Hullabaloos and Bonus Sex
April 16, 2007
A hullabaloo. An uproar, a clamorous confusion. Unexpected noise, and even a verb, intr, “to make a hullabaloo.” An obscure etymology: “The conjecture has been made, but without any evidence, that it was orig. a wolf-hunting cry, and contained the French words bas le loup!” But mostly we just think of it as noise, perhaps almost synonymous with “hootenanny.” This week’s noise: Don Imus. I had no interest in the story. I never liked Imus’ show, and for me he would forever be the jerk in Private Parts, which is a terrific movie, btw. The other day a friend asked me if I thought it was a travesty that they were doing to Imus. I couldn’t have cared, although I saw both sides. But not any more. Browsing through the huffington post, I came across this damning take on the Imus affair by Etan Thomas, NBA basketball player and poet extraordinaire. Thomas’ article was most likely the best commentary of read on this whole (Natalie) imbroglio, and reading it inspired me to go through the Etan Thomas back posts. But, even more than that, it got me thinking about those athletes that celebrate the finer things in life (Samuel Taylor Coleridge and laudanum). So, I’ll leave it to the inimitable Free Darko and the ever trying Hash Browns…and Toast! to celebrate basketball-qua-urban milieu, whilst today we salute some of professional sports’ brightest literateurs.
1. Adonal Foyle, Golden State Warriors. Like Thomas, Foyle is a political activist and poet. Foyle graduated Magna Cum Laude from Colgate. Foyle has a number of poems on his website, of which I find “Damn Sun” to be the best. Here is an excerpt:
The guava tree sways, struck repeatedly by the breeze climbing gently off the ocean. Then warplanes explode across the sky as I seek a futile refuge beneath my bed. The United States invades Grenada. My world becomes a battleground.
That he hasn’t lived up to his high draft (drafted over TMac) position is inconsequential to his standing in the literary world.
2. Etan Thomas, Nobody Beats the Wiz. Like Mr. Foyle, Etan Thomas’ poetry is quite political. Here, an excerpt from a poem of his about the war in Iraq:
Out of the ashes of Iraq come soldiers dressed in fatigues of fire Wearing helmets secured in smoke They’ve choked off the lies spewed out of the mouth of a burning bush
The true warrior’s existing wake
Who’s flames burned them at the stake
Cremated their bodies
And stuffed them in an urn wrapped in red, white, and blue….
Rummaging through a forest set ablaze by one lethal match
With witty catch phrases forever attached to the side of their kingdom
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Links to Al Qaeda
And weapons of mass destruction…..
They’ve been skillfully thrown into the lion’s den
Out of the frying pan and into the furnace
Their courage exceeds any measuring stick
But they can hear the footsteps of death creeping around the corner
For they’ve been led into the eye of the storm
Transformed into peacekeepers
Lending a helping hand for the poorly planned post-war strategy……
I’ll leave it up to ERC to analyze the poetics; personally, I think it’s content is a little to overt for my tastes. I’m still waiting for an Iraq War representation that I can get behind, that really has the capacity in affect.
3. Miguel Batista, Seattle Mariners. Batista is a Spanish language poet, the author of the book, Sentimientos en Blanco y Negro. Here’s the only English language excerpt I could find:
I would like the power to save / the souls in agony / who sustain the hope / of improving some day.
Batista gets extra points for being the only one of the three to win a championship. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention John Amechi who plans on actually getting a doctorate in education, and Vince Carter who famously attended his UNC graduation, despite the fact that it coincided with game 7 of his playoff series against the Sixers.
And, as a preview for the eventually return of the “Teen Sex Comedy” feature, here is a trailer for the worst of the 80’s ilk, a movie called “Pick-up Summer,” a film imdb describes thus, “It’s a summer of fun for two teenaged boys who spend their time chasing two sisters, annoying a biker gang, and basically getting into typical sophomoric hijinks whenever they can.” Enjoy.