Heroes Of The Week!

Warhol Superman

Walking the Talk: I checked out a Vlog piece on Yahoo featuring former Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman. It’s a worthwhile education she lays down, in which she covers her sexual abuse at the hands of Dr. Larry Nassar; how the system treats victims of abuse and how some people feel that she should just stop talking about it and ‘move on’; as if this were a speeding ticket.

This young woman’s message struck such a chord with me that I actually tweeted her some encouraging words. Me! The gist of it was to keep talking about it, and to never stop talking about it. Because her courage is an inspiration to so many of the victims of abuse. And for those who don’t get it, well, they’re just never going to get it.

Aly was one of the greats of her sport. But as a human being, she has far exceeded all of her many achievements. By being true to herself and the countless others who once lived in the dark, she has provided a light. What a hell of a young woman, and a true hero of any week.

LeBron James ain’t getting Anthony Davis. Or Kyrie. Or Durant. No more team building and very likely, no more title runs for King James.

The Empire Strikes Hack: The big zero of my week is Jussie Smollett. The former star of Empire and any other gig in the foreseeable future.

I feel badly for this kid, who made an absolutely horrible choice and in so doing, has basically thrown away his career. But he did this to himself. And while he may not have stopped to consider the damage his stunt would incur, it’s quite evident. Because the world is divided enough without made up stories of racial attacks. Smollett has affected the wrong kind of change, at a time when we need the right kind, desperately.

His story had me shaking my head as soon as the MAGA stuff came out. I mean, show me the white conservatives who are hanging out in Chicago with rope and bleach at that hour. And please, show me the white conservatives who even know what the show ‘Empire’ is about. Puhleeze. When Al Sharpton chimes in by saying Smollett should be held accountable for making up a racially charged story, you know this thing has become a dumpster fire.

Roger Stone is a meme wrapped in a vine, inside a forgettable joke scrawled on the wall in a men’s restroom. 

Me, Myself and Why?- The ultimate diva Antonio Brown just keeps digging himself into a bigger hole. He’s ruined any chances of reconciliation with his current team, and now he’s laying waste to the field as well.

I was willing to give Brown the benefit of the doubt when this whole episode began. His quarterback does come off as a phony, not to mention a diva himself. And his coach does tend to run a loose ship. But Big Ben and Coach Tomlin can’t be blamed for most of the shit Brown has pulled before and since his trade demands. That’s on AB. Brown might yet luck into a marriage with Aaron Rodgers, in spite of himself. But my lasting image of the man has nothing to do with his achievements on the field. Nope, I’ll best remember him for how he accorded himself off it. What a dolt.

Did I dream that whole thing about El Chapo scoring the gig as host of the Oscars? 

And finally, a doubleheader to finish up this week’s installment of Heroes. Because the MLB doesn’t offer up the antiquated two games for one ticket price any longer, and it’s one of the many losses us fans have to bear.

Because in the span of a couple weeks, the game lost two of its stalwart members- Frank Robinson and Don Newcombe.

Frank Robinson hit 586 career home runs, which currently places him 10th on MLB’s all time list (7th on mine). He won Rookie of the Year with the Cincinnati Reds in 1956. He won an AL and an NL and a World Series MVP. He was a Triple Crown winner, a Gold Glove winner, a 14 time all star and a two time World Champion. In 1974, Robinson became the first black manager when the Cleveland Indians named him their player/manager. After his playing days, he went on to manage the San Francisco Giants and then the Baltimore Orioles, where he won AL Manager of the Year honors in 1989. He was a first ballot Hall of Famer in 1982.

Don Newcombe began his career with the Newark Eagles of the Negro League before being released from his contract in order to sign with Branch Rickey’s Brooklyn Dodgers. Newcombe made his pro debut in 1949, becoming the third black pitcher to pitch in the majors. He proceeded to win 17 games while leading the league in shutouts while helping the Dodgers win the pennant. He won Rookie of the Year honors for his efforts. Newcombe was an integral part of Brooklyn’s first and only World Championship in 1955, when they took down the mighty Yankees in seven games. A year later, he would win twenty seven games and the Cy Young Award.

