First things first. Merry Christmas to all. And a bunch of thank yous are in order. I once again thank my editor, one Jeff Kuehn, for giving me this venue to rant in a few years back. No doubt there have been times when he regretted it due to my many foibles, but he's hung with me throughout. Merry Christmas boss, wherever you are.
I thank my friends for being -- well -- who they are. Most people need someone to lean on once in a while and yours truly is no exception. Thanks for all the laughs, hugs, bad jokes, other banter, favors traded, occasional shared tears, and even the rarer disagreements. Add it all up and I wouldn't trade it for anything.
For whatever reasons, my family pretty much scattered to the winds long ago, but I thank them for what we once had.
I thank the readers of my rants. Some I know, most I don't. And a special thanks to any that have taken the time to comment -- good or bad -- on my various rants in this venue. I really do try to keep things light, and spoof myself as much as any other person or entity in the sports world. But I know there are times when my words can be quite sharp -- even caustic. I get that. Yet there are times people and things deserve to be ripped -- in my opinion.
The name of this blog -- The Wrath of John -- actually came about as a play on words regarding the old Star Trek movie The Wrath of Khan. It was likely a poor choice on my part, but it's way too late in the game to change it now. Nevertheless, it hardly meant or means I'm pissed all the time. Nothing could be further from the truth. The above-mentioned friends know this. In truth, I can't actually remember the last time I got truly mad at somebody. Life's too short, bad stuff happens sometimes, and getting all torqued out of shape only raises your blood pressure while resolving nothing else. True, it took a few decades for my feeble brain to figure this out, but I thank the Lord for letting me hang around long enough to finally see the light. Amen, indeed.
With apologies to the late Jimmy Stewart in his classic movie portrayal -- all in all - mine has been a wonderful life indeed. So many people and things to give thanks for.
[Speaking of bad versus good -- just when you think all is lost with Shaq doing those moronic body powder commercials and Sammy Jack resurrecting his "what's in your wallet" credit card carnival barking, along comes Santa Claus and LA Clipper Deandre Jordan to playfully snipe at each other over their prowess on the hard court. Very yuk-worthy stuff. Ho ho ho. ]
Alas, there is a bah humbug. Though the much awaited mini rematch between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors will happen on Christmas day, one Lebron James is not happy. He doesn't like to play on Christmas.
Well then, let's see. Mr. James is making somewhere in the neighborhood of $25 million this one year to play basketball. This is likely more money than you, your family, and close friends will cumulatively make in their entire lifetimes. Put another way, over the course of the 82 game NBA season, LJ is making roughly $300,000 dollars -- PER GAME. Win, lose, light it up, or stink it up, James is going to haul down more money for each two hour job shift than you likely make slaving away for 40-50 hours a week over the course of 5-6 YEARS.
Plus he's got a lifetime guaranteed shoe contract that pays him at least an extra $10,000,000 every year. This is not even to mention his other array of endorsement cha-chings. Nor does it count the big playoffs bucks when those games start happening next spring. He gets to fly first class and stay in 5-star hotels -- FREE. Every little whim he might have is instantly catered to. Also gratis. All in all, James is probably knocking down $50M a year while living in the lap of luxury. This is because he is better than most at finding ways to put a ball in a basket, or keeping his opponents from doing so.
[Hmm. Maybe there was something to that Wrath of John thing after all. I'm starting to get a little stoked here over the absurdity of it all.]
Regardless, the poor, abused dear is whining about having to play a basketball game on Christmas day.
To which I say BAH HUMBUG. That means you Lebron Raymone James. How about you suck it up, shut it up, and go out to Oakland for another ass-whipping on national TV? Bet if you and the Cavs were playing at home against the woeful 76ers on Christmas, where your team could romp, your tune would be quite different.
Who does this guy think he's kidding? There's over seven BILLION people on the planet earth that wished they had HIS little problem.
But in the end, no matter what, here's wishing a Merry Christmas to one and all out there. And if you're reading this, yet another thank you.