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Super Authenticity



 

Where will you put your money this weekend?  Will you bet on the 49ers or the Chiefs?  Perhaps you will keep your bills in your wallet but maintain a friendly stake in one team to win Super Bowl LVIII.

 

What about me?

 

I should probably put something down on the Kansas City Chiefs.  My dad grew up in Kansas City.  I have family still living there.  The only problem with placing a bet on Sunday's game is that I don't gamble.

 

Why?  It’s less about morality and more about practicality.

 

I haven’t reached the income bracket where I can throw money away at chance.  Every drop of my financial resources contributes to paying bills, saving for emergencies, and investing in a diverse portfolio.  I don't have much discretionary income.

 

While you have me on the stand, let me confess another truth.

 

I haven't watched one NFL game this season.  At home, we have Netflix and Prime.  I don't visit the ESPN or NBC websites for sports news during my downtime.

 

Have you seen almost every game or scrolled online for information about the San Francisco 49ers or Kansas City Chiefs?  If so, cool.  I can only name two players on the Chiefs.

 

Jerry Rice and Joe Montana.  Joke.  I know a few things about Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce.

 

Will you host a big Super Bowl party with friends, food, drinks, and family?  

I'm not.  During the game, I will likely prep for another work week.

 

I looked forward to the Super Bowl in college and high school.  I enjoyed the game, the commercials, and even some of the half-time acts.  Priorities and interests shift with age and location.  I learned about Sunday’s game from my wife. 

 

She asked me if I planned to go to a bar and watch the Super Bowl.  I laughed.

 

"What's so funny?" she questioned.

 

She smirked when I explained my lack of interest in the game and limited awareness of the teams. 

 

Later in the week, she propped an Instagram video in my face about the Kansas City Chief’s tight end, Travis Kelce.  His fade haircut attracted more attention than other stories in the first week of Black History Month 2024.  In the Instagram clip, commentators discussed the irony of how popular the haircut grew after Kelce adopted it and his team continued to dominate.

 

I rocked fades back in kindergarten.  In many communities, that’s how almost every Black boy and man has styled their hair for the last twenty-five years.

 

We must be in another season where old greats become new trends when people identified as white embrace them.  For further evidence, see the news about Tracy Chapman and Luke Combs's Grammy performance. 

I don't know.  What do you think?

 

These words are spilling out of my head after an 11-mile run in the rain.  I saw one other person jogging.  Most sane people in Antigua stayed indoors and followed the meteorologist's instructions to avoid the roads due to flash flooding.


 A man returning from his run while his wife wakes up.

I waited until the thunder and lightning passed and then opened the door.  After warming up with capoeira and a hill workout, I jogged steadily without headphones.  I sidestepped as many puddles as possible and every motorist on the road.

 

In addition to maintaining a heightened awareness of my surroundings, I thought about this piece, the Super Bowl, and opposition to my diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility course.  My mind and feet took me everywhere.  But one idea clicked when I stood before my laptop to write this blog post.


Prepare for criticism whether you gamble this weekend or do anything else involving risks.  Expecting the worst from people is not a call to pessimism or reckless living.  It is a plea for you to be authentic and stay ready. 

Wake up every day with intentionality, gratitude, and drive to meet the needs of your family, community, and the causes dearest to your heart.  Everything will come together when you are genuine and work towards goals aligned with passion and purpose.  

 

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