“The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness….” Romans 1:18.
For those Bible readers that say Revelation is the scariest book in the Bible, check Romans out. It is one of the books I read the most and that verse is the one I try to always remember. If you read on, you would read it goes on to say God’s wonders have been demonstrated in plain view since the beginning of time so men, we, are without excuse. I personally get so tired of that statement, “game recognizes game” because it’s so true and it doesn’t comfort me. That statement offers me no solace for the simple fact that it only serves as a catalyst to perturb me in an area I’d much rather ignore. The truth is “Game” does recognize game and “Game” does all it can to suppress, ignore or utterly decimate it.
I love that word. Decimate. You know where it comes from? It’s Latin from “deci” meaning “ten” and “mate” meaning kill. If Caesar’s army, men or what have you would lose a battle, fight or all in all mess up, he would order something passed gangster. He’d order 10 men from his army bound and gagged in public view and, you guessed it, slaughtered. Just to get his point across to the rest that he wasn’t in business for tolerance of failure. All these little Latin barbs I know are thanks to Latin classes I had while growing up in Catholic school. Actually made the English portion of the SAT a turkey shoot.
It’s very difficult to play overseas and be exposed to so many things that you simply would never hear while confined in your little box at home in the States or anywhere else for that matter. Can you imagine the people and his/her revelation when they notice a world outside of the little box in his/her mind? I’ve gone through it and am going though it still. It wouldn’t be so difficult to play if I weren’t so damn “peculiar” as I’ve been referred to here. But as it is, I notice and analyze way too much.
On the way back from one of our Euroleague games where we smashed Aris in Thessaloniki, Igor Rakocevic handed me a Serbian (I don’t know if it was Serbian or Croatian or Bosnian or which one of the six former Yugoslavian states, so I beg you pardon if I’m wrong) newspaper that offered a very different point of view from a former Yugoslavian leader. His word were not bad mouthing America but rather a hesitant confession of what America forced him to do. What?! I read this and I don’t know what fascinated me more, the fact American powers really might have forced this man to do what he claims, or the fact we in America have never heard these extremely damning accusations! Not really that particular story I want to dwell on but rather one example.
Another is this one… Hillary/Obama. I swear, man. I mean, come on. How hard is it to take important caca seriously? It’s damn near impossible. One day reports are going out all over the newswire. “Obama is killing Hilary”, “He’s looking to sweep Ohio and Texas,” the media even suggesting Hilary might just drop out of the race. So much so Mrs. Clinton had to speak on it and say she wasn’t dropping out. And for my almost 20 years of being interested in elections, every single time the media has talked about someone dropping out of a political race… Stick a fork in him (her). Well, not only did Hilary not drop out, she won Texas and Ohio! WTF?!
Picture my boy calling me and in our casual convo he just mention he was just getting back from voting. As I was congratulating him on doing what he had never done before, he cut me off and said he never got a chance to. Why? (If it weren’t such a shame, I’d be laughing). They announced Hillary won to a multitude waiting in line to vote at Nimitz High School (a mostly Bantu area of Houston) with plenty of time to spare before polls closed. This is comical.
Or how about this? I’ve like found so much similarities between Africa and, well, everywhere it’s crazy. China, I learned, has many different ethnicities and languages just as every country in Africa. But I never expected it in Spain! I thought everyone in Spain was Spanish. I guess my first stint here I was too consumed with a pregnant wife and a wanting bank account to notice.
There are at least four ethnicities/languages/people whatever you want, other than Spanish in Spain. And these people are damn proud of that. There is Catalan (kinda of a Spanish-French melange), Gaello (ummm, Spanish-Portuguese), another I don’t know the name of but it is in Menorca, and the most interesting, the Basque. The city I play in is the capital of Basque country, Vitoria. But in Euskera, Vitoria is Gasteiz. And that is just one example. I take pride in being able to somewhat decipher different languages but I am telling you, I could not explain or decipher the incredible history or language of these people. To even begin would take up this blog and every other one from this point out. Euskera has absolutely no similarities to Spanish. None. No one knows exactly where it came from. Linguists cannot agree from where their language emerges. Some historians have even said they might be the survivors of Ancient Atlantis. Basques have been traced… Ready for this… Back to the days of Cromagnon! That is the days of cavemen, my friends. OK, I can’t be the only one tripping on this. But here’s the point. Nobody really recognizes their game. I read maybe one line about the Basque in History classes in the US growing up. And the French Government apparently doesn’t even recognize them as an ethnic group/people.
