Happy Friday The 13th – Day Before Valentine’s Day …. culminating a week that has been an All-You-Can-Eat Buffet of Irony satisfying the column fodder appetite of the most ravenous conspiracy theorist.
A week beginning with Coach Smith Died was already “special” ….. AND then (2) Tark the Shark died …… AND then (3) _______; AND then (4) ________; AND then Bubba & Kevin squared off…. !!!!
I mean REALLY!
That last column about Coach Smith drew a 30% increase from our usual “whole buncha views”. From reader comments, most seemed to decipher that my soupcon of cynicism was not aimed at Coach Smith’s worthiness for plaudits at all; but rather the wholesale knee-jerk over-kill. A proper respect for his memory turned into a Mardi Gras parade of anecdotes….. “I can top your example of how gosh-darn incredibly wonderful this incredibly wonderful man was …..”.
I’m not sure where the disciples of Robert Seymour go upon leaving this mortal coil. When one’s niche theology specifically eliminates both a Heaven and a Hell, what’s left – a cornfield in Iowa – a mountaintop in Tibet – a Bojangles in Mebane?
If Dean Smith does encounter Mahatma Ghandi, Mother Teresa and Kindly Ol’ Bill Friday, I can imagine Dean apologizing to them for the “bit much” media blitz his passing ignited. If Coach Smith always felt embarrassed by his name on a certain raftered ediface, the gratuitous over-use of 2nd Coming Type this week had to add to his embarrassment.
It wasn’t so much Dean Smith The Man / Coach being overly-memorialized as it has been an explosive release of five-years of pent-up Carolina Way chest-thumping braggadocio. Since Marvin hit SEND, Tru Blues have had to stifle their notorious “Ain’t We GREAT” reflex. Five years of constipated arrogance has turned many a blue eye brown. This release was a long overdue enema.
Eulogizing Coach Smith 24/7 has been a socially acceptable way to remind all the inhabitants of Earth that Coach Smith was Special ergo Carolina Basketball was Special ergo fans of Carolina Basketball are Special too. The Carolina Way LIVES! Hark That Sound.
….. then Jerry Tarkanian up and died too. No one saw THAT coming.
HOW DARE that eeeeevil, cheatin’ towel-chewing old hound dawg-lookin’ crook pick THIS WEEK to die!!!! This was Dean’s Week! ESPN still had seven / eight more Dean Documentaries set to air all across their multi-channel universe. ESPN honcho John Skinner was in his Tru Blue glory….. then Tark The Shark died. Phooey!
It is a safe bet that every Dean disciple on Earth is also a Tark-hater and a K-hater, Calipari-hater, Boeheim-hater, et al. Sure, Tark probably fought even harder than Coach Smith did for giving troubled kids, aka black kids, a chance and was certainly a far more vocal opponent of NCAA hypocrisy. No one ever made himself a target of NCAA revengeance to the degree that Jerry Tarkanian did.
The phrase “talk the talk AND walk the walk” REALLY applied to Jerry Tarkanian. I’m not saying Coach Smith was insincere at all. He was not. But Tark actually suffered the slings and arrows of wholesale public and bureaucratic criticism for his unpopular stance.
Dean Smith and Jerry Tarkanian now together forever both in The BB Hall of Fame and in their chronological passing.
WARNING: This next segment is going to rankle TheRealWolfKennel. I don’t choose the headlines. I simply comment on them.
That terrible senseless shooting in Chapel Hill…. On a per capita basis, Chapel Hill outranks even neighboring Durham in recent high-profile tragedies….. Eve Carson…. that Public Health professor last year….. and now this one. Three young high-achievers, who all happened to be Muslim, killed in cold-blood by a deranged sicko who happened to be …… NOT a member of The Tea Party, NOT a fan of FoxNews, and who did NOT vote for Thom Tillis. Plus he was NOT even a disciple of eeeevil Art Pope or The Koch Brothers. This deranged killer was an avowed atheist ergo NOT even one of Frankin Graham’s radical flock.
All those NOTs also fit the killers of Eve Carson and the Public Health professor too. Those two heinous crimes were by young AfAms wearing hoodies. This latest Chapel Hill killer was “a white guy” but NOT “a crazy right-wing white guy”. Darn it! Chapel Hill’s run of bad luck continues.
Obama buddy Rham Emmanuel says “Never let a good crisis go to waste”. The Franklin Street crowd keep trying but just can’t get these senseless killings right. It is not true that “the local media” was planning to fly Brian Williams in to Chapel Hill “to report” that Craig Hicks WAS a crazy right-wing guy. If Brian says so it MUST be ….. oops! Nevermind.
The political profiing of Craig Hicks, once verified, was quickly eliminated from every updated news account of the tragedy. His factual profile did not “fit the desired media / community narrative”. Of the 5,000 who gathered to mourn the tragic loss of these three young people, wonder how many knew that this sicko was decidedly NOT “a crazy right-wing white guy”. If you had a nickel for every mourner who did NOT know that, you could buy a ticket to the upcoming UNC v Duke game.
Knowing Coach Smith’s strong opposition to The Death Penalty, one has to wonder if he might reconsider for Craig Hicks or for those street hoodlums who brutally killed Eve Carson and the Public Heath professor. We’ll never know.
Would Coach Smith (or Tark) have thought it was OK for that Chicago Little League team to cheat in assembling their team? The narrative excuse is that it was quite OK for them to cheat “because there used to be slavery in America”. A rather curious point-of-view, even by Southside Chicago standards.
Of Coach Smith’s well-documented social justice views, the only one I actually disagreed with him on is capital punishment. We differed; of course, on which political path would actually bring about “social justice”. Coach Smith and I also had differing theological perspectives. I am A Heaven and A Hell kinda guy.
Bill Friday passed away just before a key turn-of-events in The Great Upleasantness. Now Coach Smith passes away just before Mary & Jay’s book comes out. When something hangs around for five years, such coincidences are bound to occur.
Have a lucky Friday The 13th and DON’T FORGET Valentine’s Day!
Are you watching the new TV show – Allegiance? It looks to be the next “24” or “Homeland”. Don’t start watching without seeing the first two episodes. You will never understand it.
BREAKING NEWS: Just as I posted all the above; the uber-BIZARRO news update about The Fedorians Vandalizing the Duke Lockerroom was posted LINK …. Way too many Yee Haas and WHOA NELLIES buried in that report to even begin to comment on now. Better put on your hipboots before you wade into this one. Bubba and Kevin, both with Golden Dome legacies, are “of differing mindsets”. OH MY!
FYI…. $27,000 amounts to about 13 days of Gene Chizik’s annual salary not that Gene is relevant to this matter at all.