A nation turns it's lonely eyes to you?
My wife and I have very different tastes when it comes to movies. She’s a fan of drama, mystery/crime, and horror – aka movies you watch one time until you forget most of the plot then you can watch them again (I bought her Alpha Dog as a joke present once and she loved it). I am more a fan of comedy movies where you can re-watch them many times as the plot of the film isn’t as important as the jokes that remain funny no matter how many times you see or hear them (I have seen Step Brothers and The Burbs roughly three hundred times each). Because of that difference of opinion, it is rare that we both agree on a movie to watch. One exception to this rule is Varsity Blues. My wife likes it because, well, to be honest, it has just enough drama and more importantly Dawson and the guy from The Fast and the Furious either have their shirts off or wear shirts without sleeves for a good portion of the film. I like it because of Charlie Tweeder, the hilarious, over-the-top party character who was basically Stiffler from American Pie with a 4.4 forty-yard dash and hands that could catch any pass thrown in his direction…and because when compared to Billy Bob I actually appear to be in half-way decent shape.
I re-watched the movie a little over a week ago and began to wonder where movies like Varsity Blues went. Remember teen movies from the 1990’s? Specifically 1999? American Pie, Can’t Hardly Wait (1998…sorry), She’s All That, 10 Things I Hate About You, Drive Me Crazy, and Varsity Blues (basically all the movies Teen Movie made fun of)? What happened to over-the-top, exaggerated teen movies? Most had every high school demographic represented: the overly popular jock, the less popular but more easy-to-relate-to-guy, the gorgeous cheerleader/snotty/morally questionable girl, the not as gorgeous but still cute and much more down to earth “other girl”, the somewhat lovable geek, and the crazy party guy. The plot usually centered around a party, prom, or game that was so larger-than-life it usually involved a choreographed dance number or participants who looked like pro athletes.
This man changed teen movie history?
Somewhere between 2000 and 2004, the “teen movie” concept changed. Loser, although a huge bomb, and American Wedding, where the band geek and Jason Biggs (coincidently, the lead in Loser) ended up together and Stiffler became a softie instead of the party-hard lacrosse jock we met years earlier, started the trend that Napoleon Dynamite eventually mastered. Instead of glorifying how high school unfortunately tends to be with the rich, attractive, and athletic kids getting the majority of the attention and always coming out on top, the movies focused on portraying what some would call the “lesser” groups and showed them winning (Charlie Sheen your copyright money is in the mail…I promise) over the popular groups. Napoleon shopped at thrift stores and could barely handle riding a bike. Despite those “limitations”, we couldn’t get enough of him and we couldn’t stand the former over-the-top jock Uncle Rico. “Ligers” and “bo staff skills” became regular topics of conversation. “McLovin” became a cultural icon. Michael Cera and Jonah Hill, two guys who would have been cast as “the Sherminator” and a sober driver in 1999, were able to be leading-role caliber movie stars in the new century.
As a former high school cross country and track runner, I appreciated these movies as they were about guys like me when I was in high school. I weighed 120 lbs soaking wet. I was a smartass, but wisely always avoided running my mouth to the wrong people. My friends and I did really dumb things with a lot of our weekends, including filming our own versions of “Nuthin’ But a G Thang” music videos and marching through Wendy’s restaurants chanting “I’m the Whiz” from Seinfeld. I dated girls, but they were never the future model, “prom queen”-types (if any of you are reading this, sorry, but it’s true…also, my phone and address are unlisted and my wife, thanks to the massive pregnancy hormones, now has Hulk-like strength). They were smart, normal, and down to earth …and according to 1999 teen movies, they, and I, were bad things.
Unfortunately, if the ebb and flow of teen movies of the past is any indication, teen movies will eventually swing back to the Usher-led dance number movies of the late 1990’s. After doing a little research, I realized this had already happened in the 1980’s. Movies like Risky Business, All the Right Moves, and Sixteen Candles opened the decade with the same types of parties, proms, and characters seen in films like those in the late 90’s. One could argue the turning point of the decade was Teen Wolf, where we saw Michael J. Fox be a part of both sides of the spectrum, with the nerdy, unathletic side eventually winning out over the cool, white leisure suit wearing, unstoppable basketball player “wolf” and the less attractive, girl next door character of Boo winning Fox’s heart over the gorgeous and extremely popular blonde Pamela Wells character. Following Teen Wolf, movies like The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, and The Goonies featured beloved “geek”-like characters who triumphed over or won the respect of the high school elite. When this will happen again, I have no idea. My guess would be sometime after Glee runs it’s course on TV and once the Jonas Bros. hit the weight room.
