Friday, February 29, 2008

Do I Dare Disturb The Universe?

Anyone remember that from The Chocolate War?

It's how I feel lately. I'm full of questions. Such as:
What do I want?
What don't I want?
What has meaning?
What's bullshit?
What is life?
What different does what I do during the day make when it is ultimately what I do at night that will bring happiness?

I think that last one is the big one. I'm 43. I am in midlife crisis mode I guess minus the sports car and the girl. I am starting to grasp that work isn't as important as it once was to me. Now maybe if I was writing great novels I'd feel differently about it. But I'm not writing great novels or even bad ones. And fuck, I'm not even sure I want to do that.

I know that happiness has to come from within before one can find it on the outside. I know that looking at envy at the careers and lives of others doesn't really do me any good, especially when I realize that I don't want to do what they do.

I'm not sure how hard I want to work. I used to be a very hard worker. I was using it to escape many of these thoughts I share here. I'd like to think that if I found something I was passionate about, that work ethic would return Maybe it would, I don't know.

I sometimes think about becoming a shrink or a counsellor of some sort. But then the self-doubt kicks in and the greed kicks in and before you know it I write it off as a passing phase. I used to think about teaching, but six weeks into teaching a class at a local college tells me that may not be the right thing either.

I want to be a worker among workers and be content with that. I want to accept myself. Harder than it sounds.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Same Sweat, Nicer Backdrop

I joined a new gym. I upgraded from Ballys Total Fitness, or as I call it, the Oz gym and now belong to a fancy pants gym. The first thing I noticed was the big shift in members, kind of like when I went from a Detroit public school to Montclair, New Jersey.

I did this because I figured I have the money so why not? I live on the Upper Westside and am a little tired of hauling myself down to Chelsea to a gym that, while it has what I need, is not run well and often can't even get their doors open on time. When I walked in there I felt like Randall in Clerks when he goes to the super huge video store (just to rent a bunch of hermaphrodite movies)and drops to his knees in awe of the selection.

That said, it was weird being in this nice gym today with all these beautiful people. Part of it is that, as usual, I don't think I'm worthy of something nice (you don't even want to know the internal debates I have about buying new socks). Another part is my general rebellion in life against the haves. Of course, I'm a have too, but I hate acknowledging it. To borrow from Bruce, "it's a sad funny ending when you find yourself pretending, a rich man in a poor man's shirt." I'm not a rich man, but I'm not poor either. I can go to a gym that actually has towels and whose locker room floor doesn't belong at the CDC for analysis.

Still, already I miss the rag-tag faithful at Ballys. I'm keeping that membership. It's too cheap to let go and a year from now I might decide to trade down. A gym is a gym and unless I'm going to be taking all those classes or using the steam room every time or stealing the towels, what am I paying for besides the opportunity to leer at girls who I can just as easily leer at on the street?

Oh yeah, they wear a lot less clothes in the gym than they do on the street.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Sitting in group therapy today I got emotional, which is rare for me. So rare that I said I wanted to take a razor and slash my face up. I meant it too. I've had that feeling before. I'll never act on it, but I have such contempt for my own feelings, my own pain, my own shit that I'd be willing to consider permanently disfiguring myself rather than sit in it. Oh well, guess that's why I'm in therapy.

The hole's deep enough. Time to stop digging and figure out how to climb out.

What I Want

Remember when Michael says that to the Turk in the Italian Restaurant in the Bronx (best veal in the city) in The Godfather?

I like that Michael he knew what he wanted at that point in time. I am struggling with that. Today I took another step into deciding what I don't want when I met with the editor of a fairly prominent sports magazine. The guy basically made it clear that I was not what he wanted. It was somewhat brutal. I never felt older and more past my prime (hell, did I ever even have one--"what about my prime Mick, at least you had a prime") then I did in his office for the longest thirty minutes of my life. Perhaps a few years ago I would've drunk 12 beers and had an 8-ball at him just to make myself feel better.

Now I don't have that urge. I'm glad the guy was kind of a dick. I don't know what I want and didn't need to be in his office wasting his time hoping he'd tell me what I want or that he wanted me.

I need to figure this out and if I have to do it by determining what I don't want one bad informational interview at a time, then so be it. I've got the patience now.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Obama's Real Inspiration--Can You Dig It?

