- Posted: 12:36 AM, July 11, 2012
Oh, and a trivia contest.
I’m not sure what I was thinking when I planned this day out, going from Tottenville for running back Augustus Edwards’ commitment to Reading, Pa., for Hoop Group Elite Camp, but it was unwise.
The long day began with me somehow waking up at 8 a.m. to begin the trek to Huguenot for the 10 a.m. press conference. For me, that’s like getting up at 4 a.m. I can’t take much credit – I set my alarm for 7 a.m. and barring my significant other loudly telling me to get up – she was well-versed in my insane schedule – and our large cat Tia skulking around the bedroom hoping someone would feed her, it may not have happened.
Anyway, I was up, dreary-eyed as I was, bags in tow, and hopped in a taxi to meet up with City Gridiron creator and friend Adam Salazar, who was kind enough to give me a lift from downtown Brooklyn. Predictably, we hit massive traffic on the treacherous Brooklyn/Queens Expressway and I met Adam a half-hour late. For me, by the way, that counts as early.
The traffic on the BQE was nothing compared to what we hit trying to get out of Brooklyn and then making our way through Staten Island. Adam is one patient dude – I would’ve been screaming the entire way, first at me for being late and then at the bumper-to-bumper nonsense.
The only thing which improved the trip was receiving a phone call from Jefferson standout Ebenezer Ogundeko, asking if the press conference had started for Edwards, his good friend. He was late, just like us.
“Beats me,” I told him. “All I know is I hate this borough.”
Fifteen minutes before we finally got to Tottenville, my habitual Twitter obsession paid off as one of the reporters on hand tweeted Edwards had chosen Syracuse. Just as I wrote the night before, in case you had forgotten.
Edwards was kind enough to rehash the commitment for Salazar and we hung out at the school for a half-an-hour. Ogundeko, New York State’s top prospect, was told by everyone in the room to commit to Syracuse like Edwards. He sheepishly smiled.
The ride back to Brooklyn was far more pleasant and so my subway trip to the Port Authority was rather smooth. I picked up a sandwich and head phones before hopping onto a Bieber Bus for Reading, Pa. I considered a nap, but thought better of it and got to work.
I’m a major procrastinator in everything I do, but there are times I’m just the opposite. Don’t ask why. I banged out both of my stories, Edwards’ commitment and my update on Ogundeko.
With 90 minutes to kill, I pulled out my iPad for what I hoped would be the start of my journey with The Wire, the acclaimed television show I somehow missed the boat on. For some reason, iTunes wasn’t working. So I watched a few episodes of NYPD Blue, the first season. I don’t care what anybody says, there has never been a better cop show for one season than the first year with David Caruso.
Rather than check into my hotel, I hopped a cab right to Albright College. That’s dedication. I made a beeline to the media room, which overlooks the bottom courts at Albright.
I made my way downstairs to catch some action, but before I ordered up one of Albright’s great smoothies, a strawberry and banana concoction. There, I ran into Lincoln’s Isaiah Whitehead and Da’Shawn Suber. The schedule didn’t make much sense to me – I was starting to get punchy. I could’ve sworn one of them said, “good thing he doesn’t have to take the SATs.”
A bit later, after seeing the likes of Brian Lissak, Jaquan (Son Son) Lynch, Whitehead, Shavar Newkirk and a few others in action, I decided to call it a night. It was only 9 p.m., but it felt like 3 a.m. Upon checking into the beautiful Holiday Inn – remember I can hardly see straight at this point – I ventured across the street to Malibooz, a loud bar/restaurant.
I ordered the pork tenderloin sandwich which was better than I expected. Soon after my food came, someone came on the microphone. I had stumbled into a trivia contest. Those are big in Reading, I was told. The Mooseheads took home first-place honors and $50 . The winners seemed excited.
I was too once my vanilla cheesecake desert came. It was clearly the highlight of my trip to Malibooz, until I predictably spilled a large glob on my freshly laundered shorts, the only pair I brought with me. There are two things those close to me know: I’m often late and I often wear what I eat.
At least I had an excuse this time: exhaustion. With that, I headed back to my room, happy to end the marathon day, dirty shorts and all. I pulled out the card to my room and it read “stay inspired.”
I was inspired alright – to finally get to bed.