If You Build It They . . . Oh Never Mind

The world of politics has generated more fairy tales than Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm. 

Take this Trump Wall © for example. It ain’t happening. Not even if you fronted Mexico ten billion dollars, not even then. So why does Mister Golden Hair keep beating on these dead drums? Because it’s his one trick, and he’s going to schlep it into history’s footnotes, that’s why.

If Trump was really, truly serious about creating an impediment for unwanted tourists, he wouldn’t be talking up a wall. He would be telling us why a moat is the best idea.

A moat makes TOO much sense, which is why it’ll never happen. It figures that Trump would want to build up, seeing as how he never attached his name to a skyscraper that didn’t run over budget. But if he really wanted to stem the tide of illegal immigration in this country, he’d be shoveling dirt rather than yanno, what he’s shoveling. Generally speaking, digging is less expensive than building up- unless you live in Massachusetts.

As Americans, digging is second nature. We dig in to smorgasboards, we dig our music, we dig challenges and oftentimes we dig our own graves- metaphorically speaking. You dig? Of course you do, you’re an American!

We could build a moat that would leave the peeps in the Seven Kingdoms breathless with envy. Let’s say a quarter mile wide and deeper than Johnny Depp’s thoughts on matrimony. And then we could fill it with water, and crocodiles. This makes sense from a security standpoint AND it also serves an ecological purpose in that it will help to repopulate an endangered species. Hey PETA! . . . You’re welcome.

A wall is going to cost Mexico (sic) tens of billions of dollars, and that’s before the first brick is laid. And really, there’s a better chance Tim Tebow gets laid in the next year than the first brick of this wall. And if the wall does start happening sooner rather than later, it means Trump won the general election. Hardly a sure thing, considering he’s behind in fifty seven states. And we only have fifty.

Okay, so he’s actually doing better than any of us thought. Like Jason Vorhees and Michael Myers and Marie Osmond, he just won’t die. So . . . say Trump does win, what then? Even his followers are well aware this wall talk is shakier than a Stevie Wonder self portrait. Many of his followers get the joke. More specifically, the ones who don’t find Larry the Cable Guy the least bit entertaining. Them. Those peeps fully expect Trump to trash the wall talk should he attain the Oval Office. They’re pre-conditioned for disappointment, which is why they’re behind Trump. Really, the only people- outside of the Larry the Cable Guy demographic- who are looking forward to a wall along the Southern border are graffiti artists and reality show producers. 

Hilary has never been a closer. She snatched defeat from the jaws of victory in 2008 and she allowed Bernie Sanders to become more popular than Harley Quinn on a party bus. There’s still time for her to awaken her inner Sun Tzu, but to quote one of my favorite Yogi-isms, it’s getting late early. She best get to work, or invite the possibility that her Homecoming Night morphs into a Dr. Seuss readalong, narrated by Louis C.K. Blue State, Red State, Red State . . blew! 

She can lower the bar on Trump, rather than the other way around. See him a Southern Border wall and raise the idea of The Moat. And so what if it doesn’t jibe with her message of inclusivity? It’s just a political promise . . . and political promises are made to be broken. Nixon promised to end the war in Vietnam while Bush 41 insisted he wouldn’t raise taxes and Obama sold hope and change as if Christmas trees on December 24th.

They all won. Because that’s how politics works. Promise voters the world, even if you have no moolah in the old bank account. So what if those promises prove to be like glitter from a strip club and they end up following you home. Your home is the White House, and hell . . the explanations as to why those promises didn’t happen? That’s what press secretaries are for.

Imma shoot off an email to Hil.

Zombies and Ellas and Diddys, Oh My

A few months ago I noticed my recently played Spotify artists ranged from Eazy-E to Otis Redding to Britney Spears to someone like John Denver. I don’t actually remember the last two, but I do remember telling Jennie about it. After we both laughed, Jennie sent me a poem made up of song lyrics from those four artists. And it was awesome!

Which sparked an idea… what if we challenged each other to come up with a couple of poems based off of song titles only from five artists we pick for each other? We’d even post them all here on Drinks and let Mister Thorn pick the winner.

