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Living in the moment, While We’re Waiting

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Happy Tuesday, WFNY!

For those of you lucky enough to work someplace that recognizes federal holidays, welcome back to work. For the rest of you, like me, well, welcome to Tuesday. We’re one day closer to the weekend than we were yesterday, so, hooray progress!

With all the sarcasm I can muster, I’d just like to start off by saying what a phenomenal NBA All-Star Game we just had! Stuff….happened. Buckets were had, points were scored. Taking off my sarcasm hat and putting on my basketball fan hat, I seriously don’t understand how anyone enjoys the NBA All-Star Game. It’s a mockery of my favorite sport and it’s so boring to me watching players just stand around, going through the motions. It’s like watching a televised shootaround, basically. If you like it, more power to you. I’m happy you had something fun to watch on a Sunday night. Me? I made it through the first half before I had to find a more productive way to spend my time.

But the All-Star break is nice for a couple reasons. For one thing, it gives us all a chance to take a breather in the middle of the season. It’s great for the players and for the reporters and broadcasters who travel all over the country with these teams. It’s also nice for people who just stay up past their bedtime writing post-game thoughts for an independent sports site like this one. It’s just nice to have a week off to reenergize and collect some thoughts before the push toward the real season, the postseason, begins.

I’ve been using this week off to really reflect on this team and trying to live more in the moment. I was listening to the Road Trippin’ podcast over the weekend as Kyrie Irving tried to explain that the earth is flat, and I was just enthralled by it. Maybe it was the sleep-hazed delirium of the flu that I was going through, but I really got to thinking about how special this Cleveland Cavaliers team is.

It’s easy to take them for granted, even just eight months after they delivered Cleveland its first Championship since 1948. Sure, the games are fun to watch. It’s great to have three amazing players like LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Love to root for. But how often do we really step back to think just how amazing and special this moment in time is? Or, more specifically, how lucky we all are to live in a time when this specific group of players were brought together to play for the team we root for.

We all knew, more or less, how close this team is. We’ve been reading post-Championship stories galore on the bond this team has, how LeBron is the ultimate camaraderie guy, how Channing Frye worked to make these players realize how special this team is and brought everyone together, how Richard Jefferson’s use of “Lil Kev” was a rallying moment for the team, how James Jones put together the Larry O’Brien Trophy puzzle the team assembled as they made their march to the title. But the Road Trippin’ podcast has been an absolute revelation for me.

It’s honestly the most unguarded, down to earth, and casual conversation I have ever heard NBA players talk. It feels less like listening to a podcast and more like sitting at the table with the players as they have dinner together. It’s an invitation into their real lives in a way we so rarely get as sports fans. Whether it’s Bill Walton talking about Luke Walton’s friends, including Richard Jefferson, spending countless nights at the Walton household where there apparently are beds just all over the place, or LeBron James talking about how grateful he is to have Kyrie around so Kyrie can be LeBron’s kids’ basketball hero allowing LeBron to just be “dad” to them, or Kevin Love talking about his middle kid syndrome growing up, or Tristan Thompson relating the story of how he actually met Khloe Kardashian, the entire podcast is a giant introspection of the team dynamic.

We’ve learned more about Richard Jefferson and the fascinating journey he has had in his basketball life and we’ve learned more about Channing Frye’s infatuation with talking about fast food restaurants. We get to know the players for more than just what they do on the court as basketball players. We get to know them for the people that they are.

It’s funny, you know? If DeAndre Jordan doesn’t renege on his verbal agreement to sign with the Dallas Mavericks, RJ never becomes a Cavalier. Cleveland very well might have still gone on to win the NBA Championship. But I’m not sure the team would be as much fun. When the Cavaliers signed RJ, I’ll admit, I didn’t think much of it. I figured he was just a guy who would get a few minutes here and there. I didn’t expect him to play an important role in the NBA Finals. But more importantly, I didn’t realize what RJ would bring to the team off the court.

