Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The One-on-One Win

You don't know this about me and wouldn't care anyway, but I'm not big on athletics, the professional sports trade, that sort of thing. I don't even enjoy playing games, any games; there's something about game time that sets off an internal ticking clock, and instead of finding solace or enjoyment in playing or even watching games, I become aware of life's precious moments slipping away. Ticktock, ticktock, ticktock. Games, hopeless time bandits stealing away one's waking moments with inspired, yet contrived, maneuvers of ultimate futility. Weird, huh?
Maybe the root cause was that time in elementary school gym class when I took a baseball hit directly to my face. Or maybe everything fell apart years later when I played occasional poker games in the Air Force and always lost money. Some of us at the Moody AFB hospital in Georgia would play volleyball now and then, I guess that was okay. Just. I think I really started to swear off the game thing as an Air Force medic, when I had to attend military track and field events to bandage or otherwise help repair sports injuries incurred by participants who suffered trauma because -- let's face it -- they asked for it. We're not talking battlefield injuries here, just mishaps incurred by contenders desirous of putting their testosterone, estrogen and/or arrogance levels on public display. Nor could you drag me to a sports-themed motion picture any day of the week. Ticktock, ticktock, ticktock.

Yet, strangely, there was this movie about basketball I liked, it was entitled "One on One." It came out in ancient 1977 and was a story about a kid with a college basketball scholarship who faced almost insurmountable odds to succeed don't know, whatever the heck you want to succeed in by throwing a ball into a hole repeatedly. Come to think of it, I never had a dog that couldn't do that, but, of course, this wasn't a movie about dogs.

I mention this because I've just begun trying to convert a plethora of old LPs into digital format, and I happen to have the "One on One" music soundtrack scheduled for my amateurish attempts. Actually, I have a lot of old movie soundtracks and original cast LPs around, and I just know that by the time I get them all digitalized I'll probably be very old, on my deathbed, blanketed in stacks of archaic compact discs I won't get to hear anyway. Well, at least you athletes reading this will be happy to entertain that little thought.

I'm including the photo on the back of the "One on One" LP. It's interesting because, aside from being a tad goofy by intention, it shows people behind the scenes as well as the movie's star, Robby Benson. That's song lyricist Paul Williams on the left, and way over on the right that's music composer Charles Fox. Hovering a step above in the bleachers are the famous Seals and Crofts, who sing a few songs on the album. I don't know which is which anymore. I probably never did.

The young guy sitting in the middle is actor and sometimes singer Robby Benson. He was popular in his teens, a heartthrob to all the young girls, and he made the rounds on old TV variety programs such as "The Mike Douglas Show." From my personal fund of useless knowledge, of which I'm overstocked, I recall that Benson wrote the "One on One" script with his father, Jerry Segal, and the movie fared respectably in theaters. Incredibly, though quite athletic and enthusiastic about basketball all his life, young Benson and his family long realized that his heart had a serious lifelong defect requiring eventual repair, a procedure not without hazards back then. To the relief of his family and the delight of his fans, Benson came through surgery fine and toured the country to encourage cardiac research. I've always marveled at the speed of medical progress; back in the 1950s a young cousin who endured a "hole" in his heart from birth died on the operating room table when an essential correction was attempted by, at that time, the best --yet extremely dangerous -- efforts that surgeons could offer.

So where was I today? Oh, I know. Somewhere in all of this I wanted to acknowledge that the USA has a new President waiting in the wings. Sen. Barack Obama and the Democrats won some serious political territory on November 4, essentially in a political "one-on-one." The results, in my humble opinion, really should put an end to "The Fairness Doctrine's" potential resurgence (dream on. . .). He's quite the speaker, certainly, but we really don't know much regarding his agenda. Change? Change what? How? Yes we can? No, we can't, can we? I don't even know what that means.

Nevertheless, Obama is now perched to have a crack at fixing a wealth of national and international troubles. And will he help us find out more about UFOs? That's the question. I anxiously await the efforts of dedicated researcher Grant Cameron as he prepares yet another page for his Presidential UFO Web site (see link), where he, no doubt, will document a potential trail of UFO-related crumbs falling from the pockets of an Obama administration. In the meantime, we trust also that journalists such as the great Billy Cox (see link) will pursue even the slightest whisperings of a UFO tell-all uttered by official sources. But would I bet on a UFO breakthrough? Would I bet on a basketball team, let alone play a one-on-one game of UFO truth with the U.S. government? Ticktock. . . ticktock. . . ticktock. . .