"Miracles is the way things ought to be."

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Moment Of Grace

Remember throwing up and feeling like I was fainting
You wouldn't help me, didn't want to stop painting
Used to keep us working on that lawn
Raking leaves and pulling weeds until every last one was gone

Used to drive me to temple
Could never get us there on time
Should've been simple
But all you did was whine

Couldn't be bothered to be a Dad at all
Didn't know how to love or even how to play ball
Couldn't be bothered to be a Dad at all
Didn't know how to love, could only make me feel small

Took off to the city and left us in in the Garden State
Lost the house and the car
Ended up in the `hood' and was almost laid to waste
Now I cling to those scars

Don't know why you were so mad
Couldn't understand the rage in you
Only felt better when everyone else was sad
Couldn't comprehend the hate in you

Couldn't be bothered to be a Dad at all
Didn't know how to love or even how to play ball
Couldn't be bothered to be a Dad at all
Didn't know how to love, could only make me feel small

Can't carry this with me forever
Can't throw in back in your face
Can't let this rule me never
Have to find that moment of grace

Smith Corona

I was roaming the flea market on Sixth and 17th Saturday when a piece of my childhood popped up and hit me in the face. No, I didn't see my old rubber duck or Apollo 11 Snoopy doll. Sitting on a table was a Smith Corona typewriter. Not just any old Smith Corona, a late sixties-early seventies model that my father owned. Even the big bulky black case was the same.

I just stared at the thing for a long time. It is just a typewriter, but I remember my Dad lugging it around. I remember him working on it. I remember me playing with it. It was in great shape. And apparently there are still some stores that sell ribbons for these things.

But I didn't buy it to type with it. I'm not sure why I bought it. I may give it to my father, although I'm pretty sure he still has his in his little office in his house upstate. I may keep it myself in the hopes that one day I'll have a desk or a bookshelf I can put it on. Or I may take it out to the park and smash the shit out of it a la "Office Space" and the printer.

Most of the memories I have associated with this typewriter aren't happy. It's kind of like the time my Dad gave me his old army jacket, which was splattered with paint from years of using it to paint stuff. That jacket was what he was always wearing every weekend when he was terrorizing us so I wasn't exactly thrilled to be the recipient of it. Imagine a prison guard handing an inmate his jacket as the inmate is getting ready to leave the slammer. I know, over the top, but that's my style.

As I lugged the typewriter home I begin to wonder how the heck my Dad lugged this thing all over the country. As my brother pointed out, yeah and you can't type something into that thing and get an answer from Google. My brother also thought my Dad would probably be very touched to get it. I'm not sure since he does have one already although he probably would appreciate the gesture.

I do know though that the idea of smashing it up as if somehow that will take away some pain is a crock. I'm the only one who can let that pain go and it's up to me to do it, not my Dad.

I'm not going to smash it. I'm not sure if I'll give it to him. For now I have plenty of room under my bed to let it stay there until I decide what to do with it.

Friday, February 22, 2008

One Way Conversation

Leave the money on the table
And I'll get your blindfold and gag
You want the boots or the spikes?

Is that oil warm enough or should I heat it a little?

Don't move, don't shake. I can stop if you like.

How does that feel? Did it hurt?
Watch the hands or I'll get the cuffs.

Not yet. No.

Like that or does it burn?
I hope it burns.

When I say so. No sooner.

You can go now.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


Didn't return my call
But then I didn't say you needed to
Lost in your brown eyes
Don't want to see us fall

You come close, then when I lean in
You pull away
You reach out and then when I respond
You slip the day

I so wanted to hold you on 14th Street
Get lost in your hair
Wanted to make it concrete how I feel
Instead of just hoping you feel my heat

Don't think you know what you're doing to me
But that's not on you, my fire is my own
Just want a few more moments
Can't you see?

This A Debate Or A Sitcom?

How about doing a debate with NO audience? That way, we can actually focus on what they candidates are saying and they can focus on making sense and answering questions instead of saying what will generate the most applause.

And CNN should tell these idiots who interrupt the debate every few minutes with their hyena-like screaming to shut the fuck up.

Plus, could these fuckers answers a question? Asked to describe the moment they were most tested, neither answered the question. Both just babbled and played to the crowd. Worst of all, neither anchor said, uh how about actually answering the question. That's just one example, it went on all night.

