Why It’s Wrong To Root Against Lebron James

Like many young boys coming of age in the ’40s and ’50s, my dad had an almost unhealthy affinity for Westerns and cowboy culture. Actually, “had” is the wrong word. “Shane” is still one of his favorite movies, and it’s not uncommon to drive up to my parent’s house and catch my dad in the middle of a “Gunsmoke” marathon.

And, also like many young boys infatuated with Westerns, my dad wanted to be a cowboy. Since there weren’t many 10 year old Black cowboys in the 1950s, he pretended as best as he could; rocking tassels and holsters with plastic guns in them whenever and wherever he could. (I think he even wore them to school)

Yet, if you hear my dad tell it, these memories produce an uneasy ambivalence. While he treasures the memories of walking up and down his block, pretending to be a cowboy, he feels a certain way about the fact that, by playing “Cowboys and Indians” — a game where the the kids in the neighborhood pretended to be cowboys chasing down and killing Indians — and by rooting against the Indians in many of the shows he watched, he was playing for the wrong team.

As a kid he didn’t realize this, but as he grew older and learned about some of the things that really happened in the Wild Wild West and to the American Indians, he grew horrified at the fact that American culture had villfied the Indians and that he happily took part in that vilification.

I imagine the people still reading are probably wondering how exactly I’m going to tie Lebron James into this story about my dad. A few may even already be upset at the thought that I’d dare compare Lebron’s plight to that of the American Indian. If you are one of these people, relax. I know it’s not that serious.

What is (slightly) serious though is the fact that, like my dad rooting against the Indians, I believe that those vehemently rooting for Lebron to fail will be on the wrong side of history. 20 years from now, I have no doubt that even the most fervent members of the anti-Lebron fan club will be thinking to themselves “Wait…why was I rooting so hard against him again?”

“Being on the wrong side” of history doesn’t necessarily mean that these people are rooting against a person who will eventually become a champion. Whether the Heat beat the Thunder in the Finals or not has no bearing on my argument. My point is that in time, history will show that today’s prevailing narrative — Lebron represents everything wrong with sports/celebrity culture — was false, and we were fools to believe it.

His situation has created a paradox where people are rooting against what they feel he “represents,” while simultaneously rooting for others who exhibit the exact same qualities. For instance, I watched game seven of the Eastern Conference finals at a sports bar in New York City. Maybe 80% of the people in attendance were noticeably rooting for the Celtics. The Boston Celtics. A team that won a championship a year after three of the 20 best players in the league decided to play together there.

Let me repeat myself: These were the Boston Celtics. I was in New York F*cking City. If you’re familiar with sports at all, you know that New York and Boston have fierce rivalries in every sport. They’re about as close to a contemporary version of the Hatfields and the McCoys as you’re going to get.

Yet, despite the decades of animus between these cities, the majority of the patrons in this bar were rooting for the Celtics just so that Lebron would lose. They could have given two shits about K.G. and Rondo and Ray and Doc. One of the bartenders was so anti-Lebron that if Paul Pierce sent him a text saying “Man, your daughter got some good p*ssy.” he probably would have replied back “Beat Lebron and you can f*ck my wife too!”

Now, saying that it’s wrong to root against Lebron doesn’t mean that you have to root for him. You do not have to be a fan of him or his game. And, if you are a fan of Kevin Durant (more on him a minute) and the Oklahoma Thunder, you (obviously) want Lebron and the Heat to lose because you want your team to win. The wrongness comes when a narrative makes you want a person to fail, regardless of who would benefit from that failure.

Also, fans of the “OKC represents everything right with sports” narrative, listen up. The funny thing about sports narratives is that they tend to be completely arbitrary and usually false. 10 years ago, Kobe Bryant was touted as the “Anti-Iverson,” the representation of what’s right with sports and how to play the right way….and you see what happened to him. After Kobe’s star fell, Lebron became the Anti-Kobe, the one who played the right way and respected the game the way it should be respected…and you see what happened to him. Today, Kevin Durant is the new golden boy, the Anti-Lebron, the one who does and says all the right things and doesn’t even have any visible tattoos.

I’m not suggesting (or hoping) that Durant will be found to be the antithesis of what the narrative currently says. But, like with the Cowboys and the Indians, maybe the distinction between who’s “good” and “bad” isn’t as clear as we want to believe.

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

5 Signs That You Might Be Dating a Zombie Who Might Zombie Apocalapyse Your A**

You’d pretty much have to live under a rock to not realize that the Zombie Apocalypse is upon us. From crazy ninjas eating homeless guys faces to random Black college students eating hearts, etc…one thing is for sure.

Black folks are TOTALLY taking over the crime market previously labeled as “Whites Only”.

Seriously, what is really going on these days. Obviously there are some mental health issues at play but do you realize HOW f*cked up you have to be in order to partake in cannibalism. In 2012? You can buy a 20-piece of chicken nuggets for like $2.99. The point is that you don’t need to eat other people. The rent may be too damn high but unhealthy foodstuffs are cheap as hell. Eating somebody’s heart or face just doesn’t seem necessary. At all. Unless you’re f*cked the f*ck up.

Moving on. Well, with this Zombie Apocalypse upon us, it is important to start looking for the signs. One day your best friend is cool as a fan, gat in hand, and then the next day this mofo is nibbling on your finger reaching for the Tabasco or Texas Pete. Now imagine if you’re out here dating in these streets!!!!! You JUST might end up dating a motherloving zombie. Now a stone cold non-killer like myself believes that Ace of Base had it right when they started sawing the signs. That’s because just like neon and STOP…signs exist.