To close and answer your questions, yes, I really did go through and look this stuff up. Yes, I had that kind of spare time today. Below is a list of teen movies in chronological order with release years from the 1980’s through today that shows what I am talking about:
Risky Business 1983
All the Right Movies 1983
Sixteen Candles 1984
The Karate Kid 1984
Teen Wolf 1985
Weird Science 1985
Just One of the Guys 1985
Breakfast Club 1985
The Goonies 1985
Pretty In Pink 1986
The Karate Kid Part 2 1986
Ferris Buehler 1986
Say Anything 1989
The Karate Kid Part 3 1989
Can’t Hardly Wait 1998
American Pie 1999
Cruel Intentions 1999
She’s All That 1999
10 Things I Hate About You 1999
Varsity Blues 1999
Drive Me Crazy 1999
Bring It On 2000
Road Trip 2000
Van Wilder 2002
American Wedding 2003
Napoleon Dynamite 2004
Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist 2008
The House Bunny 2008
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World 2010
Easy A 2010
So for those of you who do not know, my wife is pregnant with our first child. She is due October 17th and we won’t know the sex of the baby for quite some time. Over the years I have taught myself to take things as they come and never get too excited one way or another about things as they occur. Because of this, the magnitude of our first pregnancy and everything it entails did not set in until our first doctor’s appointment.
Even as we entered the women’s health office at the hospital, it all just seemed like a normal visit to any doctor’s office. I was remarkably calm as I knew this would be one visit where there was absolutely no chance of me getting any shot or having to turn and cough as a doctor skipped the dinner portion of our date. I sat down while my wife checked in and located the nearest ESPN Magazine and started reading. My wife’s name was called by a friendly-looking, elderly female nurse in bright pink scrubs and as we made our way through the maze of exam room hallways to her room my main concern was whether Iowa was going to upset Michigan State in the Big Ten Tournament match up that afternoon. Then that sweet, grandma-like nurse opened the door to the room…
Now, I’ve been to plenty of doctors’ offices as during my childhood I was rushed to see Dr. Curtin and his endless supply of antibiotics anytime I sniffled. This was NOT a normal exam room. The first thing I noticed was the size of the room – it was about the size of my living room at home…except my living room has comfortable couches, my big fluffy recliner, and a TV. This room had an exam table that looked like something out of a Saw movie complete with what the nurse would later define as a “crotch light”. As we sat down, the nurse began to ask a series of questions to my wife which I tried desperately to block out as my comfort level plummeted to somewhere near the Titanic’s current location. I turned around to look out the window and realized the windows here were like those in high-rise buildings in Chicago. They could open, but just barely enough as to not allow any “accidents”. Well played, hospital design team. You all must have known that questions about things like “flow” would cause husbands to want to find the absolute closest exit, even if that was an eighth floor window.
It turns out my Irish ancestry doesn’t bring much luck as the nurse who just five minutes ago looked like she would give me a quarter if I held a door for her transformed into an interrogation officer from the Spanish Inquisition and started asking me questions, “And how is your health lately, Joseph?” I responded with, “Other than the intense discomfort I have right now, just fine, thanks for asking.” Apparently she and my wife share the same sense of humor as neither laughed at that zinger or the “Now, I have to ask, is ‘crotch light’ the medical and/or scientific term for that black tentacle with a light bulb sticking out from the exam table? Or is that just a pet name you all have for it in the office?” question I followed it up with.
Nurse “crazy questions” left the room and my wife put on what had to be the most flattering (sarcasm if you couldn’t tell) peach-colored exam gown I have ever seen and proceeded to climb the beast-like exam table and wait for the doctor. I appreciated my wife’s courage as I would not want to be anywhere near that thing despite the fact that they put pink booties on the ends of the stirrups. I hate to break it to you, but two pieces of three inch pink cloth definitely DO NOT hide the intimidation of a mechanical exam table that looks like if it were to be touched by the cube from Transformers it would instantly take over as the leader of the Decepticons, just like the bag of candy doesn’t make the guy in the windowless van any less creepy.
