with my son-in-law, Lars, at their house.  Oh, the kids were around but there are a million kids in the neighborhood, so the grandsons were content to play outside.  Savannah drifted in and out, insisting on a game or two of Old Maid.  There are only three people that could get me to play Old Maid during a USC football game but Savy is one of them.  This has been a disappointing year.  We (the spectator we) lost several games in the final seconds and worse, we were beaten soundly by the basketball school across town last weekend, a loss that made it likely that they would play in the Pac-12 championship game.   Still, in spite of the delusions of most UCLA fans, our biggest rivalry is Notre Dame, a game that Forbes Magazine, no less, calls college football’s greatest because of the long time excellence of both programs.  The game started well, with USC going up 35-0 before Notre Dame’s second string quaterback led them on a touchdown drive to end the firat half.   Given, the Trojan’s penchant for second half collapses this year, I was happy but anything but confident.  But the second half went much like the first, the game ending with a 49-14 score.   Yay!

Peeves. Large and Small.

October 15, 2014

curmudgeonYou may have noticed that someone’s been missing here from Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog for a while.  That would be my cranky alter-ego, my Inner Curmudgeon.   But he’s back with some pet peeves, from small ones like internet ads and Facebook to big ones like the current over-reaction to Africa’s Ebola outbreak in the U.S.

1.  Internet video ads that play automatically when I navigate to a page: I understand that advertising drives the internet these days, but as a music lover who sometimes leaves his speakers on LOUD, I’ve been practically knocked out of my chair by some loudmouthed bozo selling some product or other.  I assure you, my response has never been, Oh, I think I’ll buy one of those.

Not About the Game

September 18, 2014

not FBI am a sports fan and I probably will be until the day I die but there are times I wonder why.  Sometimes, I wonder why I care about whether spoiled soon-to-be-millionaire college athletes win or lose just because they wear the name of the university where I got my graduate degree on their shirts.   I watch unsportsmanlike behavior on the field and unseemly behavior off the field by young men who have been treated like stars since junior high.   I see boorish behavior in the stands by fans and over-the-top taunting of opponents on internet message boards and sports websites. I listen to sports talk bozos who sound like overgrown adolescents with opinions to match.  I wonder, Do I really want to be associated with these people?  I get to see men who are making millions for playing a freaking game sound and act like hoodlums on and off the field and wonder, Why do we deify these people? (more…)

Monday Smiles – 9/8/2014

September 8, 2014

solanaSometimes, there is absolutely nothing like a day or two away.   It’s not that we don’t love our home … or that there is anything particularly odious to get away from.   Our life is good.   But home is home and there are always chores whispering in the hallways, asking to be done.  And others calling from the yard.   When you are self-employed … at home … work is always just down the hall, too, singing its siren’s song … Bill some hours, bill some hours.  So Saturday, we headed south on the 5 Freeway, along the Pacific coast to the little town of Solana Beach, where one of our oldest friends, Jackie, lives.  If you need proof that Jackie is a dear friend, all you need to know is that we left during the first quarter of the USC-Stanford Football game.  Fortunately, when we arrived at Jackie’s house, I got to watch most of the second half and even more fortunately, the Trojans won the game, 13-10.   I hate to admit this, but I’m a lot more fun to be around when USC wins. (more…)

Words and Sports

July 10, 2014

sportsIf you’ve been around here a few times, you know that I am a sports fan, often a passionate one when it comes to my teams.  Sometimes I step back from myself (not an easy feat) and am a little embarrassed about just how a victory can make my day … or a defeat can ruin it.  I am, some report, an intelligent man and they are, after all, only games.  My favorite sports are basketball and football, a domain in which I have definite favorites (USC Trojans. Lakers. UConn Huskies), but when the playoffs roll around, I’ve been known to imbibe a bit of hockey or baseball.  I am also a soccer fan and for the last two weeks I have been overdosing on World Cup soccer.  The games have, for the most part, been excellent (except for that Germany-Brazil debacle) and I can tell you, after watching the Brasilian soccer fans, I am no longer embarrassed, even slightly, by my own fandom. (more…)