Newcombe could turn a baseball into a vitamin and make the fiercest hitter swallow it whole. While Robinson could take a one way ticket fastball and quickly turn it into a round trip. Their talent resulted in plenty of hardware, and an abiding respect among their peers. But their baseball lives didn’t stop there. The two men remained inextricably linked to the game they loved until their final days. Today’s players owe a tremendous debt to these two men, one that could never be repaid. Robinson and Newcombe always played down their struggles as young players in a racially divided culture where many still considered them outsiders. They overcame every obstacle and they changed the game for the better. Theirs was the power of dreams come to life. And the passing of these two giants brings to mind a quote by Homer. And what he greatly thought, he nobly dared. 

Says it all.







102 thoughts on “Heroes Of The Week!

  1. Well now … a bit of BS&T music is good for my morning. Cheers to Raisman! … Robinson & Newcombe … HUGE! …. I keep thinking that Newcombe-Campanella was the first Black battery in MLB – but dammit, I’m not sure!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I would watch an El Chapo-hosted Oscars. If I was his writer for the evening, I’d make him do the show in handcuffs, just for fun, and after each person one, the camera comes back to him and says, “That’s so great. Can you dig it?” JOKE RE: HIS TUNNEL-MAKING! Let’s run that gem into the ground!!

    I nodded off during the sports portion. Y’all turn into Charlie Brown’s teacher then because I’m not familiar, you know. But Aly Raisman. I know (of) her! Strong young woman.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. B,

    First off, loving the new look of the blog. Quite the makeover you have given it! Only bummer is, my email no longer says “Sorryless” and that’s a sad thing. Important thing is I do get a notification but…

    K, onto this here heroes post! (I promise I won’t go on an on… maybe).

    Bravo to Aly Raisman. Takes a whole helluva lot of courage to stand up and speak and not be shut down. We need more of her (of course, we need less – like zero – Nassars…)

    Jussie Smollett – whoo-ee.. is there a lot of hate out there on the social networks. What a dumbaass. I don’t need to wish him ill – he has brought on a shitload all by himself. In these racially tense times, what in the name of all that is black and white was he thinking? There is enough REAL shit out there without making any up. I’ll leave it at that.

    You know me and baseball, but kudos to you on shining the light on the late greats Frank Robinson and Don Newcombe. Impressive stats – and I dunno if you saw “Fences” with Denzel & Viola but he was one of those black players that would have had a helluva career – but he was before these two gents’ time…

    And, lastly, OK, OK, I tried not to go on and on) you and Frank sure went on and on! I couldn’t help but eavesdrop on my way down to the comment box, chuckling most of the way 😉


    Liked by 1 person

    • Q,

      Props to Ali B for the header. I threw in the background tiling and a slight change of fonts. As for the posts no longer giving readers just a preview, not sure how to get that one back. But I dig having a sidebar again. Gracias!

      YES. Much more to the Aly and much, much, much less of the others. The abusers and the people who “don’t want to hear it” because it harshes their mellow. Because its uncomfortable. For chrissakes, what do these people think the victims go through?

      Of course, now the circus begins. Trump tweeted to him, as if a first grader. Can you imagine, a sitting President getting involved in this episode in THAT way.

      The Negro League and all of its affiliates had SO much talent that never got to play in the major leagues. It’s a crying shame. I read a quote as I was going through and reading up on Robinson and Newcombe. Of course, when I research something, I end up in all sorts of odd places, and so I started reading about the Negro Leagues and I came upon a thought uttered by the legendary Yankee, Lou Gehrig. He said that baseball should be for EVERYONE, regardless of race. He said this in the thirties, when such an opinion wasn’t very popular. It struck me that the great players WANTED to play with their peers of color. But management, once again, bowed to the ignorant convention of the time.

      Frank showed some sarcasm there, but it was strictly a lesson in what sarcasm looks like. Surely he doesn’t use it in his every day business. 😉



      • I love the new look. No, no, I do get a preview, it’s just the title of your blog has disappeared in favour of WordPress.com with a mention of Sorryless. I dunno if it automatically changes when you make changes but it didn’t for Frank so, maybe there’s a place in the settings…

        Sad we actually need Alys, when you think of it…

        Seriously, I cannot believe that orange fool got himself involved in this farce. I’ll stop there.

        Yes, the Lou Gehrigs of the world cared not one whit about colour. Talent is what matters. I know what you mean about searching for something and ending up on a road you never imagined…. that’s how that head of yours gets so full of cool stuffs.

