Category Archives: Sports

Trump Wins!

After 108 years, the Chicago Cubs have finally won the World Series!  And the first seal of the Trumpocalypse has been opened.  Actually, it may be the third or fourth seal.  Wikileaks and the FBI need to be thrown in there somewhere too, I think.

Growing up, I was a huge Cubs fan.  This was complicated slightly by the fact that I also lived on the South Side.  And while it’s true that my friends and I went to many more Sox games than Cubs games growing up, thanks to the Sox basically giving away tickets, we were, at heart, Cubs fans all the way.  We would watch every game we could.  I recall senior year in high school, my best friend had a van with a tiny black and white TV in the back and we both got out after 8th period but would wait in the parking lot in the back of that van watching the Cubs play until our brothers got out after 9th period.  We would play baseball almost daily during the summer.  I was known for my outstanding skills in the outfield.  I remember a black kid that played with us once telling me that I played just like Andre Dawson when I just wanted to be compared to Andy Van Slyke.  Good times.

As I grew older, I slowly withdrew from baseball.  There was still nothing like going to see the Cubs play at Wrigley Field, but my interests turned to other thing and gone were the days of my being able to name every starting lineup and rattle off statistics of who batted what in 1987, though the latter is more because of my obsession with the Earl Weaver Baseball video game in which my friends and I would play entire seasons against each other and my lead off hitter was Vince Coleman who hit .405 for me with 45 home runs and 80 stolen bases.

I can still talk baseball, but I couldn’t even name the Cubs starting lineup at the beginning of this season.  Needless to say, besides knowing that the Cubs had a young team and that Theo Epstein had done a good job putting a talented team together and that Joe Maddon was an unbelievable manager, I didn’t follow the Cubs too closely this year besides going to a couple games and getting regular updates from my mom and brother who have managed to keep the obsession.  That changed when the Cubs made it past the Division Championship.  I started watching games again and I have to say, the Cubs team is just electric.  They are talented, young, and just the right amount of brash.  And, boy, they are a hell of a lot of fun to watch.

Game seven of the World Series was one of the most exciting games I have ever watched.  It was a roller coaster of emotion, going from cool confidence that the Cubs have got this to pacing back and forth when the Indians tied it up, then to relief as the Cubs pulled ahead again, and back to nail biting agony as it gets tied up once again to go into extra innings.  Then, finally, in the 10th the Cubs pull ahead and make the bottom of the 10th one of the most harrowing sports experiences you will ever come across before finally winning.  And Chicago goes wild.

I wasn’t part of the over 300,000 people that descended upon Wrigley Field after the Cubs victory.  I was a mile away, sitting at home, listening to the celebrations that were going on all around me.  The cheering lasted well into the 1:00 hour.  Raucous, but mostly peaceful.  Chicago has a history of over-celebrating their victories, but that didn’t happen this time.  Kudos to the residents and the police for showing the world how it’s done.

Now, a new day dawns and the Eamus Catuli sign resets to AC00000000.  People are calling off of work and Starbucks is serving a few more hangover cures than usual.  Do the Cubs have the makings of a dynasty?  I think yes.  Regardless, their team sure makes baseball a whole lot more interesting.

And if the Cubs’ win portents a Trump presidency so be it.  At least Chicago got to see the Cubs win the World Series before Trump accidentally glasses over the city with a nuclear bomb.

I Want To Start My Own Professional Basketball League

This idea has been rolling around in my mind for a while now and I figured I better write it down before it disappears into the chasms of my mind.  The American mind spends an inordinate amount of time thinking about sports much to the detriment of much more important topics that are far more pertinent to our lives.  That said, professional sports have also been a positive impetus for social change.  Jackie Robinson is a great example of this.  Michael Sam, though he’s not on an NFL team yet, has also brought the echoes of change that will likely lead to the avalanche of openly gay men playing professional football.

I have many issues with professional sports, but the one that has always made no sense to me was that they were divided by gender.  I have no issues with the fact that there is a men’s league and a women’s league, but I do have issue with the fact that that is all we have.  The States are abound with coed recreational leagues so why not professional?  But to me, that doesn’t go far enough because it perpetuates the belief that gender is binary.  What I would like to see is the GNBA: the Gender Neutral Basketball Association.

The rules of the GNBA will follow most of the rules of any professional basketball association with one main difference: everybody is eligible.  Of course, that’s not enough as it would likely just turn into another men’s league so there will be two other rules.  First, the team that is on the court has to be gender neutral + 1.  Second, no individual player can be responsible for over 25% of the scored points.

Gender neutral + 1 probably needs a bit of an explanation.  There are five people on the basketball court at any given time.  Having one self-identifying male and one self-identifying female on the court makes the team gender neutral.  The +1 gives some wiggle room since it is a five person team.  So you can have 3 women and 2 men on the court or 2 trans women and 3 trans men or 1 man and 1 woman and 1 trans man and 1 trans woman and 1 bigender individual, etc.  Importantly, each individual would be self-identifying with no questions asked.  Also, this is not meant to be an exhaustive list of identities or combinations.  Gender identity is vast and complicated and I only have an 8th grade education in it.

No individual player being responsible for more than 25% of the points is an effort to curb the superstar effect that basketball seems to have.  It is there to emphasize team play over individual ego.  If an individual has over 25% of the points at the end of the game, points will be deducted from that individual’s total until they have 25% or fewer points.  This is a rule that I wish the NBA currently had.

Why did I choose basketball?  Practicality, mostly.  Both soccer and baseball would be well suited to a league of this nature too and I like both sports better, but they both require much larger spaces and more players.  Basketball courts are ubiquitous, scale well to attendance levels, and require less person-power.

The biggest obstacle to gender awareness right now is visibility.  We are brought up with a binary view of gender since birth.  This can cause huge emotional damage in those who do not fit that socially enforced binary.  Creating an all-inclusive basketball league will certainly not solve all our gender problems, but it’s a way to bring positive visibility to a portion of the population that remains too invisible to society.


This may be the best goal I have ever seen.  It has been nominated as such for FIFA’s best goal of the year.  The match?  Irish Woman’s National Team vs. Wexmouth Youths.  The attendance? Sub-100.  The goal scorer?  Stephanie Roche.  Girl got game.