June 28, 2014

futballWhen I was 30 years old (shortly after the extinction of the dinosaurs), I knew nothing about soccer.   Oh, I probably knew vaguely how it was played and I’m sure I’d noticed kid’s teams playing on the school fields on weekends, kicking and squealing in their colorful uniforms.  I probably knew of the World Cup but I can assure you, I had never watched a soccer game, on TV or in person.  When I was 35, we decided to enroll our son, Aaron, in the local youth soccer league.  I think that happened because his friend’s Mom was going to coach a team and wanted to know if Aaron would play.  She also asked if I would help her coach.  She actually played soccer, so I said, Yes, figuring I could learn as I go.   There wasn’t much to learn that year … Instructional League wasn’t known as beehive ball for nothing.  If you could teach one or two kids the idea of passing instead of ball-chasing, you’d had a good year.   Aaron took to the game like a natural, not so much because of superior coaching but because he emulated Steve, another player on his team who had older brothers and was very good.  Aaron was hooked.  So was his Dad.  Him on playing, me on coaching … and later, the game itself. (more…)

Me and LeBron

June 7, 2014

marathonI ran my first marathon in 1983. I had been running regularly for several years and had recently hooked up with a lunchtime running group of five or six runners of which I was easily the slowest. We ran a standard course of about 7 miles and someone would always push the pace at the end. I began to get faster and my weekend runs got longer. One of the noontime runners, Fred, asked me if I wanted to run the Long Beach Marathon with him. We began to increase the length of our weekend runs and when I was logging over twenty miles on my Saturday run, I sent in my entrance fee. The Long Beach Marathon was known as a good beginners marathon, a primarily flat course that ran largely along the coast in March which usually meant cool weather. The plan was for Fred to run by my side to keep me moving at a reasonable pace and keep me out of trouble. The best-laid plan failed when he got sick at about the seven mile mark and told me to go ahead. It was a beautiful, cool spring day and I got into the spirit of the middle-of-the-packers, talking to other runners and visiting with spectators out to cheer us on.   At 22 miles, I was right on pace for a three and a half hour marathon. (more…)

Closet Bigots

May 24, 2014

cubanIf you’ve been coming by Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog for a while you know that not only do I enjoy sports, I enjoy participating in some of the discussions of social issues that American sports’ larger than life persona stimulates.   Certainly, the statements of Donald Sterling to his so-called assistant have ignited a firestorm of discussion aboutsterling racism … and bigotry in general … in our society.  Yesterday, owner of the NBA Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban, commented on the situation in an interview with Inc Magazine.  Here’s what he said, in part: I mean, we’re all prejudiced in one way or another. If I see a black kid in a hoodie and it’s late at night, I’m walking to the other side of the street. And if on that side of the street, there’s a guy that has tattoos all over his face — white guy, bald head, tattoos everywhere — I’m walking back to the other side of the street. And the list goes on of stereotypes that we all live up to and are fearful of. So in my businesses, I try not to be hypocritical. I know that I’m not perfect. I know that I live in a glass house, and it’s not appropriate for me to throw stones. (more…)

Deja Vu Two

May 3, 2014

soccer1About thirty years ago, I was coaching my son, Aaron’s, soccer team.  He was about ten.  We decided it would be a good idea to have a parent – child game just for the fun of it.  I was waiting for someone to pass me the ball when I felt a sharp pain in the back of my calf.  After years of filching golf balls and caddying at the public golf course near my parent’s house, I immediately thought someone had hit me with a golf ball but when I turned to see, there was no one there.  I sat out the rest of the game and had to have several of the other Dads help me to my car afterwards.  That night, I couldn’t walk … I went out to the theater with Muri on crutches. (more…)