Run for fun or fitness or charity but don’t expect travel expenses
Funds through fun - My idea of a fundraiser is for a community to pool money and give it to a family that is battling a protracted and dangerous illness that is draining their bank account. I honestly believe a Department of Medical Research should be first on the federal government's budget, then let's see what’s left over for stealth bombers and crop subsidies or foreign aid to countries that will never pay it back. Huge fundraisers send millions of dollars to national chapters and that’s cool, but if I’m writing an attention-getting check, I’m handing it to a person I know - it’s just how I roll. A fundraiser to send an athlete to an elite camp or sending a local person to a foreign country to run a marathon for a cause I’m not on board with, which means there’s room for two more people on the boat.
Outlet Liquors - We are a hypersensitive society; just ask Riley Cooper of the Eagles. There was a time in my sportswriting career long ago and far away when I refused to include the name of an alcohol sponsor in a sports story or title of an event. Recreational athletes have become a target demographic in case you haven’t noticed. Now we have banks sponsoring professional stadiums. I have my own stadium names: In Baltimore it's Ravens Stadium, and in Philly I say Missing Link. In D.C it’s RG3 Park. Banks have done way more harm in our country than Coors Lite, the beer to drink if you’re not a serious drinker. But if you’re Jose Cuervo Tequila guy at a beach volleyball tournament, then dude, you have issues. A 5K race that combines the words liquors and lifeguards in the same sentence sends more mixed messages than a Long Island iced tea. Part of the proceeds of the Dewey Outlet Liquors 5K will go to the Dewey Beach Patrol to cover expenses to the USLA National Lifeguard competition in California. A bunch of fit Dewey guards worked at the race and ran in the race. I know most of them - OK, I taught their parents in high school - and I find them inspirational. They are all smart, community-oriented college types who have no idea what time the liquor store opens. But I do in case I need ice.
Pitty sense - I did a photo shoot at Safe Haven animal shelter Aug. 2, my first visit because I have been visiting shelters and taking pictures my entire life back to my twin reflex camera days. I’ve gone from twin reflex to no reflex. I was asked, “Do you want to know the names of the dogs?” and I replied, “Nope, I’ll just call them all Spike.” Mixed-breed pit bulls overpopulate the neighborhoods of most rescue missions, sanctuaries, shelters and pounds. It’s a crying shame what boneheaded humans have done to the image of this breed. Every owner of a rescued pitty I ever talked to said the same thing, “Best dog I ever owned, so sweet. I am in love with my dog.” Dan McPike and Karli “McCall” Swope, former Cape athletes, both work at Safe Haven and battle against all odds because they just love animals. Be proud of them, because I know I am.
Snippets - Let’s say that Laurel in Senior League and the Sussex County representative in Big League both win the World Series softball title this weekend in Roxana and televised live on ESPN. And trust me, it could happen. How does the sports public make sense of it all? That would make Sussex County the softball capital of the universe, which would mean what exactly? I pose questions, don’t have the answers but I would expect to look at the rosters of the top 20 college teams in America and to find some Sussex County players. Kim Smith of Sussex Tech plays for Hofstra (been in and out of top 25) where Lindsey Reid of Caravel is a teammate. Cape’s Tiara Duffy, upcoming senior and two-time all-state player in field hockey and softball, an Afro-American academic superstar ranked third in her class and the nicest person ever, is still on the college not committed board and I ask myself, “How is that even possible?” I see Big T as an Ivy League student athlete, but I don’t want to use up all my contacts. I still have grandchildren to market. Go on now, git!