So let’s take a look at 5 signs that the person you’re dating just might be a zombie (and thus you should probably cuz that relationship short).

1. They spend too much time examining and appreciating your physical features

One person sees appreciation, but think about it like a zombie? If I’m a zombie, I’m looking at you for the whitemeats, thighmeats, goodmeats, etc. What if I’m a fingerloving zombie? And I really admire your fingers. I’m just saying, anybody spending too much time appreciating certain features might be on that zombie sh*t.

2. They’re Boston Celtics fans

Two words: Marquise. Daniels.

3. They keep showing up announced

Aside from just being straight up stalkeresque, I feel like anybody who constantly shows up unannounced just might kill you. But since they are already f*cked up, there’s a good chance they just might try to eat your face. There could be a pun in there but I’m too lazy to find it and its 11:56pm right now and I’m not even halfway through this sh*t because I keep watching replays of the Wade missing that damn 3. Sure he had a good look and sure you can’t ask for a better shot than that, but WHY THE HELL CAN’T THE HEAT HIT FREE THROWS??

What was I talking about again? Ah yes…zombies. And dating.

4. When they write you love letters or texts – it is 2012 afterall – they tell you that they can’t picture life without you

While that absolutely sounds like the sweetest thing Lauryn Hill has ever known (SUMMER JAM…go Nas) just think about that for a second. If somebody determines that they no longer want to be with you…and you have already determined that you cannot live without that person…wouldn’t that effectively kill you? Yes. And if you are dead and come back into the game on some zombieing sh*t, wouldn’t you THEN go eat the heart and calf of the person who kilt you dead?

See also: P.M. Dawn – I’d Die Without You and Robin Thicke – Lost Without You

5. They always want to take you to Brazilian steak houses or places that serve inordinate amounts of meat

And yes, if your boo ONLY eats MeatLovers pizzas and isn’t being ironic, then there’s a good chance that you’re dating somebody who might go full zombie on you at some point. They’ve already got an affinity for meat. Or one of those places that services bacon-wrapped, pork chopped wrapped, steak with sausage balls in the middle. Yeah. that motherlover is already on that flesh sh*t. And you know what you have? Flesh. And do you know what motherlovers on that flesh sh*t do? Go zombie. Word to big bird.

Well that’s 5 signs to look out for. What else do you have? This is VERY IMPORTANT right now. With zombies out here going all hipster on us, we need all of the help we can muster. And um, what the f*ck up is up with the zombie apocalypse anyway? What do you think is really going on in these streets??

Talk to me.


the EXpectation factor

Nothing irks me more than somebody passing off incorrect knowledge as a matter-of-fact truth. (Wait, that’s a lie. Sports teams from Boston, T-Mobile’s customer care and women who sound like Remy Ma irk me a bit more, but that’s besides the point)

This practice is especially prevalent when speaking about relationships, where many people swear by opinions and theories that are more idiotic than deshawn stevenson.

nowhere else is this more evident than the “fact” that men are typically willy-nilly in regards to dating; seeing and juggling multiple chicks without a concern or care in the world….a fact which couldn’t be further from the truth. we ALWAYS date with a concern, or, better yet, expectations, while in fact…

…women are actually the ones who will date without expectations. it’s women that’ll go out with someone, happy to get a free meal and a couple mojitos in preparation for the f-buddy coming over later, immediately after her “no-expectations” date….sometimes even having the date unknowingly drop them off at the f-buddy’s house!

ladies, don’t bother denying this because i know personally that this occurs. i’ve been that f-buddy, and, admittedly, i might have been at the other end of the equation as well. this scenario, which i’ve coined TCSE (the coldest shoulder ever) is quite possibly the cruelest accepted dating practice known to man, concrete proof that all women are direct descendants of dick cheney.

On the other hand, men don’t date unless we have some type of expectation. We don’t go on “dates” just to chill because we’re bored, or just because it’s nice out and we want to turn off our ac for a couple hours cause the electric bill was too high last month, or just to model the new ken cole boots we bought last weekend with the saved ac money, for two reasons:

1. typically, we’re the one’s doing the initial approach, which basically meant that we already imagined you eating salty cucumbers while sitting bucket-naked on a furry stool had some sort of romantic expectation for you before we even knew what the hell your name was

2. money. because we’re the ones generally footing the bill (which, as p remarked yesterday, could easily crawl into the $200 range in one simple night) we have to be extremely discerning in regards to who we decide to spend money on. we’re not spending the equivalent of our cable bill in one night just to “enjoy her company“, when we could have just as easily spent that money on the bootytalk box set on a pair of j’s and the scorsese collection

Now, admittedly, our expectations are limited. Every woman that we go out of our way to invite and go out with is placed in one of two categories.

Category One: Maybe I can settle down with this woman.

Category Two: Maybe I can settle down with this woman…tonight, preferably in a bed somewhere, although the back of my truck will do for now.

That’s it.

If a woman doesn’t fit into either of these categories for us, then we’re not dating her. Ladies, on every date you’ve ever been on and will ever be on, you’ll be sitting across the table from someone trying to decide if they want to wife you or just bed you. Even if a guy seems to be “going through the motions“, he’s sitting across from you thinking “Maybe I’ll get lucky and get some tonight from whateverthehellhernameis, even with my half-assed effort“.

now please excuse me while i go watch “the departed” for the sixteenth time. yeah, i know. 16 might sound a bit excessive…but at least i know exactly what to expect

—the champ