That said, Campbell Brown is hottie and a bad girl.

Flat Front? Yes. Dry Front? Not So Sure

At the risk of sharing too much (I know, is that really an issue here?), I am having an issue with my flat front pants.

For starters, I actually prefer pleats. I think they look classy. That said, I know everyone thinks pleats are for old men and flat fronts look better, so I caved.

I do like the flat front. It has a slimmer look. But there is this one problem. Anyone remember that old chestnut "no matter how hard you shake and dance the last drop always falls in your pants?" That really is true with the flat fronts. I do my best to make sure Rambler Jr. goes back into his box dry as possible. I squeeze, wipe, etc. And without fail, I look down a few minutes later and...

I checked with another flat front wearing friend who is a little older than me and he confirms this is a challenge. I sense an opportunity here for the pants manufacturers. Just a little more lining might solve the problem. I know as we all get older the pipes get leaky; still this is a high price to be for fashion.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I Need A Belt

Literally. Forgot to wear my belt today. I hate when that happens. Feel naked. Problem was I didn't go to the gym this morning and forgot to grab the belt out of the gym bag when I was getting dressed. Clearly my head was somewhere else. Good thing these pants are tight.

Attraction, Not Promotion

Another rash of "I got sober aren't I wonderful" books are coming out. Hitting shelves next week is "High Sobriety: Confessions of a Drinker" by Alice King. It is described by the publisher as a "shocking true story of a love affair with alcohol and its terrible consequences."

Ms. King, a wine writer (no, really? And she developed a problem? Wow!), details her descent into hell. From a promotional blurb: "By the time she found herself regularly waking up at 4:35 in the morning, vomiting into the kitchen sink, and wondering what had happened to the bottle of vodka that had been full when she came home the previous evening but was now mysteriously empty, she realized she had a problem. She needed a drink."

Hey, I'm glad she stopped drinking. But I'm a little tired of this genre. I read a lot of these books before I got sober. The only one worth a damn was Caroline Knapp's "Drinking: A Love Story." Most of these books romanticize the drinking and drugging and debauchery while pretending to be salvation stories. Or the writer is full of shit, like James Frey. Knapp's book was straight ahead without pretension or the lethal combination of I was so fucked up and now I'm so wonderful elements that fill so many of these pour me books.

But that's not really my beef. Many of the people who write these books do it soon after they clean up. How about you get some real time straight before sharing your experience, strength and hope with us? Even Knapp was relatively new to sobriety when she cranked out her book. Good thing in her case since she ultimately was taken by cigarettes.

I know, I know. Rambler, (I'm told some people get a kick out of me addressing myself in the third person) if one person is helped then it's all worth it. And maybe there is something to be said for that. However, all the reading I did about other people's bottoms didn't do shit for me except make me anticipate writing my own book and take their inventory.

Monday, February 18, 2008


She took a drag off my smoke, then jammed it out on my thigh.
"Fuck you," she said, as if the cigarette hadn't already made that statement.

I would've screamed, but I won't give you the satisfaction of hurting me. It's no different than the orgasms. Can't give you the satisfaction of my pleasure. Can't show weakness by giving up that control. Of course, you only burned me because I can't give up that control. It's what I do. Drive you to hurting me so you forget that I've been hurting you all along.

But you don't forget, nor should you.

I waited until you left and then put some ice on my thigh.


"Why?" He just laid there. I grabbed the cigarette out of his hand, took a long drag, watched the burning ash and all of a sudden without even thinking about it smashed it down on his thigh and held it there. I could feel skin burning and the fucker didn't scream. That hurt me more than if he had.

I threw the cigarette on the floor, stubbed it out with my heel, grabbed my coat and headed to the door.


A half-hour later I'm in the bathroom at the Dive Bar pressed up against a wall. He keeps slamming into me. I'm pushing back, meeting his thrusts. He's getting close. I'm not. I tense. I don't want him to finish yet. I can't be robbed twice in one day. I slow down, but he's already done. I feel it. Or to be more precise, I'm not feeling it anymore. There is a slow stream of him running down my leg and actually dripping into my heel. I hear him raising his zipper as I reach into my purse, find my baggie and bump myself up. I want him to leave so I can at least finish myself, but then I see a roach running across the floor and the mood, if you can call it that, is over. I hear him asking if I'm coming. It takes me a second to realize he means am I leaving the bathroom with him. I wave my hand away, not even looking. And when I hear the door slam shut, I vomit into the bowl without even missing a beat.


