Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Diamonds Are Forever

The four most common comments I get about the blog are these:
  1. Dude, why don't you show (Player X) or (Team X) some love?

  2. Even though I don't know ANYTHING about sports, I love your writing!

  3. Mike, I need more of you…write more columns!

  4. Wait, wait…so, you write? I thought all English majors became teachers!

Yup, this is the life I live. No, I don't plan on becoming an English teacher, to answer your question. I've been penning these entries for the last four years, documenting sports moments and describing random occurrences. From that initial first bus ride to my internship until now, I've attempted to become a Writer.

When I started writing this blog, my mission was simple. I wanted to make people smile. Before I had the ability to conjugate verbs in this space, I was laughing at my own corny jokes, crying after crushing Knick defeats, and contemplating my place in this dangerous new world. Of course, because your writer has grown and matured over the last four years, his writing has also changed substantially. After a year, I finally learned how to use multisyllabic words. However, my initial premise has remained the same: Encourage people to laugh loud and love life.

Whatever you've thought to yourself, someone else has thought about it too. Whatever you've been through, someone else has been through it too. However weird you may think you are, someone else out there is just as weird, if not weirder. More than anything else, if you've ever felt alone and unloved, believe me…you're not alone. I love you and Jesus loves you.

Hey, we're all on the same team here.

Ideally, this post would have been written to acknowledge my 100th Facebook post, to serve as some sort of centennial celebration. On that future day, I was hoping to gather enough people together so that I can jump into the fracas and realize my lifelong dream of crowd surfing (a post to come on this later). But who knows what the future holds. Why not celebrate the diamond anniversary? I mean, I just turned 22, I'm unmarried, and I'm jobless…when else will I have the time to write poetic prose entries like these? (Let's just pray for that job thing to come fast…)

So I present to you, the full archive of my writings thus far, or better yet, Mike Benjamin's Life: Where Ordinary Happens. Yeah, you might wince at some points. You'll probably laugh at most others. But rest assured, this blog was definitely home cooked, and made with a very special seasoning…directly from the heart.

Sports Stuff

Hoop Heaven (bold= Mike's Must Reads!)

#2: "Divine Intervention…and the New York Knicks" (2006)
#5: "Cannon vs. Wilmer? Knicks vs. the League? Am I asking too many questions?"
#10: "Courtside at the Women's B-Ball Game!" (2007)
#11: "All Star Game? Las Vegas? Was This REALLY a Good Idea????"
#13: "A Quick Course in Bracketology 101: A Mike Benjamin 'Note'"
#14: "An NCAA Tourney History Lesson" (Part 1)
#15: "An NCAA Tourney History Lesson" (Part 2)
#16: "While You Were Mourning Your Dead Bracket"
#17: "Another College Basketball Dynasty…Gator Nation Unite!"
#19: "Looking at an Action-Packed NBA Playoffs-Live in 2D"
#20: "The NBA Playoffs (Part 2): Illuminating Television"
#24: "Drafting a Draft Law before NBA Draft Day 2007"
#38: "My Conspiracy Theory: Examining Duke's Fall From Grace"
#39: "The NCAA Super Sweet 16"
#40: "Rock, Chalk, Jayhawk: See You in New York, Derrick Rose!"
#41: "Lebron ft. Kobe, Biggie, and 'The Message'- "My NBA Playoffs LP""
#42: "Can I Kick It?": Obama, 21, Swat Kats, and the NBA Finals Preview"
#43: "Jackson Has His Phil as Allen Burns Sas-sage in Kobe's Kitchen"
#44: "Draft '08: I've Gotta Get You Outta My System…Seriously"
#49: "Let's Turn Our Attention to the Round Ball!"
#50: "Wait…What's THIS Happening in New York?"
#54: "The Courier's Tragedy: Christmas Day's Game-Within-The-Game"
#59: "Mo' Better Hoops": Basketball and the African Aesthetic"
#60: "Mo' Better Hoops": Examining the Origins of Africana "Form"
#61: "Mo' Better Hoops": Magic, Larry, and the Form/Function Debate"
#63: "Mo' Better Hoops": M.J.'s Epic Transcendence of the Game"
#66: "Rescuing Black College Basketball"
#74: "The Deconstruction of the Mythical Folk Hero"