It started, really, with the Snapchat account. Lil Kev, he was called. It was must-see entertainment. Not only was it just genuinely funny, but we started to learn more about the team through it. We knew when the team was having dinner together, or hanging out at someone’s house. We knew all this because Lil Kev was there. From there, we got RJ’s post-game segments with Fred McLeod on Fox Sports Ohio broadcasts called “Was It Something I Said?” where we get to see more of the team dynamic and personality. Now we have the podcast.

I can’t say RJ was the most important signing in recent years (I think LeBron James has a pretty firm grasp on that title), but he’s been perhaps the most important acquisition in terms of my overall enjoyment of the team.

I love basketball. I find so much enjoyment in simply watching the best in the world play this game. So I don’t need all the off-the-court stuff to enjoy this team. Watching them win games and play in NBA Finals, and bringing home that Championship is more than enough. But in Kyrie’s last appearance on the podcast, he talked about how he wants to be known for so much more than just being a basketball player. In the same vein, I enjoy getting to know more about these players beyond just what they do on the court. It allows me to better live in the moment.

There’s going to come a time in the near future when LeBron James is no longer the same dominant force. I don’t want that time to come and for me to have regrets about not enjoying this team more in the moment. We are so, so lucky to have this specific team, these specific players, on “our” team. So while it’s frustrating to go through so many injuries like they’ve had this year, and it’s annoying when they go through a losing January, and it’s maddening when they don’t play defense as hard as we think they should or they don’t pass the ball around as much as we wish they would, it’s important to just remember how lucky we are.

The four years the team spent in the LeBron-less wilderness feel like a blur now. But it was not fun in that moment. The way things played out, I wouldn’t change any of it for the world. But I think those four years have made it easier to simply enjoy this team for what they are. I desperately want them to win more Championships. I hope they do. I hope they repeat this year. But the Golden State Warriors are awfully formidable. And if the Cavs lose, it will suck. But it’s ok because we’re still lucky. We still get to watch LeBron and Kyrie and Kevin play night in and night out. We got to celebrate a Championship. And this team is full of really fascinating personalities and we’re fortunate enough to have several platforms through which we can learn more about them.

So with the playoffs right around the corner, and the stress that is going to come with that, I’m just trying to hang on to this moment. I’m enjoying every episode of the podcast, every game, every swing of momentum. This is basketball, and it’s awesome. And it’s only that much better when you have a group of players that are this much fun to root for.

You know what? I’ve had enough of this All-Star break. I’m ready for Thursday when the team is back on the floor. I’m ready to just enjoy whatever the rest of this season has in store for us.

  • BenRM

    I still can’t understand how KI doubled down on the flat earth thing. Like…I really want it to be hardcore commitment to a joke…but I know he’s serious.

  • NankirPhelge

    As for All-Star games, I hope MLB doesn’t follow suit and we start seeing outfielders loafing after doubles and turning them into triples and infielders bailing on DPs because they’re too much work and they might get hurt.

    I’m offended a little by the suggestion that maybe the players would take All-Star games more seriously and make them more competitive if they paid players more. That’s insulting to the fans. Besides, I don’t think it would make any difference. And besides besides, how much more money do these guys need?

  • JM85

    The 3 point contest was the only entertaining thing all weekend and it was mostly due to Kyrie being in it.

  • BenRM

    If you work at McDonald’s, and you get employee of the month, should you be expected show up for “Employee of the Month Day” and work a shift for free?

    These dudes are all rich beyond imagination, but it’s still their job.

  • mgbode

    NFL is getting better with All-Star type things as they have gone to more the old school “ProBowl week” with activities ranging from Dodgeball to obstacle courses. My personal thought is this should be the only thing they do.

  • RGB

    The All-Star game was this weekend?

  • JM85

    Dodgeball was very entertaining.

  • Hopwin

    It is just a matter of time before the MLB game becomes this. Now that there is no incentive to win why would a player risk injury by throwing 96 mph or diving for a catch?

