Friday, April 15, 2011

Here's to you Mr. Robinson

I grew up a fan of both civil rights and sports. Jackie Robinson became a Brooklyn Dodger in 1947 and in 1949 won the league MVP award. The following year, Cooper, Clifton and Lloyd joined the ranks of the modern NBA. Now, football was ahead in a way as there had pretty steadily been a few black players (although none between 1933 and 1946). George Taliaferro was drafted by the Bears in 1950. The NBA saw its first black head coach in 1966 when Bill Russell took over at the helm of the Celtics (losing that year to the great 76ers team). Baseball was a bit slower, with Frank Robinson becoming the first major league manager (of the Cleveland Indians) in 1974 (while he was still playing). Football took until 1989, which the entire NFL should be deeply embarrassed by, to see Art Shell as the first head coach (of the Oakland Raiders, apparently Al Davis is capable of doing something right). The first NFL quarterback was Marlin Brisco, a 14th round pick for the Denver Broncos in 1968. I remember seeing him play. My favorite baseball player was always Willie Mays and I devoured books about his upbringing (in a time when there were not black players in the major leagues)and subsequent success.

I am surprised and appalled that now, all these years later, people can still consider race when they consider the success of Donovan McNabb as a quarterback or Herm Edwards as a coach. I don't get the same sense in baseball and basketball, although I know there is concern about how players born in the Dominican Republic are treated by major league baseball. Still, I would like to think that sports has played a role in showing us the way to equality and teamwork despite race. If you haven't, watch the movie, "Remember the Titans" Read the book, "Double Play" by Robert Parker and then cheer for your favorite team without any concern about the race of those you are cheering.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

the morning cuppa

Those who know me well (and many who don't know me that well) know that my morning starts with Earl Grey tea - hot (to quote Captain Jean Luc Picard. Love being able to quote Star Trek) regardless of temperature. It doesn't really matter what brand of Earl Grey, but it must be Earl Grey. My current favorites are the Two Leaves and A Bud (available at Saxby's including in 30th Street Station Philadelphia) and Numi (conveniently available at the coffee stand in my office building). But it *must* be Earl Grey. Yes, I do carry around Earl Grey tea bags just in case the spot where I find myself in the morning doesn't have Earl Grey, as happened this morning at (or in case they have run out, which I've even experienced at Starbucks) Great food, no Earl Grey (well there was Earl Grey made with their hot water and my tea bag). I'm happy to pay for the tea, heck I'm happy to pay for the hot water, but if wherever I am has Earl Grey, I will just buy theirs, not use my own, although at work, any cup after the first is made with teabags kept in my office. There is just some luxury about being handed that first cup of tea (Earl Grey tea that is) in the morning that gets the day off to the right start.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Let's face it. People aren't very good at returning calls these days. If you don't have something they want right then, often times the calls take a back seat to the more pressing matters at hand. Article Source:

I wouldn't have thought this prevalent, until this week. I'm waiting for call backs from 2 equine dentists (3 days and 2 days) in the hopes of getting Tag's wolf tooth out. I want to pay these guys to do work for me and no call back. I'm waiting for a call back from the Radiology Department (6 days) to schedule the MRI on my stress fracture. I have a referral from my primary care physician and from the sports medicine orthopedic surgeon, but no call back. I'm waiting for the swimming instructor (one week) from the Sporting Club to call me about swimming lessons. Once again, I want to pay for a service, but can't arrange it without the call back.

Are people just too busy in this world of increasing technology and contact points? Is my business so minor in the scheme of things that they just don't care? Have people become so addicted to texting and email that they no longer no how to use the phone (and by the way, other than the radiology departments, they have my cell numbers and I'd be happy for a text).

I think I'll make a bunch more phone calls and see if anyone calls back.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Small in the end

Turns out Tag has a very ouchy blind wolf tooth that our vet thinks is the root (pun inintended, but noted) of his issues. She did a very thorogh evaluation and is fairly certain there is nothing more major going on, so one dental visit being scheduled. I am excited to see Caitlin start working with him. I'm betting she will bring out his capabilities. I think he is going to be a really impressive dressage horse with a bit more time and help from someone much better at it it than I am. So look for updates.