Saturday, February 16, 2008


Just one more time
Just one more taste
Just one more late night
Just one more waste

don't want to feel this crap
don't want to hear this noise
don't need to be in this space
don't need to watch my back

Take it away from me
relieve me from the burden
Take it away from me
ease me from the bondage

i'm free of the chains
so why do i want to put them back on
i'm free of that pain
so why do i want to cut myself through

I get tired of the bullshit
I get bored with the con
I get frustrated and decimated
feel like it's all a lie

I know what I am
I know where I've been
I know what I want
I know what I can't have

You speak of promises
Someday perhaps I'll know
For now I'm not sure what they are
But I'm not ready to go

You Won't

Just one time
Just one moment
Can you
Give me that

The morning after
I don't know how I got here
where was I

Didn't need to go like that
I know, you thought you had no choice
you took a permanent solution
to your temporary problem

saw you hit hard
you won't bounce back
this time

you're done now
and maybe there's more
don't know

watching over you now
you won't feel
you won't hurt
hope that it was worth it
because you left it all to us

and you won't have to claim it anymore

Again Now

Dig around looking for answers
As if answers can some how undo time

We'll hear the same things
It's all the same
People with nothing to do with any of it
paid the price

Why the compulsion to taking others out
Did it make your hell seem more bearable

Why the need to make noise
Isn't the noise in your head enough to silence
You can blackout your own sun, that's fine
But why'd you have to blast their sun too

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Press Two For English?

Chase Bank's ATM machines automatically default to Spanish if you don't select a language. At the risk of sounding like a xenophobe (although I don't think that word fits this scenario), that is insane.

I have nothing against ATM machines or any automated services offering different languages to their customers to conduct business. But English should be the default language if no choice is made.

OK, I'll go back to angst, strap-ons, the Redskins, abuse and my usual assortment of topics.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Strap One On

So I'm living in Los Angeles and I'm dating this screenwriter. I met her at an Emmy party. Rambler used to live in the fast lane. Anyway, one night we're at the Formosa having a few beers. I, as usual, steer the conversation towards sex. Below is a transcript which, although this happened about ten years ago, I'm guessing is pretty accurate.

Screenwriter: Did you ever do anything you later regretted?

Me: (drags on cigarette) You mean regarding a person or an act?

Screenwriter: An act.

Me: (rubbing hand against head as if in deep thought) No, nothing I can think of.

Screenwriter: Oh, never mind.

Me: No way! You can't not tell me now.

Screenwriter: I don't feel comfortable.

Me: Come on. What was it, threesome?

Screenwriter: No, that I'd do again.

Me: (gulp!) So what then?

Screenwriter: Well, I was seeing this guy and he asked me to fuck him with a strap-on. I did it, but I just don't think I could do that again.

Me: Damn, guess I'll have to return my strap-on.

Screenwriter: Oh, I still have mine.

Me: Uh, thanks but if I was interested I think I'd buy a new one!

Alas, we only had a few more dates. She was one of the best kissers I was ever with but unfortunately I never closed the deal.

Years later I dated another chick with a strap-on thing. She really did try to impale me. She was a good kisser too. Wonder if there is a correlation there.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Every Time

I've made so many of you feel like shit
All you wanted was something I didn't have
Yet you'd keep coming at me hoping that you'd be the one to get through
The one to get the promise fulfilled.

And none of you were and that makes me feel unforgivable.
It wasn't part of the plan...
I thought you'd be the one too
But my hate for me outweighed your love for me
It'll win every time

Look Out Your Window

There's snow flying past my eyes
There's a wind blowing through my room
The sky is getting so dark
Hope it doesn't end anytime soon

I'm trying to find my voice
It's in that wind too
I'm trying to find my purpose
Not the primary one, the secondary one

Do I want someone to love
Or do I want to be one who can be loved
I think I have to do the second before the first
Wish I could lie and make it all sound good

But fuck it, this is what you get
I'm not deep, I'm not hip, I'm not your dreams
I'm just one motherfucker trying to get through the day

Just trying to keep my head up
Keep my leg off the third rail
Keep your head from going through a wall
Resisting all those urges that tell me what I know is wrong

I'm just one motherfucker, clear a path.

