Wednesday, November 26, 2008

On Athletics

It's a real shame that a small number of Hawkeye athletes have disgraced our good names with their (alleged) illegal sexual encounters. If it weren't for these mounting scandals, I would have nothing but the utmost respect and appreciation for the sportsmen and sportswomen who represent the black and gold. I pretty much love athletes altogether. I'm not one of those people who think they get too much attention or too much money, because I accept a fact that many jealous attackers do not: athletes (at least most of them) are larger than life. And no matter how much you argue, I will never shake the belief that athletes are not normal people.
They're just not. They are larger than life, and that's just how I like them. I don't like thinking of an Iowa football player as just a regular student like me; I like thinking of him as a monster who could rip my head off. Sports are just more fun that way.
That said, there are those few rare moments that can make us think that maybe, just maybe, athletes are ordinary people (capable of extraordinary things, let's not forget). Maybe one of these moments was when the paparazzi was following Tom Brady last year and asked him how both his ankle and his supermodel girlfriend Gisele Bundchen were doing. Maybe one of these times is captured in the Youtube clip of Charles Barkley's horrifically embarassing golf swing (you should check that out). Or maybe one of these moments happened when I saw Shonn Greene (the record-holder for most rushing yards in a single season for a Hawk) near the Old Capitol Mall last week.
There he was. Just chillin. And altho he looked normal in his baseball hat and hoodie, I knew that he was not. I knew this because I felt the same kind of excitement when I saw him that I did as a little kid getting ready to watch Michael Jordan on TV. Oh he acted normal enough, and so did I. I just shot him the casual head-nod and offered, "Good luck, congratulations." But this encounter considered, that man is not normal.
He is not normal because he just broke the record for most rushing yards in a single season by an Iowa Hawkeye. I am normal because I've played 3-on-3 pick-up basketball in my high school gymnasium everyday this break, and I'm so sore I can hardly fucking walk. So the next time you want to claim that athletes get too much money and they're good for nothing and they have huge egos, just you remember: they can do things you and I can't. And I wouldn't have it any other way.
Go Greene. Go Hawks. Outback or bust.

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