        He did. I’m sure you’re right. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Gawd, I don’t know what to think about the Steelers these days. I do think that Tomlin is the problem and while the Steelers don’t fire coaches, it may be time to do so in this case. Regarding Roethlisberger, what big name QB doesn’t act like an ass at times? AB is another in the long line of prima donna WRs who thinks the spotlight should only shine on him. What is it about that position that attracts this kind of mental case athlete? But back to Roethlisberger. Yes, he’s got issues and a couple of sordid incidents in his past, but he did manage to mature himself a bit. And, in our household, his actions after the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting helped mitigate some of his failings. Have you seen the shoes he wore after the shooting?

    Love the Roger Stone thing … he is a one of a kind that’s for sure.

    And as for Lebron … he is reaping what he sows. What player would want to play with him, other than role players who don’t have a chance without latching on to somebody like him. He is at the top of my list of least favorite current-day NBA players. At the top of the list, and I’m pretty sure while most NBA players respect his talent, they’re driven away from playing with him because of his attitude.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mark,

      I did check those out, and you’re right, he’s grown up. I don’t consider him a ‘leader’ in the same way some other QB’s are, but he’s changed. That said, the WR position is the glamor spot in the league. They fetch the big highlights.

      LeBron asked for this. He came to LA for two reasons, and I think his ultimate reason- to connect with the movers and shakers- was the overriding factor. Since he does want to be an owner some day. He took that route over winning, because as presently constituted, this LA team is not great by any means. And now it looks as if nobody wants to play with an aging player, who while still great, takes so much energy away from everyone else.

      When the whole Anthony Davis fiasco was going on recently, I joked that the Lakers should trade LeBron . . .


  5. Yo, 💖 the new background and header! Well done, Marc. Gosh there’s so much to shake one’s head about re the heroes and zeros this week. Jussie really screwed the pooch. His boneheaded concoction hit all the wrong notes and set the LGBT community back light years in this, the 50th year since the Stonewall riots. Whatever his motivation was, his execution was so stupidly executed. I mean, he paid his friends by freakin check! Jeez, he’s as dumb as the MAGA peeps he was trying to tarnish. Egad.

    Kudos to Ms. Raisman…a real hero and champion.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The Smollett case is a head scratcher. Why would someone making 100K an episode make this kind of decision? And he paid these guys with a persona check!. I was surprised by the news conference and the words spoken by the Superintendent Of CPD but applauded his directness.

    Antonio Brown….really?

    I’m at an age, and have been for some years now, where losing athletes I grew up watching in there youth is tough. It makes me feel older. Of course the same holds true for those we care about but sports helped us escape and dream. Sad to see them gone.

    Liked by 1 person

    • There is no good reason for it. But like I said to someone, this was HIS decision, not a group and not a party. The political football has already been thrown, however. And we have to see it for what it was, a really really bad decision by one human being. I wish it had never happened, but it did.
      My concern, more than all the politics that is going to get thrown into the mix, is for others who will have to pay for this. What happens when someone really IS attacked? Will their story be doubted from the get? I sure hope not, but with this unfortunate precedent, who can be sure?

      I am always in awe of what players who came before accomplished for the game they love. Not just on the field, but in how they paved the way for future generations. Talk about protests, Curt Flood sacrificed his career so that players would be able to move after a given time.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re so right about players who came before and what they gave up. Curt Flood is a great example and he never gets the credit he deserves. The sad part is, I don’t think many current players in any of the major sport leagues have a real appreciation for the history of the game. Some do, but the vast majority don’t really get it.

        You’re right, there will be people who will be victims in the future that will pay for his choice of greed and attention.

        Liked by 1 person

        • When I hear some of today’s players talk about the ‘plantation’ rules, I cringe. My God, to think what players of color once had to deal with. It was once said of Jackie Robinson that he was chosen as much for his ability to stand up to the hatred he would face as for his tremendous athletic abilities. And I believe it. And he’s the story we are familiar with. There were scores of men who went through hell to take the field. They shouldn’t be forgotten.

          That’s one of the sadder aspect of this very sad episode. The idea that someone will be judged and scrutinized based on this template. And what’s even scarier? What if this prevents someone from even reporting it, for fear they will not be believed? Damn.

          Liked by 1 person

  7. Another giant post, Marc. I think AB has painted himself into a very cold corner. Good luck to him. I have to admit I’m exhausted from working my way down the comment stream. You and Frank need to take your bit on the road. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

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