When I read that, it reminded me of Africa and how different ethnic groups are not only not recognized but simply razed as long as no one talks or knows about it. But as soon as it can no longer be hidden, then everyone acts as if they knew about the wrong doing and cared about the people the whole time. I for that reason I relate to the Basque and at the risk of getting too political, let me stop and say… The similarities between these ethnic groups’ problems in Europe as well as Africa are astounding. The lone thing that separates the two is no one cares about what takes place in Africa until someone puts it in the media or there is some type of resource that sprouts up in the particular area. In Europe, you have no choice. So when it happens, it shows how small yet covert the world really is.
Do I even need to relate how the cliche “game recognizes game” is true and yet complete basura in basketball? There have been so many guys I have seen dominate on the court and be tossed aside as if they were scrubs. I was on the summer league team with the Vancouver Grizzlies when they dismissed Stephen Jackson like he couldn’t play. Was I watching the same guy they were? You see how good he is now? He’s been the exact same player since high school. The same year Vancouver let him ride, he finished second or third in rookie of the year voting starting for New Jersey. Then they let him ride too. This phenomenon continued and climaxed with him winning a championship with San Antonio, killing in ATL and getting that contract he deserved.
OK, so I might be a bit biased because we are from the same area and that might have something to do with me ignoring the off-court antics. However, I’m sure we’d agree on the fact that he can play and if he were one of those highly touted No. 1 picks not only would “Game” ignore those antics of his, “Game” would do everything in its power to protect and emphasize the most minute positive attribute he has. They should change that statement to “Game recognizes game as long as someone else recognizes it.”
And even that wouldn’t be complete. Talking about this reminds me of one of my most hated rappers, let’s just call him “Hey-mon” Tones (he’s Jamaican). Moving on… Anyway, he used to complain all the time about how no one recognized our skills (Oh yeah… You didn’t know I rapped?) He was going to small clubs performing, radio stations, selling underground CDs and everyone in the Houston/PA/Galveston area knew. Shiiii his rap game was nice. We were friends and not only were we both working our tails off to get noticed, but gave honest praise for each other. Lo and behold, he got a small break preforming after small-time rappers. Then bigger… Master P, UGK, then Outakst. Until now…
He’s on stage and on tour with the likes of Jay-Z and Lil’ Wayne consistently. After all he’d been through, I was proud he got to that level. But one time in the summer, Jigga, Weezie, Pimp C and all the big-time rappers were gathered along with some of the other up-and-coming artists along with “Hey-mon” and myself. And after all the ass kissing he’d witnessed and he himself taken part in, after all the struggles we’d both been oppressed with, he – not Jay-Z, not Big Boi, not Weezie, none of the big-timers – felt it just to insult me in front of all the rappers. His exact word directed at me was, “garbage.” This from a guy who beso mi culo the whole time we were both struggling was now searching for belonging among his superiors at my expense. Loud mouth, presumptuous, payaso-acting, flamboyantly brown nosing “Hey-mon”.
I assure you all that loud talking got real quiet after I told him I’d snap his little neck. (Sure, I surrender that I’m not a perfect man but I am a big man and I carry a big stick). Strip everything we have away. A man plus riches, cars, women and power is still a man. In the same way a bitch plus all the same is still a bitch. Like late Pimp C says, “Yeah I said it, and if you got a problem with it you can smell my cologne.”
I honestly believe he is the only person alive I hold animosity toward. For the life of me I can’t think of one other person I simply don’t like. For no other reason besides I witnessed first hand his wickedness turning a blind eye to something he knows to be true. Game recognizes game, right?
This denial of the obvious can be seen in abundance in basketball and even easier in everyday life. I could literally tell amazing first hand stories of completely unnecessary, bold-faced denials of the truth. Guys who told me something I never asked for in my face and proceeded to deny my existence. But I won’t, because I simply don’t care. I just laugh when I see them on TV or on some other stage talking and people actually buying the manure they are selling. I’m over here with guys who have no business outside the NBA, but when you ask most of them why the don’t try to go back, they echo the same thing. Over here they get more money and less poo-poo. Most of them dreamed about being in the NBA and all were disappointed once they got there. Zoran Planinic, Igor Rakocevic, Pete Mickeal and especially James Singleton. Geez! None of them have any business outside the stage of the best basketball players in the world. And everyone on our team could play there at the least. But hiding the hoops obvious in Europe is a bit more difficult. (Don’t get it twisted, it happens and is very possible, just not as easy). So sure I agree with the fact “Game recognizes game” only if it is conceded the fact that “Game” is a vindicative, wicked asshole. Otherwise, I hold that statement to be about as true as me having ever been a rapper.