The doctor came into the room and slid into “exam position” and I quickly realized that the spectator chairs were perfectly aligned with the exam table so I would have a bird’s eye view of an exam of which I wanted absolutely no sight. With speed I haven’t shown since the last fifty yards of a high school cross country meet, I lept up and moved my chair to the head of the mechanical bull of an exam table as the doctor prepped instruments and a “wand” that, like other things in the office, seemed harmless at first but in fact ended up not being very friendly according to the faces my wife made as they were used.
Then it happened. All the discomfort from the previous twenty or thirty minutes disappeared as a Thumper-like noise became audible (yep, you read that right…I referenced Bambi and Transformers in the same blog). Our baby had a heart beat and strong and healthy one at that. I held in tears like I used to do when watching Extreme Make Over: Home Edition with my roommates in college because I am an idiot and don’t like to show emotion even at amazing moments like this one. As the doctor, the head of the evil organization known as a women’s health office now turned angel, moved things around and the picture began to change and clear up, she pointed out the arm and leg nubs along with the head of this tiny person my wife and I made. All three of us laughed as the baby wiggled around like it knew it was on camera and wanted to show us he or she was just fine in there despite whatever craziness I had imagined earlier during the exam. Our little one made the first three people to ever see it crack up within five seconds of seeing him or her. I couldn’t help thinking to myself, “Touché, baby Jackson, touché…I think you and I are going to get along very well for a long time”.
In 1992, Christian Laettner hit arguably the most famous shot in the history of the NCAA Tournament to win arguably the greatest game in the history of NCAA basketball. He went on to represent his country, albeit from the bench, and walked away with a gold medal as a member of the 1992 Dream Team (THE greatest team ever assembled in any sport…ever…don’t question me on this in a bar argument as I will start yelling…the only argument is if Isiah Thomas should have been on the team). He was drafted into the NBA in 1992 and after bouncing around to and from seven different teams during a relatively disappointing career, he cashed out of the NBA and retired. According to a three sentence blurb in the Chicago Sun-Times last week, Laettner has now found himself in debt and has lost a $3.8 lawsuit to Shawne Merriman over defaulting on a business loan between the two (what a Maryland Terp and a Duke Blue Devil were doing in business together I will never know…).
To be clear, I have never been a Christian Laettner fan as I was drawn to the “Fab 5” with their baggy shorts, highlight-reel style of play, and swingman with whom I shared a last name. Although he has never been one to me personally, Christian Laettner was and is a hero to many. To those who played the race card in the early 90’s, his Duke teams were not players pulled from the inner city who wore shorts down to their ankles. They were clean cut, smart, “well-spoken” (apparently speaking with non-regional/ethnic diction equals intelligence?), and wore shorts that showed everything Bobby Hurley had to offer. To basketball purists, they played the game the “right” way, playing an unselfish style with a strong emphasis on defense and fundamentals. Those Duke teams thrived off of and were fueled by hustle plays while teams like the great UNLV Runnin’ Rebels of 1990-91 and the Fab 5 came off as cocky and brash relying merely on pure athleticism and talent instead of hard work and heart. The latter group might be onto something as Duke beat both teams during Laettner’s tenure. Unfortunately for him, Christian Laettner, like so many athletes before and after, became a false representation of those basketball court ideals.
Laettner’s uber-intelligence on a basketball court did not transcend to fiscal knowledge and responsibility. That undying heart of his could not stop his real estate business from flat-lining. His four year Duke education, which he had to have received because every big time college athlete attends every single one of his or her classes, did not instill enough knowledge in him to master his eventual business field and maintain profits over loses and debts.
Who wouldn't want this guy developing their community?
Laettner has fallen victim (yes, I realize I am saying people who get paid millions of dollars to play sports are victims) to a fallacy that has plagued professional athletes for decades. They are told by everyone around them, including fans like you and I, how great they are at their respective sports. We watch and admire their on the court/field greatness and the fan in us assumes that greatness MUST lend itself to other aspects of life because these people are winners and winners always win. With their already giant egos being fed more encouragement, the athletes end up believing they can accomplish anything. I am sure Laettner sat down prior to all of this and had a Keith Hernandez Seinfeld moment, “This real estate thing can’t be that hard, I’m Christian Laettner! I was a perfect ten of ten in the greatest NCAA basketball game ever played! Let’s develop some property!” Why do you think Kobe Bryant went on Tyra and rapped? Why did Dick Butkus throw his hat into the acting ring and become the high school basketball coach on NBC’s Saturday morning show Hang Time? Because WE let them think they could do it. People cheered during Kobe’s terrible rap and even I tuned it to watch Butkus run a co-ed high school team that ran the same play every possession on Saturdays.
