Sunday, March 30, 2008

Dear Mark Cuban:

Please consider this blog post as my request for press credentials to any upcoming Dallas Mavericks game. Per your own blog post of March 29th, you are throwing the whole experience wide open to any and all bloggers. Good for you! I love to watch the way you can take a directive from the NBA and tweak and turn it to make a point.

Am I qualified for this? Maybe. Please consider the following:

My writing qualifications? Well, I briefly considered a major in journalism when I was in college a million years ago, but came to my senses quickly. But I have had letters to the editor published in my local newspaper from time to time, and I've been writing this blog for a few years now. It’s no great shakes, but my family and friends seem to enjoy it.

My technology credentials? I spent the last eight years of my teaching career as a technology coordinator in the Paris Independent School District, where I repaired computers, taught other teachers to not be afraid of email, and showed 1st graders how to publish a picture to a website, among many other things. I even taught elementary school kids how to use spell check, which is more than many of your frequent commenters seem to have learned. I subscribe to your blog, and look forward to a new posting from you with much anticipation.

My sports qualifications? My husband and I lived in Charlotte in the late eighties, and we were charter season ticket holders with the Charlotte Hornets. Man, those were the good years, before George Shinn got WAY too full of himself. When the games were fun, even if we didn’t win. When 23,698 people booed Michael Jordan the first time the Bulls came to the Charlotte Coliseum.

Michael Jordan. In North Carolina. Because he wasn’t part of the home team anymore. It was AWESOME.

We took our 18 month old daughter to almost every freakin’ home game that first season. Pregnant with her brother during the whole season, I carried her up the stairs to our nosebleed seats, put her up on my shoulders for every national anthem, taught her to cheer for Muggsy Bogues, for Robert Reid, for Dell Curry – who I could not be any more tickled for, watching him watch his son Stephen take the NCAAs by storm in this year’s tournament. I gave Kurt Rambis a high five during an autograph event, after he pulled a pacifier out of a three-year-old’s mouth and told the embarrassed dad in line in front of me: “it’s just so gross to see one of those things hanging out of a kid’s mouth.”

We missed the final home game of the year that first season because I gave birth to our son that May. But on our first night in the hospital, I sat in my room with my newborn son and watched the Hornets on TV, telling him all about the players we would take him to see during the next season. And we did.

Now, can either of my kids talk to you about basketball these days? Not so much, but they’re both students at the University of Alabama, and they can sure talk some Crimson Tide football.

We were only season ticket holders for one more year in Charlotte, because we moved back to Texas, where we picked back up with our enthusiasm for the Mavericks. My husband was actually in attendance for the first Mavericks home game – we still have the medallion he got at that first game. But we weren’t dating then, and he took another girl, so we don’t talk about that much. But he did get to boo Kiki Vandewehge.

But we’ve been Mavs fans ever since, most especially so since you bought the team. I winced when you traded Steve Nash and Jason Kidd, but realized why you did. I cheered when you made Avery Johnson your Head Coach. I get tickled reading about your problems with the league, and your clever and creative ways of dealing with them. I roll my eyes frequently at David Stern and his pompous pronouncements. I learned to hate the Miami Heat when we were in Charlotte (since they came into the league the same year as the Hornets), and I hate them still. I groaned in disbelief when the Dallas city government announced - and the Dallas Morning News published - the route for the stinking victory parade after game 2 in 2006. They jinxed y’all. I still hold them solely responsible for the Mavs losing the Finals.

So what could my blogging do for the Mavericks? In a literal sense, nothing. I have never been able to tell a pick-and-roll from a zone defense, though God knows I have tried to make sense of it all. I can’t brown-nose you, because I know very few important people, except my husband and my kids. I don’t know anyone you know, unless your wife happens to be from the Paris area. Hey - it could happen. Troy Aikman’s wife grew up around here. I don’t know your brother, haven’t met anyone at the Indy Convention Center, and I don’t have a business plan to present to you that is sure to be the Next Big Thing since

What I do have is a genuine interest in the Mavericks, and you, and other people who pursue professional sports as a way of life, whether as players, or owners, or in some other kind of a support role. Not in a “wow, how awesome you are!” kind of a way, but in how you conduct your lives, and how you interact with people who can ultimately do nothing for you.

I can write effectively, usually (I hope) with some semblance of humor. I could perhaps interpret the experience of being at a Mavs game from a different perspective for those who may not get the mechanics of what happens on the court, but who are still impressed and amazed at the drive and dedication of the people who choose to play.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Denise said...

Eloquent as always!

Dee Martin said...

Still chuckling....

ajreed said...

And I still cheered for Muggsy for years after that!