It was one of those things that seemed like a good idea at the time. Then inevitably we both got busy and this became another brainstorming idea — one of hundreds — that got left behind on The Island of Forgotten Ideas.

Until I found the scrap of paper I had jotted my little poems on somewhere at the bottom of my purse.

Jennie had challenged me to the following singers/bands:

1. Diddy (or Puff Daddy or Sean Combs, since technically they’re the same person. I think.)
2. Nine Inch Nails (or Trent Reznor)
3. Rob Zombie (or White Zombie)
4. Lana Del Rey
5. Ella Fitzgerald

So what I had to do was create a poem out of song titles from each of the above artists. Easy peasy, right? Yeah right. You google Rob Zombie song titles and then get back to me on how easy peasy it is then. (For example, some of his titles include: “Sick Bubblegum,” “Scum of the Earth,” “Ging Gang Gong De Do Gong De Laga Raga,” and “Well, Everybody’s Fucking in a U.F.O.”)

But I had a great time coming up with a few. Wanna challenge me with five artists? I’ll work on them for a future post. Or I can challenge YOU. Jennie had hers written down too; if she can find her slip of paper, we’ll post them here sometime. We’ll even still let Cayman pick the winner. xo, christy

**********

1.

I’ll be missing you
The perfect drug
Medication for the melancholy
When I get low, I get high
God knows I tried

**********

2.

Whatever Lola wants, Lola gets
Money ain’t a problem
Fucked my way to the top
Never gonna stop
Head like a hole, I’d rather die, than give you control.

**********

3.

God of thunder
In the wee small hours of the morning
You get me closer to god
Will you still love me when I’m no longer young and beautiful?
I’m coming home.

**********

Artist order
1. Diddy, NIN, Rob Zombie, Ella, Lana
2. Ella, Diddy, Lana, Rob Zombie, NIN
3. Rob Zombie, Ella, NIN, Lana, Diddy

 

**********

“Young and Beautiful” by Lana Del Rey

**********

*Hey Michelle, did you notice I’m still channeling my inner-Dorothy like I did in my Lovely Fire post? Hint, look at the title.

The Long and the Short of It (Abridged Version)

More isn’t always better.

Take for instance, “Long story short . . . ”

There’s no such thing as “Long story short,”. Just as there is no such thing as bread in Chinese restaurants or professional football in Miami. It’s a boldface lie in long britches. It’s like Three Easy Steps! or the starting time for a big sporting event or a ‘vote of confidence’. It’s a funny line from Jim Belushi, an honest line from Hilary Clinton, the bottom line at Bank of America.

It’s human nature to expand rather than contract and in so doing, to waste someone else’s time. It’s easier to shake and rattle, rather than to simply roll. That’s why we have malls and stretch limos and Don McLean.

People who have a story to tell always want to tell you the whole thing. 

The last recorded incident of a long story actually being short? Try The Gettysburg Address in November, 1863. Which clocked in at two minutes despite its dubious “Four Score and Seven Years Ago,” beginning. Somehow, Lincoln was able to enumerate on such lofty ideals as honor, sacrifice and the underpinnings of the Declaration while framing the bloodshed at Gettysburg as a symbolic call to union by God and country . . in two minutes time! For the sake of comparison, Cleveland Browns head coach Mike Pettine’s average pre-game speech last season clocked in at a robust four minutes and twenty eight seconds. The Browns went 3-13.

Think about that one tomorrow morning when the other end of your line recites a thesis on why they can never date anyone with kids ever again. And best of luck trying to cut that conversation short.

Current Events For Dummies (That’s redundant, isn’t it?)

I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sick and fucking tired of “Breaking News” that ain’t really even news. So Imma focus on some of the peeps who are swimming through this week’s news cycle instead. Because it’s what Wolf Blitzer would want.

Trump- Trump peeps will tell you that’s why they LOVE him; because he “tells it like it is.”- an intentionally vague and wholly indefinable concept due to the fact it is entirely semantical. Noam Chomsky and Pat Robertson “tell it like it is” from different corners of the galaxy, with zero promise of a nine o’clock tee time to hash things out. In other words, it’s another way of saying “I’m right and you’re wrong.”

