Real life … I try to avoid it at all costs.
That’s why I do this. Sure, there are downsides such as the hours keeping me away from my family more than I’d like and feeling an urgent need to cry every time I look at my paycheck.
But the huge upside is that my job revolves around games.
For as long as I can remember, games have fascinated me. I love the fact there are winners and losers, I love the strategy, the energy, the athleticism, the atmosphere, the preparation and the passion.
When two teams or two individuals or multiple individuals are giving maximum effort to be the best … well, how can anyone not like that?
I’m a big pizza lover. To me, games are like pizza – even when they’re bad, they’re still pretty good.
The best part about games is they’re not like real life.
The joy of a big victory will wear off as will the pain of a devastating loss. Sure, you’ll have memories – some happy, others hurtful, but most of us just move on to the next game.
Real life is different.
Unfortunately, since sectionals started a few real-life situations have interfered with the games.
I remember showing up to Oneonta High’s boys sectional semifinal and not seeing Jerry Mackey. I asked a few questions and found out Mackey was in the hospital.
Immediately, I thought it had to be serious. The Mackey I know, if he had to choose between taking the keys to a new Ferrari or a clipboard to coach in a sectional basketball game, he’d take the clipboard 100 percent of the time.
A few days later the news came out that Mackey had multiple sclerosis.
The same night I learned about Mackey, I covered the Edmeston-Southern Cayuga sectional semifinal and didn’t see Darren Belden on the bench for the Panthers. I later learned he had to be hospitalized that day with pneumonia.