  • JNeids

    Don’t know that you’ve made an apples-to-apples, and not just because of the pay scale. Yes, All Star Weekend COULD be a weekend off, but the players SHOULD be honored to be there. But as we’re seeing in college football, nobody wants to do anything anymore without proper (read: monetary) incentive.

  • Garry_Owen

    I didn’t hear any of the actual conversation/interview, but I read the re-cap of it. The only thing that I could think was that Kyrie was saying, in a really weird fashion, “I don’t take anything at face value, and question everything anyone says I should believe,” using the earth as just an extreme illustration. Any chance that this is what he was doing? I really hope so.

  • mgbode

    I want to see a pitcher go fastpitch softball with it. If the game is an exhibition again, then they should treat it like a Harlem Globetrotter’s game and just have fun with it.

  • BenRM

    But the honor means you don’t get your vacation. And not only are you working through your vacation, you aren’t getting paid for it.

    I just don’t think you can have a competitive game without incentive to be competitive.

  • maxfnmloans

    Hes not serious. It is a meta-commentary on “fake news”

  • JNeids

    Athletes are not hourly, so yes they are still getting paid. They’re just not getting paid MORE, which is what they keep asking for. They are getting paid ungodly amounts to play a game, and while that in and of itself should not preclude them from working when they might otherwise have time off, if the honor of getting voted in is not enough anymore, then they have the option of turning it down. However, they know that turning down an ASG invite would be damaging to their reputation (read: marketability).

    Not to mention, how many other players that didn’t get voted in make the trip? That’s because the whole weekend is one big party. One more reason I don’t feel bad at all.

    As for the competitiveness of the game, no clue how to fix that. Home field/court advantage is a terrible idea. But so is paying them more. If a sponsor wants to put up a prize for the winning team, then fine. But athletes do not need to be paid more for anything, especially playing in a game that should be an honor.

  • nika

    the earth is flat. you wouldn’t know it if you’ve never looked into the reasons. everybody starts out assuming it must be a prank. but if you do the research — you’ll have the most amazing paradigm shift of your life. google “flat earth” choose a few of the literally millions of youtube videos, watch with an open mind. understand the arguments — understand what this is all about.

  • nika

    the earth is flat. literally. for realz . you are standing on solid, not spinning flat ground. you are conditioned to think that’s ridiculous. yet it’s the actuality. watch some flat earth videos get an insight on the evidence, people are not making this profound claim because they enjoy the backlash — they are saying it because the truth is so profound they are willing to endure the backlash to speak truth.

  • nika

    the earth is flat. no meta. no commentary. no irony. flat. earth. is. the reality. they can show you all the globes the want — does not change the shape of the ground we stand on. only changes your ability to observe it. try to prove otherwise.

  • nika

    for anybody befuddled by why Kyrie would say the earth is flat — you can cure your befuddlement by actually doing a few hours of research. override your certainly there is nothing to see here — and look anyway. google “flat earth” choose several of literally millions of youtube flat earth videos outlining evidence for the arguments — watch — and learn why people genuinely believe the earth is flat. pff — in a few hours befuddlement gone! and you get to go on an incredible journey of discovery to boot.

  • BenRM
  • Hopwin
  • WFNY_DP

    Nope. I watched a couple and read copious amounts of comments. All it made me feel was sad. Sad that so many people think they’re being intellectual because they can tie a go-pro to a weather balloon but have never cracked a physics or a geometry book in their lives.

  • nika

    Serious. sincere. bottom of my heart, I started looking into flat earth questions back in 2015. at first sure it must be satire but they made enough good points to peak my interest, for about 9 months kept thinking about it. going through all sorts of math. calling science centers asking questions. finally realizing. wow. we can not be on a spinning ball. I don’t know where we are. i don’t know what it means. but, we are not on a spinning ball/ and it’s amazing to have realized in my lifetime. I could have easily lived and died never realizing we are not on a spinning b all earth.had I not first looked into it despite feeling sure there was no legit reason to look.