Trump could have been a legit agent of change in this country. Just look at the truths he’s expunged from the murky undercarriage of our business as usual existence. Over the course of a year he laid waste to the GOP field, exposing many of them for what they have become- lazy, entitled talking heads who are more adept at righteous indignation than right thinking leadership. He fired on the Democratic machinery for being entrenched elitists who believe they know what’s best for the whole wide world, even when they don’t. He introduced himself as Exhibit A when railing on about how grass roots movements win Oscars but money still wins political favoritism. Problem is, every good point is soon buried under the inane rants of a man who prefers to play to the frustrated roars of his followers rather than pound out common sense alternatives for an ailing system.

An agent of change doesn’t hide behind euphemistic walls. He doesn’t flip flop and he doesn’t talk about how great America used to be when the fact of the matter is that a democracy’s greatness is ALWAYS presently constituted rather than a byproduct of sketchy recollections. Change should feel uncomfortable, but it shouldn’t be unreasonable.

Ryan Lochte- Never mind . . .

Colin Kaepernick- Sit, stand, nap . .  it’s not my business how someone chooses to recognize (or not) the National Anthem. Personally, I stand and I put my hand on my heart and I give thanks to the men and women who defend our right to speak freely, think openly and play Pokemon Go. I have no problem with someone who uses their high profile platform to address social issues, just so long as they are informed and earnest. And I’m dubious as to Kap’s ability to carry through on what he started. I mean, did it just occur to Kap that we have serious issues to attend to? Where was his indignation before now? Cynic that I am, the timing seems opportunistic; a player on his last NFL legs decides to summon his inner Ali against a system he deems unfair and worse. Why did he wait? Seems to me, he might have begun his crusade after winning the starter’s job, or after signing his big contract, or during Super Bowl week a few years ago. Whatevs, it’s his opinion now. He’s going to have to deal with the criticism, but he’s also going to have to come across as invested. It’s not enough to address the failings of a system. If it was, then public policy meetings would begin at Happy Hour. Maybe Kap surprises everyone and becomes a clear and consistent voice for those whose voices have been muted for far too long. We’ll see.

Dwayne Wade- He lost his cousin to gun violence last Friday night- Nykea Aldridge is one of more than 400 victims to have been shot, and one of 87 fatalities . . . in August. Chicago is closing in on 500 homicides for the year, and there are still four months to go. I don’t know how this changes, but I do know that Wade is fully invested in the fight for change, even before Friday night. He knows of the cause he stands behind and he is a voice that won’t be here and gone. And he’s in a town that desperately needs him, not for his basketball skills but for the change he can affect.

Anthony Weiner- He screwed up his career in Congress and then derailed his mayoral chances because he was playing Sponge Bob No Pants on his cell phone, but that’s not why he’s a phony in my book. Nah, it’s his self righteous, “I know better than you do” attitude that defined his political career that has me shaking my head. He went after diplomats for the millions of dollars in unpaid parking fines they owed the city, and yet his fleet also had a slew of unpaid parking fines . . . huh. Weiner devoted a ton of time and energy to cracking down on tobacco smuggling on the internet- which is a fiscal consideration worth fighting for if you’re in Congress. But smuggling penis pics across the internet- even when he had no idea who was receiving them- was okay. What a dick.

Tim Tebow- Why the hate for this guy? I mean . . he’s never been in trouble with the law, despite playing for the Florida Gators! He’s never failed a drug test, tweeted something moronic, dumped Taylor Swift, beaten up a Cub Scout or been arrested for jacking a pair of Beats from the local Target. And yet . .the spigot of hate directed at this dude by his critics is more epic than Brad Pitt’s lonesome anger in Killing Them Softly. How did he become such a polarizing figure when . . . Oh yeah, I remember now. He’s a white, Christian conservative. I’m not a Christian conservative, but I’m also not a bully. I don’t pick on people who are different than me, I don’t call them out for trying and failing, and I sure as hell don’t sandblast them for picking themselves up and trying something completely different. The haters got the wrong man, but I’m pretty sure most of them already knew that.

