St John’s dropped another one Wednesday night, this time to #11 Xavier on the road. Once again it was a good game and once again that’s at this point all you can hope for. St John’s actually led with with seven minutes left and were within one at the five minute mark, at which point they ran out of gas: Xavier scored 11 straight to go up eight and that was that. Oh and seven isn’t pretty and last place is last place and you are what your record says you are. I get that. But if the record is all you see you’re missing a lot. You’re missing some marvelous individual effort – Ponds last game and Simon last night – and some mental toughness by an undermanned team that’s showing some amazing resiliency. If the season’s lost – and yeah it is and yeah that’s on Mullin – at least you can enjoy that. If enjoyment’s what you’re looking for. There’s a large contingent of SJ fans who aren’t looking for that. They don’t want to have fun. They just like to complain. I mean sure, there’s certainly a lot to complain about, but constant repetitive whining is deadly dull and pointless. Not to mention the ridiculous spectacle of a bunch of chubby clerks and middle managers who haven’t seen their own dicks in five years challenging Chris Mullin to resign to prove his manhood. News flash for those dopes. In the first place quitting is not a sign of manliness, quite the opposite. In the second, Mullin’s not going anywhere. He’s coach until he doesn’t want to be coach anymore and I suspect that every loss increases his resolve to stay and succeed. Whether he can is an open question, but to demand that he go gently into the good night is profoundly absurd. Pro. Foundly. And in the third if you think the vast knowledge of basketball you’ve gleaned coaching third grade girl’s CYO would aid Mullin in his understanding of Xs and Os and use of timeouts and when to employ the triangle and two, you should write it all down and send it to him, I’m sure he’d be grateful for the assistance … Simon, who I was assured this week would have a hard time cracking the starting rotation at Rhode Island, had 28 points, nine rebounds, six assists, three steals and only two turnovers in 38 minutes. Rhode Island must be very good. Ponds and Clark scored in double figures but Ponds needed a lot of shots to get his and I AM MARVIN CLARK had one rebound, as SJ once again got killed on the boards. Owens had seven points, six rebounds and four blocks, which would have been good had not some Turkish golem called Kerem Kanter lit him up for 22 and 13. Ahmed got pulled after a boneheaded defensive lapse and thereafter barely returned, which I appreciate Mullin trying to teach him a lesson, but the lesson could have been shorter. Trimble was the recipient of Ahmed’s minutes and once again I was relatively impressed. He made his threes and hit his free throws and didn’t otherwise embarrass himself. As opposed to Yakwe and Aliobegowitz … I’ve spent a bit of time this year kvetching about the referees but last nights crew – I don’t think I’ve ever seen them before – didn’t suck that badly. Xavier got the benefit of the doubt on a bunch of calls – as you’d expect the #11 team to on their home floor – but mostly things were even. I wasn’t pleased when Simon was given a technical for hanging on the rim five seconds into the game and was less pleased when JP Mascara – if there’s a dirtier more easily detestable player in the Big East him I’ve yet to see, he makes Grayson Allen look normal, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him bite someone – hung on the rim longer later and was called for bupkis. There was also an interesting turn when the refs first called a foul on Ahmed when he and JP got tangled under the basket and then after an interminable review to determine whether Ahmed’s foul was a flagrant one they waved the whole thing off, having decided that no foul had occurred. Oops, sorry. The sooner they get the refs off the floor and have them call the games from a sky box the better. … The game was on CBS, which meant (a) that I had to buy CBS Sports for the night, because evidently its a premium channel (b) that the game started at about 8:50 est, which is way past my liver’s bedtime and (c) that I had to watch things unfold in real time, meaning no fast forwarding through commercials or halftime, which on CBS is particularly awful, featuring as it does the unctuous Jon Rothstien, who has all the charm and wit of a Serbian sex trafficker. At least on Fox I get to hear stupid Steve Lavin do his Irwin Corey imitation
… AND NOW IT’S STORY TIME:
My mailbox got knocked over yesterday morning, the second straight year this’s happened. My house is situated on a county road towards the bottom of a hill that descends from the Rensselaer Plateau. The speed limit’s 30 but nobody does 30. Grandmas routinely do 45 and crazy people do 60. So anyway you come down the hill heading west and right before my house there’s a little jog south, 10 or maybe 15 degrees, but on snowy days like yesterday before the road’s been plowed it can be tricky to navigate. In both cases the driver was a young male in some crappy car (yesterday was an 89 Plymouth Horizon) going too fast who misses the turn, swerves to avoid the telephone pole left of the driveway, over corrects, turns sideways and slides over the mailbox and into the 100 year old silver maple on the front lawn. Contrary to my normal behavior – I can sometimes be pretty impatient believe it or not – I tend to take these things in stride. Because accidents happen. So we got young John’s car out of the culvert where it ended up and I got a crow bar and pried his right front fender back to where the car was driveable and sent young John on his way home to the other side of the river. It turned out he’d been visiting his boyfriend when the storm started and stayed the night and so was unfamiliar with the road. Young John gave me his number and said he’d be happy to pay for the damage but I expect I’ll never hear from him again. Here’s the scene of the crime.