  • nika

    it’s not a contest about feeling smart. people with all ranges of education are realizing the globe model doesn’t make sense. just as people with all ranges of education are sure there is nothing to it.

    but geometry and physics are a big part of how you can prove we are not on a spinning ball. geometry tells up how much a ball must curve to form a sphere the size of earth given it’s circumference, 8 inches per mile squared. all over the world, in hawaii, spain, morocco, chicago sky line, etc, people are taking photographs with zoom lenses seeing much much farther than they should be able to see given the curvature dictated by geometry. this is itself is a huge problem and a reason to question further. — physics is also a good thing to apply for many reasons — one of them being that force does no dissipate without counter force. if we are spinning with a circumference of 24000 miles, the surface of equator must spin at 1000 mph a day to make one full rotation. but any other area of the earth must on the surface spin at a slower rate to make one full rotation per day and more at one solid object, up near the poles the earth must be spinning at near zero mph. they say you can’t feel the spin of the earth because it is constant — but in the copernican model the spin is not constant from one pat of the earth to another, if you travel from mexico to alaska for example you have to counter a force of ~ 800 mph ( the speed of sound) . pilots don’t do that. the ocean water doesn’t demonstrate that shift, there is no evidence whatsoever the surface of the earth os spinning at various speeds, much less spinning at all.

  • WFNY_DP

    If I’m sitting next to my wife in the car going 70 MPH, I don’t have to fight through a head wind inside the car to reach over and touch her arm. THEREFORE WE MUST NOT BE MOVING!

    Doesn’t that sound absurd?

  • nika

    that’s exactly it. once you get to a constant speed. you don’t feel anything. that’s the argument for why we don’t feel the earth spin, — however when you take an exit off the freeway. you will both feel the difference,. you will feel you are sowing down/ you will lean forward a little. then when you regulate your speed on a surface street you will feel nothing again. but it’s that exit ramp feeling of adjustment to chance in speed we should all be experiencing as we travel from wider part of the earth to more near poles, on a massive scale. but it’s actually not detectible at all.

  • WFNY_DP

    Sigh.

    Google “Coriolis effect”. Also google “sarcasm”.

    If the earth is flat, why do different constellations appear in the southern hemisphere, rotating in an opposite direction?
    Why does the moon change positions in the sky, change times of visibility, and change phases?
    Why does the ISS send back images showing a globe?
    Why does the video Felix Baumgartner took of himself jumping out of his low-earth-orbit capsule and free-falling clearly show a globed earth in the background?
    Are you calling John Glenn a liar?

    etc.

  • WFNY_DP

    For example, you said above: “pilots don’t do that” in relation to fighting a force.

    Actually, they do, in the form of wind. This is a good read:
    https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/the-coriolis-effect-and-air-travel.705337/

  • nika

    coriolis effect doesn’t prove we are on a ball spinning. in fact coriolis effect is never used by navy firing missiles. you can listen to hours of interview by navy millild experts talking about realizing earth is flat, and how they never use coriolis effect calculations. along with all sort of other interesting info he realized in his work, google “US navy missile instructor confirms flat earth”

    I was a teen in 90’s I knew sarcasm before there was google.

    stars are low and close. imagine you are in a huge stadiium , several city streets wide, with relatively low ceiling. when you look uo — you don’t see what the people on other side of stadium see when they look up. and if ceiling is rotating. you will see same things at different times but never at same time.

    google flat earth model and constellations for visual demonstrations.

    moomn remains a mystery, however our current explanation is deeply problematic. I don’t know why the moon does what it does — but I know it’s not reflecting sunlight because moonlight is cool. and encourages bacteria growth while sunlight is hot and kills bacteria. that’s not explained currently, also we awls see exact same face of moon. never a fraction of a rotation from out vantage from anywhere on earth. this strongly brings into question — if it might actually be a disc of light, not a sphere, maybe. but whatever the moon is — I’d say the answers we have so far are not right.

    felix used fish eye lens, this is easy to prove because in his footage the arc sometimes flips upside down making the horizon look like a bowl. it’s the lens. if you watch the beginning of the felix footage — the horizon looks flat when they are still inside capsule. not proof — but reason to realize — it’s the lens distorting the footage otherwise.