Chris Brown- Speaking of bullies, here’s a dude who never met a bad idea he couldn’t make even worse. But his Scarface routine is a new level of stupid, even for Brown. It’s never a good idea to tell the cops to “bring it on” . . . schmuck.

Terrorist Clowns- This story seems odd and far fetched, but in the event there are clowns in the woods? The peeps of Greenville County best learn the Ritual of Chud . . . quickly.

I’ll end this mind numbing experience with a shout out to Travis Rudolph. The Florida State wide receiver recently visited a middle school in Tallahassee, where he spotted a boy eating lunch all by his lonesome. So he joined the kid. He must’ve forgotten the macho mandate thrown down by Nike, ESPN and all the other merchants of menace who sell swagger and attitude and mean girl behavior as cool shit worthy of celebration. Here was Travis, keeping it real . . . by behaving as a kind, compassionate human being.

That right there . . . is some breaking news.

 

 

 

 

A Fair and Imbalanced Rio Recap (In Technicolor!)

You know what I find amazing about the Summer Olympics? The fact that very few people know what a fortnight means. It’s Old English and it means fourteen nights, but since it has nothing to do with live streaming or loaded nachos, Americans are oblivious. Granted, this ain’t the most patriotic way to begin a post about the Summer Games, but I really dig the word fortnight so you’ll have to excuse my delayed red, white and blue holler.

If asked to recap the Rio Games in five words or less, I would probably go with “A Fortnight of Kicking Ass.” We won 121 overall medals- with zero help from the Clinton Foundation. That’s the most since Russia was, well . . . Russia. We won the most gold, silver and bronze medals and one of our top swimmers ignited an international incident, so really, we accomplished everything we set out to do. I’d like to think we sent the rest of the world home hating on us just a little bit more. Let’s face it, nobody hates Turkmenistan, other than the peeps who call it home.

Admittedly, I thought Rio was going to be a disaster, what with the sulfuric acid quality of the water and the specter of a Zika Virus. Not to mention, the IOC blew most of its back room coin on added security measures for an event whose threat level was higher than Joe Namath at a Monday Night Football game. If the Summer Olympics had been a television pilot, it would’ve been canceled in May.

Thankfully, the Summer Olympic Games of 2016 happened. And they happened bigger and brighter than most any fortnight’s worth of games I can remember. Every day possessed a forever quality, every medal a validation of hard work and persistence, every moment possessed the glorious quality of limitless possibilities.

Michael Phelps pocketed five golds and a silver. His continued dominance is all the more amazing when you consider he eats ten pounds worth of McDonald’s a day. While the majority of Americans might be able to match his Big Mac intake, they’d have a hard time making it from one side of a hot tub to the other after doing so.

And what about Katie Ledecky? She scored four golds and a silver, smashing her world record time in the 800 meter freestyle. She was so far ahead of the rest of the field that she grabbed some Mickey D’s with Michael before making it back in time to see the other swimmers finish. Her competition for the 2020 Games in Tokyo should petition for a five second head start.

Sports/Activities/Silliness I would love to see attached to the Olympics? Sure, why not.

A top five or so list of sports I want to see Olympicized

1-Beer League Softball
2-MMA
3-Cooking
4-Motorcycle Jumping
5-Shin Kicking
6-Turnstile Jumping

Our lady gymnasts, led by Simone Biles, were a delight. Not only did they take gold in floor, vault, all around and team, they had me watching gymnastics. Not to mention, using delight in a sentence . . . and meaning it. Our lady ballers were just plain dominant as they rolled to another gold while proving to me that someday? We’re gonna see a lady in the Association. Fo Sho. And I would be remiss if I left out the US women’s soccer team. The defending gold medal winners failed to reach the finals for the first time in their history, but Hope Solo aside, they’re golden just the same. Most of the inroads soccer has made in this country over the past few decades is because of the girls.