I bring this up because just yesterday on a popular SJ fan forum someone brought up that very same mailbox. Which requires some slight back story. Now I frequent these fan forums and I’d be the first to tell you that I behave like an asshole. People call me a bully, but it’s not quite that. What it quite is is that I’m smarter than most people, and better educated, and better read, and write better, and let’s face it I’m pretty funny. So I don’t lose too many arguments and even when I do I get in a few good ones. But that’s not bullying. Like if we went bowling, and you beat me all the time, that doesn’t make you a bully, that just makes you a good bowler. My perspective is: if you don’t want me to point out that you said something stupid, stop saying stupid things. Some people take my behavior in stride. Oh they think, that’s just that dopey fun being dopey fun, and it’s water off a duck’s back. Some people though, being thick of skull and thin of skin, plan their revenge. One particular imbecile about a year ago – and mind you this is a grown ass man with a family and children and a job and a mortgage – decided that the proper response to sharp elbows thrown in the marketplace of ideas was to discover personal facts about me and post them in that forum – he doxed me, I think the kids call it. This particular imbecile figured out where I live – it’s not double naught spy stuff, you just need to go to whois – and went so far as to use a picture of my mailbox that he copied from google earth as his forum avatar. Which, whatever, I know where I live and so do a lot of other people and I’m in the phone book and Martindale Hubble and lawyers dot com and any number of places besides. The digital age has its benefits but privacy is not among them. However when this particular imbecile said something to the effect of ‘I know where your wife works’ I decided he was a sociopath. I mean good grief, my wife – besides being something of a looker – she’s a fucking saint. I don’t take veiled threats to her well being lightly and so I resolved to no longer truck with this particular pompous gasbag. Because only a psychopath responds to a little good-natured ribbing by what I took to be a threat to harm – or at least involve – my family.
Well just yesterday some other dope, let’s call him imbecile number two, in response to some innocuous comment I made about recruiting, said “Where’s that darn mailbox? Maybe, I should dig up the pic, bitch ass.” (Yes, he said bitch ass. Evidently I’m also a f’in punk.) The very same mailbox that was just hours earlier demolished! I mean what are the odds? What are the odds that imbecile number two was privy to my year ago intercourse with imbecile number one, remembered it, and responded with the same sort of petulant childish behavior involving my precious and newly defunct mail box. It’s like they’re the same person. Except I know they’re not, one guy, uses many, more commas, than the other, guy, and you can’t fake that sort of poor, syntax. Anyway I told that guy that I live at 91 Elliot Road in the Greenbush and he was welcome to come by any time although he should mind the Akitas, they’re pretty high strung and haven’t had much exercise since an unfortunate incident with a couple of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the fall. Should he I’ll be happy to extend to him the same courtesies I did to young Jonathan, up to and including using a crow bar should it come to that. You’re all invited as well. Happy hour starts around noon. I’ll supply the booze but you have to bring your own snacks.
The whole thing’s worth a listen but for those of you with short attention spans can skip ahead to the 1:30 mark