Monthly Archives: September 2010

Being the author of a declining online forum that focuses on a sub-culture in a small corner of an unpopular part of the world does not mean you don’t have to mow your own lawn. You would think so, but no.

I hate mowing the lawn, and I am also not good at it. When the job is finished I do not look over my work and admire my ability to bend nature to my geometric will. My lawn will look like a haircut done by your big sister with the bric-a-brac scissors. Any plants of asthetic value will be chewed and churned to mulch while the oak suckers and the smilac will flourish and continue their plan to tear the house down.

Let’s talk later.


Hands up, chin down

I visited a remarkable place this week in my travels. It is a boxing gym that works with inner city kids who are involved in gangs and gang culture. Although this will sound like a cliche from an 80’s movie the first thing I noticed was that while every building around the gym was tagged with graffiti, the gym was clean. The gym is a color-free zone where skin and set color are irrelevant and the only currency is hard work.

One of the coaches told me about being locked up when he was young, how week after week this guy from the gym would visit him, relentless in his message that he could help him be somebody else, somebody better. He said he resisted until he began to miss the dude when he didn’t come around, and he would think about what he had said. He described the moment that he just grabbed onto that message and that hope and said okay, I will do whatever you ask. That was years ago and now he is the coach, he is the one who is relentless.

216 adolescent boys and girls work out there. The coaches and trainers don’t ask a lot of questions about past as they are future-oriented people. The strategy is work out, do your homework, eat right. The walls are covered with pictures of their fighters, some of them amateur champions on their way to the pros. Everywhere you see their messages, “Elbows in, hands up, Chin down” and “Will you answer the bell?”

I think to myself, “I’m damn sure trying.”


Put on a happy face

Things are really looking up for me lately.

I caught the Atlanta airport shuttle on the first try. I have about 240 degree rotation in my arm. I could play a round of golf if I stick with the punch shot, and the punch is my best shot. Nobody stole my cruiser I left outside in the back yard. The new oil leak in the Gulf is like totally just a small one, and a bunch of troops are coming home from Iraq. I got 23 songs for $9.99 at Amazon dot com and I’m reading a pretty good book right now.

I can count my blessings that the country is only bitterly divided instead of rabidly divided, and the humdity has got to be down at least 4% since last week. FSU will open with a gimme against Samford Baptist College this weekend, and I have a job.

Things have rarely been this good.