The NBA won a gold medal, and so now I guess all the pressure is off Kevin Durant. Just kidding. The US men’s track and field team tried to sign Usain Bolt as a free agent, but failing that, still matched Jamaica’s 11 medals. We failed to medal in ping-pong, handball and badminton . . which is actually something to be really fucking proud of.

Rio Scene Stealer- Same dude who has been atop my Olympic marquee since he broke in with three world record times at the ’08 Games in Beijing. Usain Bolt. If there is life beyond this planet, they can’t have him back.

We won our first ever gold in the triathlon thanks to Gwen Jorgensen, and it’s really kind of odd to contemplate the dichotomy of the Summer Olympics events, where a ping-pong champ gets the same medal as someone like Jorgensen . . . so I won’t.

Rio Bravo Moment- US runner Abbey D’Agostino imploring New Zealander Nikki Hamblin during their 5,000 meter race to “Get up!” after the two collided, basically cancelling each other out. Despite being hurt in the crash, Abbey D made sure Hamblin was gonna finish the race with her.

Goddamn, I’ve been talking up America as if I’m Sean Hannity busting a Happy Hour nut at Applebee’s. So lemme spend my last few thoughts on shit that made me go hmmmm.

Like, is Bob Costas ever going to get old and die? . . . And what’s the deal with Rio water? It’s either so antiseptic as to render pool water green, or toxic enough to peel flesh . . . Golf at the Olympics has been a thing? . . . Baseball at the Olympics hasn’t? . . .

And last because it’s least, we really didn’t need “Convenience Store-Gate” to let us in on the fact that Ryan Lochte is a complete fucking idiot. The buzz this story generated really does speak to our astounding inability to separate news from just plain stupid shit. For one thing, he’s Ryan Lochte. For another, he lied to Matt Lauer in an interview. Who doesn’t lie to Matt Lauer in an interview? Did he embarrass our country? Hells no. It’s Ryan Fucking Lochte we’re talking about! Hope Solo was a lot more embarrassing after that loss to the Swedes. And don’t get me started on how this makes Rio look bad, because them peeps do a solid job of that without any help.

Giselle called. She wants her sexy back.

What would George Steinbrenner Say? I mean, if he wasn’t dead . . .

All apologies to the other leagues, but the MLB trade deadline? Is. Tha. Shit.

Not sure why I’m apologizing since the truth needs no apology. It just be. Hey, the other leagues have their cool shit. Like, the NFL is year round applause- they don’t need a July 31st holiday. And the NBA has July 10, when the biggest names be like “Bitches, it’s been real” before jumping to a fresh crib. And the NHL? Well . . . it has cool uniforms. And plenty of ice.

But the MLB trading deadline always gives us something we didn’t figure on seeing. For instance, my vaunted New York Yankees. The franchise Apple would’ve created if Steve Jobs had been around at the beginning of the last century. The franchise of Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle, Jackson, Jeter, Rivera and, not to mention twenty seven world championships. The franchise that everybody loves to hate, with the exception of Darth Vader and Marie Osmond . . . has gone rogue. The 2016 trading deadline gifted us the kind of once in a generation proposition we never thought we’d live to see. The Bronx Bombers SOLD. 

And not for nothing? But this Yankees fan loves it.

Mostly because we ain’t winning jack this season- not the pepper and most certainly not the cheese. The best we could’ve hoped for (Oh shit, did I just say ‘we’ again? I meant ‘they’.) is a wild card berth, after which we (they) would (still might) be promptly sent home. If you’re an MLB fan- affiliation notwithstanding- you know full well the Yankees ain’t cool with settling for the bronze medal. October is all or nothing time for the pinstripes, and for the last couple years they (Nailed it!) have produced plenty of nothing.

In keeping with one of nature’s unforgiving truths that every face needs a makeover (Ask Darth Vader, and Marie Osmond.) the Yanks went under the knife. They bid adieu to Aroldis Chapman and Andrew Miller- two of the best relievers in baseball not named Wade Davis. And then they cut bait with Carlos Beltran, thankfully before he punctured a lung or pulled his hamstring stepping on a tic tac.

In return, the Yankees got younger than Tom Cruise’s next girlfriend. Kitschy, coo . . . sexy.