Hillary's Right

To be pissed off about MSNBC's idiot anchor David Shuster remark that her campaign is "pimping out" Chelsea. And I hope she sticks to her gun and pulls out of the cable network's upcoming debate. Our society is coarse enough and if Clinton can make a stand on this good for her.

BTW, my issue is with the words Shuster used, not his thought about how Chelsea Clinton is assisting in the campaign.

I know, pimping isnt' easy.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Transparency Or Idiocy?

Good story in today's (yes that means Saturday) Wall Street Journal about a seemingly mild-mannered women who chucks her marriage and family to help a prison inmate she's fallen in love with escape. Both were caught soon after and who knows why this woman did this beyond what she felt was love for the inmate (possible) and the feelings of being trapped (most definite).

Not here to offer my ten cents on any of that. What I'm babbling about is the part in the story that explains that the woman's now ex-husband declined to be interviewed. Story tells us the reporter tried his home phone, cell phone and place or work. We get it, you tried and he didn't want to talk. This is the new age of journalism. Apparently, it's not enough to just say someone declined to comment. You have to show the extreme lengths you went to in trying to get that comment. Maybe I'm old school. Tell me the guy declined to comment and I'll take it at face value. Tell your editor how hard you tried to get him to speak, you don't have to tell me. Heck, I read that and thought "jeez, once it became apparent the guy didn't want to talk, couldn't you have let it go?"

I think I ranted about this once before, but I'm not transparent and I couldn't be reached for comment.

Since we're critiquing the media this morning, what's with the NYT Obama story. I don't weigh in on politics. I have not decided which one of these candidates is least offensive to me, but that the NYT puts drugs and Obama in the same headline with an old photo that looks like he was an extra in "What's Happening" seems questionable. Yes, the headline is that drugs didn't play a big part in Obama's life. But guess what? Doesn't matter. The headline has drugs and Obama in it and that's all people will need to go to town. I'm not saying don't do the story. I'm saying headlines are dangerous things. The story may be very positive for Obama, but right now I'm guessing the only people really feeling good about it regardless of what it says is the Clinton campaign.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

What I'm Doing, Why Do You Care? Why Do I Care?

Rambler just took a crap
Rambler just added a friend
Rambler's ex-GF just got an STD from some loser
Rambler's friend is upset because she saw that her ex is already dating someone else

Yeah, this is a facebook rant. I need to get off that thing and I'm barely on it. There is no point for me to be on it. I don't need the validation of someone who is already a friend adding me as a friend and I'm not so insecure that I get a good feeling about a passing acquaintance adding me as a friend.

I've got a healthy ego, but I don't think my every move needs to be noted and blasted out to a bunch of people that I mostly don't talk to on a regular basis or even think about except for the occasional trip to the spank bank.

I don't care where in the world someone has been and I don't play Scrabble.

There is a bigger issue here. All this so-called connectedness is FAKE. It is an illusion. We are all becoming less connected. We're just a bunch of voices talking at each other instead of engaging with each other. And yes, I realize the hypocrisy of writing that on a blog. I get it. I'm part of the problem too. That said, at least here this is about me trying to do something for myself. If you like it, that’s great. If you identify, even better. If you hate it, that's cool too. I'm not trying to pimp myself or you out to some new software product or an advertisement.

I don't even go on that thing all that much. It seems like glorified email to me. Of course, this is a new era. We don't really want friends. We just want the appearance of friends. We don't really want to play guitar. We just want to play rock star. I don't really want to be a writer; I just want to rant about shit here. I'm guilty too.
I'm guilty too.
I'm guilty too.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Carl Icahn's Blog

So billionaire takeover dude/shareholder activist is going to start a blog. Wouldn't it be funny if his blog wasn't about money, bad management or any other financial shit but just day-to-day life at his office?

I'm picturing:

Man, what did I eat last night? Can't get off the crapper to save my life. Hope that cute number in research doesn't catch a whiff.
Fuck, did that bitch forget to order paper clips again? Man, I gotta get a new assistant.

