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Typically, I’m a believer of science. The earth really is round, vaccines don’t cause autism, we really (probably) did send men to walk on the moon and climate change is real and it’s real bad. But here’s one, minor, topic that I’m not sure about; time. Like, you can tell me 2000 was 20 years ago, and show me that we’re closer to the year 2040 than we are 2000, but my freedom of speech gives me the right to say that’s complete bull crap. And given the opportunity, I could prove it. The opportunity is really really specific though. …


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I wish my daughter had cancer. That sounds just awful, I know. And as awful as it sounds, it’s ten times worse to have that thought bouncing around your head. Then multiply that awfulness by 100, once you put it out in to the world. But I promise, I’m not the worst father in the world. I’m also not suffering from Munchausen syndrome by proxy.

What I am is, is a parent who is at a complete loss as I watch my daughter struggle with mental illness. You might feel the need to remind me of just how devastating cancer is, but I promise I’m fully aware. You may think that I’m somehow the one human on earth, whose life hasn’t been touched by cancer. Sadly, that isn’t the case either. You could be thinking that I have some sort of disclaimer in mind, and I’m daydreaming about one of the ‘good’ cancers, you know, the kind that isn’t life threating. But I’m not. I’m fully aware that I just said that I wish my daughter had a potentially fatal disease. But you know what? …


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I, for one, am thrilled that the Kansas City Royals are on the verge of signing Matt Harvey. I say this as a lifelong die-hard fan of the New York Mets, living in Kansas City. The 2015 World Series was an amazing experience for me. I loved my Mets, but I had also fallen pretty hard. They were just impossible to dislike. Matt Harvey played a huge role in the Mets success that year, and the Mets mismanagement of him, helped the Royals win the World Series. …


I’ve never liked Nick Cannon. I used to watch his show on MTV, “Wild ‘N Out” because some of the other cast members were pretty funny. I just never thought he was all that talented, as a comedian, an actor or as a rapper. I didn’t actively dislike him, I just thought he was completely insignificant. He has a bright smile, and he’s charming, so if he can draw an audience for a podcast, whatever.

The only times he’s ever shown up on my radar, or in my social media feeds, has been when he’s attempted to engage Eminem in some sort of beef. Which happened every few years, due to the fact that Eminem dated Cannon’s ex-wife, Mariah Carey, years ago and that relationship being mentioned in some of Em’s music. But Cannon trying to battle Eminem, would be like me playing Kevin Durant one on one, or Donald Trump trying to lead a country through a pandemic. …


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Like most people, who grow up loving sports, I’ve long enjoyed the debates around who belongs in their respective Hall of Fame. And as much fun as those debates are, it’s always driven me just a little bit crazy, that the greatest honor an athlete can receive is purely subjective. Everything else they do is so structured and defined with results that are measured and exact. The pitcher struck someone out, this guy made a basket, this team won and that team lost. …


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I can’t remember exactly when I started to follow basketball, but I do remember the player that first captured my imagination and became my first favorite basketball player. Growing up on Long Island, it was probably a sin, but that player was Magic Johnson. And so, by default, the Lakers became my favorite team. Those no look passes were, and remain, completely mesmerizing. All I really remember from that part of my life, as a basketball fan, was Lakers versus Celtics and Magic versus Larry Bird. …


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It’s been said a million times and in a thousand different ways, but movies bond us. As a culture, as a society, as friends and as family. And a love of movies is something my uncle and I shared. Prior to the Streaming Wars, my personal movie collection was my prized collection. And Uncle Jer, as usual, set the bar and showed me the path. His collection was not just flawless, it was beautifully cataloged. I followed his lead, and showed him how he could modernize his archives by using my go-to tool, Microsoft Excel. …


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In my 42 (43 in one week, WTF?!) years on this planet, I’ve been pretty lucky in a plethora of ways. Okay, I wasn’t particularly lucky when they passed out the height or hair genes. But trust me, I’ve been lucky in so many other ways. In general, I’m just lucky that I haven’t had to say many final goodbyes to loved ones.

In third grade I had to say goodbye to the only grandfather I had ever met. My mom’s father died long before I was ever even remotely a consideration, as she tragically lost him on her 7th birthday. I wasn’t especially close to my grandfather, they lived in Florida and we were in New York. But I remember him fondly. Funny enough, what I most remember about that loss, was something I wrote, as a way to process that loss, that my second grade teacher loved so much that she had to tell my parents what a talented writer she thought I was. Then at the age of 14, I lost the grandmother from my mother’s side. Another tragic loss for my mother, as she passed away while my mom was on a plane to Cleveland to visit her. I loved her, but I wasn’t really all that close with her. Although, I realize now that I have more than a few of her personality traits. I don’t call my mother every night, just as she and my father are sitting down to dinner, like grandma did. But I’m pretty good at keeping in touch, something she had in spades. And I’m a Jedi Master of worry. I wasn’t able to attend her funeral, due to the fact that I was sitting in a hospital bed in Kansas City. Side note: when the wire from your braces pops out and goes THROUGH your cheek, it hurts like a bitch. It can also get infected and cause your face to blow up like a balloon. …


*I wrote this back in January, I finally think I’m ready to post.

Last night I was re-watching “Deadpool 2,” and I was reminded of some words of wisdom (according to me) that I have shared with my daughter, on more than one occasion. There’s a character, Domino, who claims that her super power is luck. Just luck. She can’t fly, she wasn’t hit by a radioactive domino tile and she wasn’t born on planet Domino. She’s just lucky. When someone chases her, they slip on a gun which results in her finding a gun. Someone pulls a gun on her, and it just happens to jam. Luck is her super power. Now my daughter, unfortunately, has had a different experience with luck. But her power, according to me, is actually her anxiety. And I tell her this, because I’m kind of an authority when it comes to anxiety. …


When you’re a kid, there comes a time that you realize there are certain laughs that you love to hear. And later, there’s an even more amazing moment that occurs when you realize you have the ability to make those people laugh. The epic laughs of my childhood, as far back as I can remember, were those laughs belonging to my father, my mother (it’s even better when she makes herself laugh) and the laugh of my uncle (on pop’s side). Nothing personal against the laughs missing from this list, but the list is the list. Truth is, aside from maybe two or three laughs, I love the sound of everyone’s laugh. …

About

Gregg Hirshberg

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