My husband, son, and grandson are very much nature lovers, outdoors people, and sports fans.
In order to converse intelligently with them, I had always read The Blade outdoors section by Steve Pollick, and I knew when he was replaced by Matt Markey, it could never “measure up.” I continued to scan it unenthusiastically, however.
Well, in the May 12 Blade, “Blossoms offer precious reminder of Mom’s way,” I was overwhelmed and whispered an apology to Matt Markey. His article was appreciated, admired, applauded, esteemed, respected, and proved much love for his mother as well as their mutual love of the outdoors.
For those of you who missed it, pull it out and enjoy. It's sure to bring a tear to your eye and a huge lump in your throat.
Matt Markey’s Mother’s Day piece in The Blade struck a chord with me. Although my mom’s love of the outdoors pretty much amounted to sitting out in the yard in a comfortable lawn chair, or on the rare occasions when she felt more daring, a picnic at one of the nearby local parks, she did love lilacs.
So as a very young child with no allowance, on May Day and Mother’s Day, I always picked my special bouquet for her — lilacs — and personally gathered dandelions and lilies of the valley. The latter grew in abundance in our backyard, and the lilacs were graciously contributed by a neighbor's bush. And although my mother also took the same Alzheimer’s path as Matt’s mom, she, too, never lost her sweet compassionate smile. Those were the same two adjectives that I, and others that loved her, always use to describe that endearing smile. It is etched in my heart and memory forever, along with the lovely scent of lilacs.
Here’s to our moms. Thanks for writing a touching article.
Raise the basket
I am writing about the NDA, aka the National Dunking Association, formerly known as the NBA or National Basketball Association.
Back quite a few years ago, the basics of basketball and its courts were mostly the same as today, but today’s athletes are commonly a foot or more taller, light years faster, and leap up to two to three feet higher. It seems as though one of the main qualifications for today’s NBA is how high one can leap. This type of game is now being transmitted down to the college and high school levels as well, much to our eventual woe and the game’s potential ruination.
I suggest that the NBA raise the basket height by at least a foot and widen the court two feet on each of the four sides as well as lengthen the 3-point and foul lines by 6 to 12 inches and adopting the larger International version of the foul lane.
These new dimensions could be phased in at progressively higher levels over a period of time. This might ensure the game’s potential for long-term success at all levels. Please refer via Google to the article featured on the cover of the Dec. 4, 1967, issue of Sports Illustrated entitled, “The case for the 12-foot basket.”