Okay, you didn’t ask for it . . . which is why I’m supplying it. A top 5 things I hate about the MLB. Not because I want to harsh the mellow of this cosmic interlude, but simply because I haven’t posted a top 5 hate-list since forever.

Fans who make fun of the Yankees for selling- Have your team win something shiny. Until then, shaddup.

Not to mention, all those fans who bitched about the Yankees “buying titles”- Only in sports does an argument such as this gain legs. Of course, now that cable deals and revenue sharing allow most teams to “buy” titles, there’s not so much bitching going on with those same fans on account of the fact their teams still ain’t got the titles. Funny how that works.

Pete Rose- He IS the hit king, but he has to give it a fucking break with his transparently absurd jabs at Ichiro. Hey Pete! If Ichiro would’ve broken into the MLB at 19, you’d be sweating your balls off right about now. Give Ichiro his props and stop it with the bitter old man act. You’ll get in the Hall when Justin Bieber becomes MLB commissioner, so chill. Okay, so . . . you’ll be dead. But it still counts.

Roger Goodell- Oh shit, this isn’t MLB bizness. And thank God. We (Yes, we) had Bud Selig, so we didn’t need another rainmaker for the owners club telling us he wasn’t gonna hit and run while he was hitting and running. Sheriff G has presided over unprecedented growth whilst administering colonoscopies to the sacred chapels of NFL fandom from coast to coast. His good for the bottom line legacy is littered with not so cool shit. And on behalf of the fine peeps of Indy and Wisconsin strong, thanks for Sunday night Sheriff! Good to see you’re still dotting those I’s and crossing the fans!

The Chicago Cubs– I realize that hating on a team that hasn’t won a title since before the Titanic was built seems a tad harsh. But let’s be real about the team on Addison. They made a cottage industry out of a losing product without fear of FTC reprisal forever! These clowns have charged outrageous prices for the privilege of watching the hometown team lose and then they go and blame their lack of hardware on a curse . . . involving a Billy goat? No.

Jeff Passan- Is yet another reason why most sportswriters should be brought up on felony charges for stealing money. And they’ve been doing it since the Cubs actually won a World Series, outside of Back to the Future. Passan wrote what can best be described as a literary blowjob for the Los Angeles Dodgers last year. In said piece, Passan proclaimed that the Dodgers were the MLB’s new way of doing business while the Yankees were nothing more than the old money standard.  Welp, the big market Dodgers are still looking for their first world title since 1988. If the Yankees went 28 years between titles, the entire front office would be shot. And justifiably so.

Curses– I’m sick and fucking tired of teams that blame their inept ways on curses. From Billy goats to Babe Ruth, dollar bills, missing teeth, Jerry Glanville, stove pipe hats, V-neck sweaters, Super Bowl hookers, Bernie Brewer, Chief Wahoo . . . to flat champagne and Luis Gonzalez’s gum. All real curses with one prevailing theme: They are entirely full of shit. Packaged and sold by clubs who are really bad at the business of actually winning. It’s amazing what happens to curses when smart people are put in place and allowed to do their jobs. Just ask the fans in Boston, Cleveland and maybe even that team on Addison. Curses are the new bullshit.

I realize I probably went over the promised five of hated things, but like I said, it’s been a while. Not to mention, I would be better at math if I’d had a hot math teacher. Mr Bellagio? Wasn’t hot.

So count me in on this Yankees rebuild. Tex is gonna be gone at season’s end- which, given his injury history is likely to happen right . . about . . now. And A-Rod’s new job description will be to sit in the VIP suite and not say any headline grabbing shit. He’ll fail miserably on the latter count but it won’t get much play with Trump on the campaign trail. And so after all that selling, my (those? no . . . it’s my) Yankees have transformed their farm system into one of the best in the game while at the same time remaining in play for every single hot stove free agent in the next couple years. And so maybe the Indians are gonna win the World Series this year because it’s in Lebron’s contract. But come 2019, the Evil Empire is back.

Maybe Darth Vader can throw out the first ball. That’d be kitschy.

 

 

Dear Kevin

Kevin DurantMy man, you went and did it this time.