I know, highly unlikely but I can dream can't I? And who knows, maybe just by having Carl Icahn in my blog I'll get some random new readers.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Chasing The Sun

Trapped in a tight space
High above the trouble
Chasing the sun
In the midnight rumble

It hangs just out of reach
It shouldn't be there
It's 10:00 at night
At least it is somewhere

The sun still hasn't moved
And I'm not getting any closer
Like a cat chasing its tail
I can only fall in frustration

I want to run towards it
To dance across the clouds and leap into the flame
I'll be safe there

The Hunt

Charlie Sheen was once asked why he paid for sex. He replied that he didn't pay for sex; he paid for women to leave after sex.

I know the feeling. And it sucks.

But that's not what I'm going to babble about here. Instead, I'll try to explain why I've once again let this Internet thing get out of hand. It sucks away my time and makes my life unmanageable and yet I can't surrender.

Maybe if I put the shit out here, it will help me come to terms and recognize that I need to chill a little. First of all, it's not about the whacking. If that's all it was then this would be no big deal. I'd take five minutes, rub one out and be done with it.

No, for me and for millions like me it is about the search. It is about the hunt for that new clip that will beat (ha ha) all the other clips I beat to and bring me to a new level of orgasm. It'll be the perfect clip. And since it is the perfect clip I seek, the search is never-ending.

It was the same thing with phone sex for me. I would go hours talking to girls and then stop myself before I could finish on the off chance that there might be a better girl out there. Of course, truth is a lot of phone sex girls aren't very good at their jobs so finding the right one can take time. My problem was that I'd find the right one and then drag that shit out forever.

At least the search for the next great clip is free. You don't want to know how much money I pissed away on phone sex.

I could argue that I'm not hurting anyone. This doesn't cost me money, just time so what's the big deal?

Well, the truth is that this is all about escape. And it's not the big bad world I'm escaping when I do this, it's me. For some reason, whether it's ADD or some other shit, I can't just read a book when I get home or watch TV or listen to music. I have to search. It's really not that different from drinking and drugging. It's me isolating from the world and myself.

I've been told that I put too much personal shit on this thing. Well I figure the more I expose and the more I blow the lid off my shit the better the odds are that maybe I'll start to change what I can change and accept what I can't. And that's what it's all about for me today.

Feeling Guilty, Feeling Scared, Hidden Cameras Everywhere!

Apologies to Ray Davies.

Haven't been to the gym since Sunday. I know, two days, big fucking deal. But for me two days is a big deal. Haven't been able to get out of bed in the morning, in part because I've been going to bed later. Sunday was Super Bowl; last night was reading papers for the class I'm teaching. These kids are not the brightest. Of 15 students, one did a really good job and two or three others won't have to completely rewrite their stories. Whatever.

I'm tense lately and also been doing the self-abuse thing like it is going out of style. Yes, I've found some new Internet sites to explore but four times in a day! What the hell am I trying to escape?

Went on another Internet date. Perfectly fine but I didn't feel any spark. Of course I also realize that without booze, you actually really have to be interested in someone to want to be intimate with them. Radical!

In the meantime, the girl I briefly dated, the one with the etiquette issues (you know, jerk a guy off but then drop him via email, yeah that one) asked me to be her friend on Facebook. I said yes. I was tempted to write in the part where it said how do you know each other that we met online, got to third base and then she had buyer's remorse.

I know I sound like I'm still angry over that and maybe I am a little but I really think I'm just kind of like "what was that all about anyway?" It's the detective in me that wants to know what the deal was. Have to remember that none of that shit really matters.

In the meantime, I sometimes wake up in the morning and wonder if I ever really want to wake up next to someone on a daily basis. Maybe that's just not me. And if it isn't, would that be so bad?

OK, I promised myself I'd actually do some fucking work today so I'm putting the anxiety aside for right now and will go back to writing letters for my latest lame panel. And I already rubbed one out this morning so I don't know why I'm so tense.

Rambler out!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

28 and 81

Long overdue for 81. Under appreciated in his career and his post career, 81 didn't make noise. He did his job. Same for 28.
Number 17 summed it up best noting that critics complained that 81 "only" averaged 13 yards a catch in his career. "Last time I checked," 17 said, "that's a first down every time you touch the football."

I know, why babble in your space about a couple of rich football players? In the age of the spoiled athletes and an era of me first players, these two were grateful for what they were given and did their job. They didn't need the limelight and were confident enough in their own abilities that they didn't need or desire to be larger than life. Real life was good enough.