Football Collies

#4: "Hey John Mellencamp, I Got the Point after Chevy Commercial #62"
#7: "NFL Playoffs, Heartbreak (Knick Style), and Tom Brady's G Rating"
#8: "After 41 Long Years, It's About Time"
#9: "The NHL or MTV Challenge: The Duel?" Colts or Bears? YOU DECIDE."
#12: "Ode to Joy: Thomas Jones, Jets, That's What's Up!"
#25: "Peeking Over the Cubicle: An Intern's Preview of the NFL Season"
#26: "Time to Lay the Most Egregious of Smackdowns"
#27: "They Are Who We Thought They Were!" (Part One)
#28: "They Are Who We Thought They Were!" (Part Deux)
#35: "We Remember…Tony Dungy and Negro Bowl I"
#36: "Uhh, Can We Play the Big Game Already?"
#37: "For The Love of the Game"
#45: "The Morning After: Rambling on Spring '08, Facebook, and SB XLII"
#55: "NFL, College Cliches, and the Top Brother-Sister Combo…Period."
#57: "The Butterfly Effect (and some championship Sunday picks)"
#58: "The Super Bowl: A Shortcut to NFL Small-Market Success"

Alternative Sports Musings

#9: "The NHL or MTV Challenge: The Duel?" Colts or Bears? YOU DECIDE."
#18: "Asking the Tough Questions While Watching the '07 Masters…"
#29: "Hey Copy Editors, Let's Focus on the MLB Postseason, Okay?"
#51: "2008: The Greatest Sports Year of Our Lives!"

Holiday Helpings

#6: "Kirk Franklin, The Meaning of Christmas (and a little Egg Nog)"
#33: "Unchain My Heart: Sean Taylor, Barry Bonds, and the NBA"
#34: "Good Vibrations: My Christmas with Mariah, Kirk, and THAT SONG"
#53: "Christmas Dessert: Where My Inner Kenan Thompson Reveals Himself"
#54: "The Courier's Tragedy: Christmas Day's Game-Within-The-Game"

Road Trips
#3: "The Life of an Intern"
#10: "Courtside at the Women's B-Ball Game!"
#21: "Live From Panama: A Country Not Controlled by George Bush!"
#22: "Panama: Let's Live For The Wonderrrrr of It All!"
#46: "Back to Life, Back to Reality…But First, Beijing 2008"
#72: "When 'Doing the Most' Goes Wrong"

Columnist Comrades
#65: "Real Recognize Real: J-Till's Search for the Answer"
#67: “Our Monster Mash – The Method to Our March Madness!” (Krystal Johnson, Michael James, J-Till)
#68: “Our Monster Mash – The Madness Continues…” (J-Till)
#69: “Our Monster Mash – Duke’s ‘Just Win Baby!’ Attitude” (DeMario Greene)

Rants, Raves, and Theories
#1: Sports, College Life, and Tackling the Facebook Note Conundrum" (1st ever)
#23: "F.R.O.G. Helps to Ease the Pain of Loss"
#30: "Matt 5:5 – Blessed Are They That Mourn, For They Will Be Comforted"
#31: "My Ginormous Plan to Alleviate the Dregs of October"
#32: "In West Philadelphia, Born and Raised…"
#37: "For the Love of the Game"
#47: "Hey, What's The Deal With the 'New' Facebook?"
#59: "Mo' Better Hoops": Basketball and the African Aesthetic"
#60: "Mo' Better Hoops": Examining the Origins of Africana "Form"
#61: "Mo' Better Hoops": Magic, Larry, and the Form/Function Debate"
#62: "How NOT to Take an L on Valentine's Day"
#63: "Mo' Better Hoops": M.J.'s Epic Transcendence of the Game"
#64: "Straight Grillin': Your Average Nerd's Study Guide!"
#71: "The Bucket List"

What I'll Miss About College
#48: "A Nod to My Writing Past: Life as a Freshman Dorm Resident" (1)
#52: "Talentless Actors, The Horror of Hulk, and HBO's Greatness" (2)
#55: "NFL, College Cliches, and the Top Brother-Sister Combo…Period." (3)
#56: "What I'll Miss About College #4: "Career Fair" (4)
#64:"Straight Grillin': Your Average Nerd's Study Guide!" (5)
#70: "YEAH! My Thesis Presentation is so NOW!" (6)
#71: "The Bucket List"(7)
#72: "When Doing the Most Goes Wrong…" (8)
#73: "It's So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday" (9)

Hopefully, that'll catch you up on my stuff (if you care) and hold you over on your jobs. Enjoy!

(*For the record, I've got Lakers in six. Too much length, too much athleticism, too many fouls to give (to Howard). And they've got the best closer in basketball. Even though his personality is a complete farce. (Count how long he fake-laughs in this clip for more proof.) I miss the '96 Kobe. But LA's got it in 6.*)


  1. I will definitely be stealing this idea. Just thought I'd tell you before I did it.