As sports fans we have to realize that the ability our favorite athletes show on the field or court does not necessarily translate to our world just like our random abilities do not translate to theirs. My ability to know more Saved By the Bell trivia than Derrick Rose doesn’t mean that I can be anything like him on a basketball court and his ridiculous first step and quickness doesn’t mean he can sell things like I do (although I would buy just about anything D-Rose tried to sell me). So tonight, if and when Cam Newton is responsible for 400 all purpose yards and 5 touchdowns, appreciate him for his athletic abilities and performance, but do not ask him to develop any communities in your area.
PS – This video is a wonderful tribute to Laettner’s shot…enjoy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bPMo14XTTvE
Technology improves people’s lives. I have been a firm believer of this ever since I put my first copy of Oregon Trail into the old Apple IIe and promptly learned to stay away from any situation where cholera and dysentery may end my life or that of any member of my family. Who knows, without that knowledge I may have been lost fording a river or passed on to the other side due to exhaustion years ago. That explains my stellar 60% completion rate of the lists my wife leaves for me on my days off.
Andy and I could very well have shared the same fate...
Unfortunately, after moving to the far suburbs and being exposed to it everyday, I have found a technology that I am convinced was created solely for the purpose of annoying me to no end – Bluetooth Technology. Please don’t get me wrong, I am all for safe driving and I see the validity of using Bluetooth in your car. I actually enjoy pulling up next to a person who appears to be talking to his or her self as it makes me feel a little saner. Professionals in a busy office or workplace? Bluetooth until you’re blue in the face as I am sure you have a million things going on during your day and need both hands free.
Where I don’t see the necessity of Bluetooth head sets is in public places like Panera Bread, the Panera Bread right by my work, to be exact. You may be asking yourself, “How is talking on Bluetooth in line any different than talking on a cell phone?” and I am glad you asked. When one talks on a cell phone, the mouth piece is near one’s mouth and the talker realizes this and generally speaks at a normal level. This is different with Bluetooth as the earpiece with the seizure-causing blinking light is far away from the speaker’s mouth so the speaker yells his or her end of the conversation. Did you know that Ashley went into an empty bedroom with Ryan, who happened to be dating Amanda at the time, at Gia’s New Years Eve party while Gia’s parents were away for the weekend in Wisconsin? I did because I was lucky enough to be in the same zip code of the nameless friend of Amanda who was conflicted as to whether she should tell Amanda because she kissed Ryan at a party a few weeks back and doesn’t want Amanda to find that out if she confronts Ryan and he comes clean about everything. OMG.
A friend of mine used to list his “dislikes” on his Facebook page when we were in college and #2 on his list was “Bluetooth Technology” (#1 was Elijah Wood…BT came in a whole three spots ahead of Harry Potter and five above “grown men on razor scooters”…nice work, AJ) I never really agreed with him because I thought “grown men on razor scooters” was one of the more ridiculous things I had ever heard, but I have seen the light, AJ – the irritatingly intense, bright, blue, blinking, brain-bedlam-inducing light.
Consider this a public service announcement
As this is the second installment of “S#*% My Wife Does That I Don’t Understand”, I must preface this entry by again saying that I love my wife and that if she ever had time or the desire to write anything like this about me, she would have enough material to fill a 12 volume set.
A few nights ago my wife and I were peacefully asleep when I woke up to a low growl coming from our dog at the foot of the bed. I assumed she was dreaming and thought nothing of it until I felt her stand up in bed. I looked up and she was standing over me growling at the main entry door to our bedroom (there is a second door that goes through the master bath…that’s important for later…). At the same moment I began to hear a faint rendition of the creepiest Christmas song of all time (click here and listen before continuing your reading). A wave of terror swept over me but promptly left as I decided that the cat must have hit a Christmas decoration that played that song.
