Happy Fourth of July week! We're relaunching the SportsHax newsletter along with America's birthday in hopes that everyone will be off work and bored enough to give us some attention. We'll email you every couple of weeks, whenever we have something to say, or maybe never again. You never know with us.
Hey, how's it going? I'm Damien Bowman, and I'm the computer guy who doesn't write very well. Welcome to SportsHax where Josh Flagner (the artist formerly known as RailbirdJ) and I try to put this writing bug to rest in a nice, laid back way where we don't have to keep up with anyone else.
The fun begins, now...
The most important question you can ask yourself everyday: Where's dinner?I like: baseball, food, and motorsports.
I don't like: pickles, tomatoes, and basketball despite heading into my 19th season as a basketball official. I guess I should also say I like getting yelled at by little Johnny's mom and dad because they made him be there even though he'd rather be playing Xbox with his friends.
Hello, I'm Josh Flagner, an opinion-having dad, husband, and manager who's tried and failed to be a writer so many times that Damien added me to this newsletter so I wouldn't feel bad about myself. Let's get started.
Shaq is the second or third best NBA player ever but he never gets added to the GOAT conversation. Miracle Whip is better than mayo. While we're at it, mustard, in many varieties but specifically Bertman's Ball Park Mustard, is unquestionably the best condiment.
Fan votes are always terrible and my Protestant refusal to participate in them might cost Francisco Lindor a spot in the Cleveland's 2019 All-Star Game. I think I just made fan votes the Pope, which is giving MLB way too much credit considering how much better than baseball Pope Francis is at the internet.
Am I rambling about random stuff here? You bet your panties I am. (I'm looking at you, Dan. I know you're wearing panties.) That's my goal here. To have fun, interact, and find ways to celebrate an old passion of mine; talking too much.
What I'm excited about right now
Summer -- summer has finally arrived in the metropolis of Cleveland! Cleveland's winters (and now Spring) may be the most brutal in America, but it's hard to discount how great the area is in summer. It's really hard to not find something fun to do every weekend, and as someone who tries to take it all in every weekend, I hope to share all of it with you. Remember, I like food and my stomach looks like I like food.
Independence Day -- America celebrates its 243rd birthday on Thursday and in this time of anger, angst, constant political electing, I'm happy to celebrate my favorite holiday with friends over burgers, hot dogs, fireworks, and margarita's. Yes, margaritas. As American I as I am, you can't discount the amount of tequila one can stuff into one drink. I'll have ONE Budweiser to feel 'Merican!
Baseball -- I know, probably sacrilege to say, but the All Star Game is back in Cleveland and I'll be at the festivities on Sunday and Monday. I'm excited to see baseball's biggest stars at the Home Run Derby and all of America's other 'stars' in the Celebrity All Star Game.
The best is yet to come...
What I'm listening to right now...
Blood Sugar Sex MagikRed Hot Chili Peppers' Blood Sugar Sex Magik is a weird album - to which this 10 things you didn't know Rolling Stone article can attest - and that's why I fell in love with it as a teen. BSSM landed in 1991, but I don't recall finding it until 1995-ish. I spent most of my teens trying to fit in and listening to whatever my peers thought was cool at the time and sometime in high school, someone started liking the song Under the Bridge. Since I was morphing my identity around my friends, I bugged my mom for a ride to the Record Exchange to buy a copy of the album.
I vividly remember being engrossed from the first track. The funk of it made my head bop. The lyrics were intriguing. Hell, even the cover art was cool. The world changes and songs take on new lives and sometimes things you liked become things you don't, but it's very cool that I became a lifelong fan of a band because a high school buddy of mine liked a song. Thanks, Tom.
Now I'm Done
I remained undecided on how I would end my portion of our first newsletter until the very last minute. I've had a few long-form essay ideas bouncing around in my head, I've been working on a few leadership topics in my professional life, or I even entertained commenting on an old sportswriting peer's latest thing about Kyrie, Durant and the Nets.
I chose Megan Rapinoe.
Hi Megan!If we're just getting to know each other through this newsletter, there's no better introduction than my thoughts about Rapinoe and this picture of her. Take a minute. Look at it. It's beautiful.
This picture is what I want for my daughters. I want them to dominate with the breadth and impact Megan Rapinoe dominates, and I want them to have the confidence to wear that fact on the outside. It's not about soccer or sports. It's not about patriotism or arrogance.
It's about being big, not small. It's about being heard, not silenced. If my daughters inspire just one little girl the way Megan Rapinoe is inspiring an entire generation, I will die a happy man.
If you don't believe me, believe Sue Bird. She's better at this Megan Rapinoe thing that any of us.
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