You threw down a seismic dunk on the Association by joining a club that won 73 games last year and came within a Superman’s cape performance by Lebron of ‘Best Ever’ status. You’re not much for nuance at this stage of your career, and I gotta admit . . . I dig it.

Now, all you have to do is win it all. As Stephen Spielberg would tell you, you gotta kill the whole shark because the audience expects nothing less. And so while this new Death Lineup you have rounded out could make a legit run at 70 wins if all goes according to plan, it’s gonna come down to the 16 games you have to win in May and June. Your new mates won 15 spring games this year and were five points short of winning a second straight title when the clock struck midnight on their magical season. It might as well have been a hundred points because the end result still feels empty.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled for you. Really and truly and forever. I have been in deep love with your skills ever since you were a hotshot kid making Texas Longhorn basketball something worth watching. I remember the first time I watched you play, thinking that you possessed the silky smooth capture of a Jamaal Wilkes jump shot with the cool hand moves of George Gervin at go time. You had next in a league built on Rushmore legends, and I knew you had the kind of special to carve a spot of your own.

It began with that short stint in Seattle- which was a fitting destination for your supersonic talents- before making Oklahoma City your home. For nine years, you did the place proud, on and off the court. You went and took a football enclave and turned spring football into a fallback option. When you made the finals against Miami, it was a bittersweet proposition for yours truly. I would’ve been thrilled with a tie. But that’s not how it works in sports.

As you well know, it’s all about winning the last game of the season. No matter how great you are, no matter how transcendent a player you might be, people demand that 35 wins a ring. In OKC for sure, in Golden State? Most definitely.

Anything less than a ring will be considered an epic fail. So lemme be the first to recognize that you did not take the ‘easy’ route as your critics claim. These people have no idea how to set a pick and roll, much less master it. They never made a defensive stop when they needed to, or sank a free throw with the season on the line or knocked down a three as the clock went blank. There is no such thing as ‘easy’ in professional sports. As Pat Riley once opined, there’s winning and there’s misery. He knows of what he speaks from his time in Los Angeles and Miami. Building a Hall of Fame lineup guarantees you nothing, other than the vitriol of every fan base that ain’t yours.

The haters are pulling out archival proof that you’re a phony because your decision doesn’t jibe with their opinions. I guess you were supposed to base a life changing decision on the Twitter feed. Rest assured, many of these same critics have taken turns trashing and adoring Lebron for more than a decade. So there’s that.

As for the revisionist history being thrown around, let’s review. The critics contend that back in the day, star players were anchored to their teams like a Norman Rockwell painting. Which is interesting, seeing as how Maravich, Wilt, Kareem, Moses Malone and Charles Barkley all changed uniforms in their primes. That last fella has been awfully noisy about your move, but he changed zip codes a couple times in search of a ring. Funny how that works.

I wish the haters would stop throwing the halcyon days of Magic, Bird and Jordan in your face when they get on their soapboxes. Such talk fails to acknowledge the chasm that exists between their past and your present. It asks us to consider their motives retroactively, because that’s the only way their argument can work. Thanks but no thanks. I’ll stick to understanding the league and its players inside the times we’re living in.

Listen, I daydreamed about you in a Miami Heat uniform. And I agreed with my son when he said Boston was a pretty solid idea. Not to mention, I was intrigued about your chances in OKC next year with a team that had added Oladipo and possessed a belief that they could take the Warriors out next time around.

But see, here’s the thing. Those were my wishes and opinions. Not yours. And I think the critics are forgetting how all this free agency business works. But I won’t, promise. I’ll be rooting for big things from you in your new Bay area digs. And if you win it all, I’m gonna be pretty damned happy about it. I rooted like hell for Cleveland this June, but as a ball fan, I’m allowed to change things up. And so are you.

All that has to matter, all that should matter is what you feel in your heart. And not for nothing, but if Mom is good with it, you’re doing just fine. Your career to this point has been a basketball life well lived. All that’s left for you to do is write the ending. So don’t worry about the critics and the clowns. You just keep doing what you’ve been doing all along.

Finish strong.