About Me

What you should know is that I’m a fan of all things NY. Plain bagels with Philadelphia cream cheese. $1 slices of pepperoni and sausage at 2am. Giants, Knicks, Mets, and Syracuse. Hoopin at the Garden, taking the 6 or A train into the city, and last but definitely not least, HIP HOP. As a new resident outside the nation’s capital, I’m learning to love brunch.

 

I stumbled into writing when I was posting random rants on Tumblr. A friend told me I should start taking my writing more seriously. I took it as a challenge. Though that’s mostly relationship geared, it gave me the idea to create a site that’s more inclusive of all my interests; food, sports, mens’ fashion, and motivating the next generation. Thus, 30 and Beyond was born in September 2011.

You can also find my most recent work here and here.

5 comments

  1. Greetings. I just read your latest article at GMP — the one entitled “The Problem with Raising Trophy Kids.” I attempted to post a reply to it; but, apparently, posting at GMP now requires the payment of a lousy fee — something I’m unwilling to do. I would have preferred sending you an email, but I couldn’t find your email address anywhere. So, here is my reply, such as it is. Please forgive. I know it’s off-topic. It’s just that this is a “hot button” issue to me for personal reasons.

    I agree with the general message of your article, but there is a particular statement you’ve made that is open to dispute:

    “We look to coaches to affirm the life lessons that will transform weak, indecisive, uncoordinated boys into men who know how to dominate and act with conviction.”

    I’m going to assume (or at least hope) that you don’t mean what this statement says in and of itself; but I will respond to it because, as far as I’m concerned, it’s erroneous. It’s also out of sync with what GMP stands for.

    Apparently, many sports fans need to accept the reality that some boys have no interest in sports. (I happened to have been one of them.) Just because a boy has no interest in sports doesn’t mean he’s “weak, indecisive.” In fact, such a statement is an insult. I’ve noticed over the years (decades, really) that many sports fans view boys who never participate in sports as being deficient or worse. They are often wrongly stereotyped as wimps. Hogwash! Some boys who have no interest in sports are treated badly or even abused by their fathers, but who cares?

    What sort of weakness do you mean? Physical weakness (as if this were the worst deficiency there is)? There are men who have achieved high levels of fitness (including bodybuilders and Navy SEALs), but never had an interest in sports. They didn’t need sports to become healthy or increase their physical strength. (By the way, I’ve been working on a bodybuilding program for years. But the mandatory sports-centered P.E. of my youth offered no fitness programs at all for sedentary boys; so, I now extend my heartfelt thanks to the school sports establishment for the “gift” of neglecting the health and wellness of nonathletic boys. Lest I forget, none of my P.E. coaches – all of whom viewed nonathletic boys with indifference or contempt – provided any instruction in the sports themselves. Apparently, they assumed – wrongfully – that all boys aspired to be athletes.)

    Far more importantly, how about moral strength? Sorry, but some athletes definitely are not heroes. For example, a former football player at Vanderbilt recently was convicted and given a lengthy prison sentence for setting up his girlfriend so three other players could rape her while she was unconscious. I could go on and on. Indeed, the most popular of the school sports now have a rape culture associated with them. Statistics have shown that athletes accused of rape are far less likely to be convicted than nonathletic men accused of the same crime.

    Does participating in a sport teach the value of moral courage? No, it does not and cannot; nor, to be fair, were sports ever intended to serve that purpose. As much as all those who subscribe to machismo may deny it, there have been men of extraordinary courage who actually disliked sports when they were boys – men who have had far more courage than most of us. They were driven not by ego and self-centeredness, but by empathy, compassion, and moral courage. But, no, nonathletic boys should be denigrated and marginalized because we all know they never amount to anything.

    As a Christian, I’m always amazed by how much believers fawn over athletes. (Yes, some athletes are Christians; but the majority?) If I had a son who wanted to participate in a sport, I would support him. (Unlike sports fan fathers who don’t respect the personal preferences of their nonathletic sons, I would respect my son’s personal preference to participate in sports.) But I’d also worry about the influence ungodly teammates might have on him.

    Two friends of mine who played football in high school recently told me that most of their teammates had looked down on all the nonathletic guys at their schools. Is this the sort of attitude that develops social skills? I’d worry if my son were constantly exposed to this sort of sentiment. It is bigoted and arrogant.

    He might be influenced to develop a callous attitude when he witnesses teammates bullying other students, or he might be ridiculed for not having sex before marriage (remaining true to the scriptural injunction against fornication). Perhaps he would hear teammates in the locker room brag about their sexual conquests or even brag about a rape.

    For the record, I’m not opposed to team sports being in the schools (although I wish many more coaches would hold their players accountable for abusing or harming others when they’re not playing their sport).

    Respect is a two-way street.

    And that’s it. Lately I’ve grown mighty tired of all the rage on the Internet — which so often is a sewer full of racists of all stripes, incredibly stupid anti-Semites who blame Jews for virtually everything, people who laugh at victims of bullying and rape, etc, etc. This will be my last post for a long time. Best wishes to you. I’m done.

    1. First off, Bill, thank you for your response and even going so far as to find a way to reach me to be able to respond. I appreciate that. Now onto your feedback:

      My wording was more specifically related to the documentary itself but also to the stereotypical approach a lot of fathers take w/ team sports. A lot of fathers force their sons into sports to “make a man of them.” They want him to bulk up, become faster, adopt the intimidating disposition that a lot of athletes have. And that dangerous motivation is what leads to fathers treating their sons as trophies.

      You pointed out that Navy SEALS and bodybuilders aren’t athletes in the true sense of the word and didn’t aspire to be. But I’d guess that as little kids they were probably forced to attempt a sport at the guidance of a father/male figure. They just chose a different path later on in their lives.

      The 2nd portion of your argument is pretty much the same POV I hold. I think we’re saying the same thing.

  2. Sorry I haven’t responded sooner. I got distracted by various sundry concerns.

    You’re to be commended. When I saw that you had responded to my post, I was afraid you had gotten mad about it and had responded in a snide tone. But you didn’t. Apparently, you could tell that even though I was in an angry frame of mind when I wrote my post, my anger was not directed at you.

    What I did was to center upon a single sentence to the point of being obsessive about it. I possibly owe you an apology, but the fact remains that I stand by every word I said.

    You have written an excellent article; and as you have said, we are on the same page.

    By the way, I agree with your estimation of Jorge Zimmerman that you gave in one of your other OPs in this blog. Zimmerman’s conduct following the trial indicates that he is completely reprehensible and quite likely should have been convicted. (I didn’t follow the trial at the time.)

  3. Hello, I have read a few of your articles and was struck by one on GMP about how men can speak out about domestic violence. I work for a center that offers resources to survivors of domestic and sexual violence and wonder if you have speaking experience or if you speak at events? We have a gala coming up in March of 2018 and are looking for a man to speak to the issue of men joining the conversation and speaking out against violence in the home.

Express Yourself

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s