Then the song got louder. And louder. And louder. I realized we had no decoration that played that song because, no matter how nice the words were, I always thought the tone and chanting of it were too creepy to be enjoyed during a holiday. Our dog started growling louder. And louder. And louder. Uh-oh. That same wave of fear swept over me again as my wife popped up from her slumber to ever-so-loudly yell, “What the $#%@ is that?” A childhood of staying up late to watch Child’s Play, Halloween, and Friday the 13th movies caused my mind to snap into “there is a psychotic man dressed in a Santa costume with a radio and gun/sword walking down my hallway” mode. Do most people EVER enter this mode? No, but it was 3:00 AM and again my formative years were filled with me witnessing indestructable serial murderers killing teenagers for fun. Also, it didn’t help that a few months back we were informed from a detective from the police department that our house used to be rented by drug dealers.
“I have no idea…I’ll check it out, stay here.” I put on my glasses and climbed out of bed. I realized then why my dad always had a 2 x 4 underneath his side of the bed. There I was in a pair of polar bear boxers with nothing to defend myself with against whatever was coming down the hallway but Jack Johnson and Mr. Tom O’Leary. Crap…this is absolutely not the story I want in my obituary. The song was so loud it sounded like it was right outside the door so I ran around the bed and into the hallway ready to be instantly mauled by Satan with a Santa hat.
Nothing. Not a damn thing. I crept down the hall and the music started to sound like it was coming from back inside the room. As the dog started to bark I realized whoever/whatever was out there must have heard my wife yell and went around to the other entrance to the bedroom and was now inside. That means he/she/it is fast, too. That’s exactly what a guy who polished off two Whoppers (fine, you caught me, I had onion rings, too…are you happy?) for dinner wants to go up against in the middle of the night. Super.
I ran back into the bedroom donning my very intimidating polar bear boxers again ready to do whatever it is I am supposed to do in that situation. Yet again, nothing. It then became crystal clear what was going on. We were dealing with some sort of crazy, invisible gremlin creature hell-bent on ruining Christmas by torturing a young suburban couple with creepy chanting music and spells of invisibility. (Did I mention this took place at 3:00 AM?)
As it turns out, I was wrong on all accounts (go figure). “Oh God!” my wife yelled, again making me think something is about to jam an axe into my back, “It’s my Iphone. I must have turned on Pandora radio in my sleep and it went to the Christmas station. Sorry, baby.”
Sorry?? Sorry, you say?? My heart rate is in the thousands and I get “sorry”. Thank you, honey. I may not have died defending the house and your life that night, but those few minutes will most likely end my time on this earth five years earlier than I was set to go before.
Merry Christmas and watch out for those invisible gremlin creatures. They’ll get ya…
On the day of one of the very first Bulls games of this season, I realized after I had already arrived at work that I would not be home in time to catch the beginning of the game. No problem, I thought, I will just call my wife and have her DVR it for me. I made the call, she set the DVR, and all was well. When I sat down to start the game recording I was hit with a tough realization – my wife had DVR’d the game on ESPN and not WCIU. To those of you that do not realize what this means, I was unable to watch the game with hometown announcers Neil Funk and Stacey King. Instead, I was forced to watch the game listening to national broadcasters who could care less about Chicago sports. I told my wife about this and she didn’t understand why I would care about what announcers are covering the game.
I immediately told her about Ron Santo and it all seemed to make sense.
Due to the long hours of my job, over the past three years I have listened to countless Cubs games on the radio. Ron Santo was the quintessential “homer” commentator and he refused to care what others thought of it. Listening to Ron and his “YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!”, “ALLLLL RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHT!!”, and “OHHH NOOOOOOOO!!” brought me to the ballpark in a seat next to a fan I could always count on. By no means was Ron the best commentator out there. He will never be accused of giving listeners too many breakdowns of upcoming pitch possibilities or strategies; however, he gave us all something more important – heart. Ron wore his heart on his sleeve and, no matter when you tuned into WGN 720, you always knew the state of the game just by the tone of Ron’s voice. He loved the Chicago Cubs and the fans with every fiber of his being and he gave every fan who listened to him a true sense of companionship through each high or low. We never went through anything alone, we always had Ron.
Ron’s on the field accomplishments speak for themselves. I am not writing this as a petition to have him inducted into the Hall of Fame because at this point I think that induction would be useless and, quite frankly, an insult to Ron. Ron Santo has always been a Hall of Famer to Cubs fans. Plaque or no plaque, that will never change.