    I’m not actively calling John glenn a liar, I highly doubt he’s the mastermind behind faking the moon landing. I’dcall him an actor perhaps. but much more importantly — the moon landings were faked, yes. 100 percent, and the evidence for that is all over the web. so much. the documentary a funny thing happened on the way to the moon is a good starting point.

    ISS is pretend. they shoot that stuff on a sound stage or a zero g plane, and when they go outside the shoot underwater to make it look like space, it’s all theatrical tricks. there is also tons of stuff you can watch pointing out all the green screen and other tricks they use to produce iss segments. — but a good starting point os try to figure out how they got those super bowl jerseys up there . there were no recorded shipments since after they knew who was going to the super bowl. it’s all just silliness when you start to really look. just takes daring yourself to look more closely,

  • WFNY_DP

    OK, this last, long post shows me you don’t wish to be taken seriously.

    “ISS is pretend”.

    http://www.collectspace.com/news/news-020417a-super-bowl-jerseys-space.html
    THEY LITERALLY LAUNCHED ALL 32 JERSEYS INTO SPACE.

    Have fun, man.

  • mgbode

    I have one big question from this thread that I am not sure how anyone from either side can answer.

    Why did NASA bother sending a Browns jersey up?

  • nika

    haha. the key question that will lead to greatest mystery ever,

  • nika

    that video was posted three weeks ago to imply the shipment came much earlier. even if it were stated when it arrived, which it wasn’t — it wouldn’t matter. … it’s not evidence, it’s just theater. & a lame attempt to cover their asses.

  • WFNY_DP

    I noticed the Browns jersey was the first one visible in the video. They apparently thought the HBT was spending all that cap space.

  • mgbode

    Or they had to wait for that $10,000 shipping charge to be approved just to include a Browns jersey, so it was the last jersey put in the box.

  • WFNY_DP

    [Edit] Sorry, I’m deleting this. I’m arguing with either a sophisticated trolling system, or a brick wall. Neither has any long-term benefit.

    /Fin

  • nika

    I don’t claim to know, there are a lot of theories on those important questions. some people think there is more land and we are captives in a small part of what the world really is. some people think it’a about keeping the way we can extract free energy a secret, and making us dependent on a limited resource system that is fabricated. but there are a lot of theories. I don’t know what is the real reason.

    I do know that deception is common place as a means for one party to exert power over another. Consider colonialism or even the microcosm of a cult — a leader or leading party will teach people to believe lies and in this way they can control those people and extract the labor and resources and compliance they want from those people, without the people ever realizing they should want something else. I suspect something along those lines is happening — but we are so deeply in the social conditioning — even realizing some things are fake — it’s still too blury to see the big picture and how deep the lies go and to what end. and for what purpose, short term and long term. but it is very possible for a huge population to live under deception and not realize it. we learn about this happening throughout history. people believed in gods, or mythology as if it was truth. only in retrospect do we consider they were living in illusion. we look at north korea and we think only that extreme form of isolation can keep people so brainwashed — but perhaps we hear stores about them so much to boost our egoes and keep our pride up to believe we can never be fooled ourselves. but we are ourselves also living under a fog of misinformation.

    as for how they can pull it off — a monopoly on printing the school books and publishing media already exists. and the tactics of tricks of camera and acting is really not hard to use you just need to want to use them. the ability to trick in this way already exists, it’s the unclear motive that makes it so hard to fathom. but that doesn’t mean it’s not happening. surely whatever the motive really is – is part of what they are working so hard to keep us from realizing,

  • nika