The Chicago sports community lost a legend and friend today. In an era where the game of baseball has been tainted with innumerable allegations of performance enhancing drugs and Senate investigative committees, there was something pure and innocent about sitting back and listening to the Cubbies with your buddies Ron and Pat. Thanks for all the memories, Ron. Although we won’t be able to hear you when the Cubbies finally win it all, me and each and every member of Cubs nation will have you in our hearts.
In Chicago, the collective sports fan base desires and demands greatness each and every season. Greatness alone isn’t good enough for us, though. We need greatness with some flare, some pizzazz. The ’85 Bears wasn’t just the greatest football team ever assembled, those guys were monsters (monsters who could awkwardly dance and pretend to play instruments better than anyone else…ever) led by a coach with a fictional hurricane named after him. The Bulls of the 90’s? It wasn’t enough that we had the best player to ever play the game, the best “Robin” to set foot on a basketball court, and the best pro basketball coach of all time, we also needed Horace “Fo-Man” Grant with his crazy goggles and Dennis “The Worm” Rodman with his hair follicle antics. The 2005 Sox won with the most hated catcher outside Chicago and most beloved instigator in the Windy City behind the plate. Last year’s Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup thanks to an overtime goal by a kid we embraced for beating up a cabbie in Buffalo.
When we as fans finally witness such greatness, we cherish it and hold onto the memories for the rest of our lives. We carry it around with us ready to throw it in an out of towner’s face anytime he or she tries to tell us that Tom Brady’s near perfect Patriots team could have beaten the Bears Shufflin’ Crew. When Bill Simmons in his Book of Basketball told the world his hometown 1986 Celtics were the greatest NBA team of all time, we scoffed and (seriously, I might add) asked, “Who would cover Tony Kukoc on that team?” There is a reason the Chicago Bulls 1990’s Dynasty DVDs are selling on Amazon.com for almost $300 right now while the Lakers Dynasty DVDs are going for a mere $15. The demand for those memories is just that much greater in the Chicago sports fan population. I can guarantee that if you are a true Chicago sports fan, either you or someone you know owns the Super Bowl Shuffle VHS or you have downloaded it onto your MP3 player and you can probably still recite at least some part of the song.
I am here to let you know that we are on the cusp of greatness yet again. There is a hometown kid, born and raised right here in the Second City, who is in the process of making the leap to being not only a solid MVP candidate this year (give Tim Legler two weeks before he’s saying the same thing), but one of the NBA’s greatest players. He has rejuvenated a franchise that has been in the dumps for over ten years and is doing so with speed we haven’t seen before and new-found gusto (have you seen the commercials with “Slim Chin”?). Through 20% of this season, Derrick Rose has led a team without its major free agent signing power forward to a 9-6 record atop the Midwest Division, including the first winning record on the dreaded “circus trip” since The Statue won his last ring. Through fifteen games he is averaging 27 points, 8 assists, and nearly 5 rebounds per game. Of course you can say the scoring numbers will drop when Carlos Boozer returns to the line up, but with a solid and consistent (sorry Taj Gibson) post scorer, his assist numbers will only increase. Just for argument’s sake, if Rose conservatively averages 24 points and 9 assists per game for the rest of the season, he will finish the season in a group occupied only by Oscar Robertson, Nate Archibald, and Jerry West. Of these players all achieved First Team All-NBA Honors and all but Archibald won the MVP (Archibald had a bit of an attitude problem that led him to be traded twice in the prime of his career…D-Rose has no such attitude problem. In fact, players around the league like Kobe Bryant and even the spurned child of Chicago Kevin Garnett go out of their way to compliment him and his dedication to the game). In addition, all were honored as members of the NBA’s 50th Anniversary All-Time Team in 1996 and are enshrined in the Basketball Hall of Fame.
If you aren’t already one of the bandwagon jumpers who have joined in the Chicago Bulls herd, you should look into doing so and fast (at the very least for the United Center Nachos…). I have noticed people who couldn’t tell me the difference between a small forward and a hole in the ground posting Facebook status updates about the resurgence of the franchise and it is only going to get better from here. In the words of the immortal Stacey King (see, my argument exactly, in no other town would a former bench player turned color commentator like Stacey King be so loved and revered as in Chicago), “this kid is special”. Stacey’s right and I hope ALL of Chicago and the rest of the NBA start to take notice.