Rewind to Sunday afternoon, I was watching my Jets get crushed and eagerly anticipating the NBA season. I had already purchased my League Pass, and was counting down the minutes until 7PM EST on Tuesday like a little kid counts down to Christmas. God was I excited! For so many reasons I was excited. The NBA is entering a new golden age. The Knicks, while not a real title threat, are at least relevent, but most of all because I had thrown myself into this thing called social media.
Rewind six months earlier, to the beginning of April. I launched my own website and entered the twitter world for the first time. Now instead of enjoying my favorite pastime by myself, I now had a whole new world to watch my sport with. Suddenly and slowly I had more and more people enjoying (hopefully) my inane comments and absurd observations. The internet and the fun world we like to call “basketball twitter” roped me in, and was never going to let me go. So it’s no wonder I was eagerly anticipating the season. So much so that since the end of the Olympics my twitter feed had been counting down the first NBA game this season to the minute.
However, there was a dark cloud hovering over the beginning of the season for those of us on the east coast, especially those of us living on and Island only 20 miles wide from north to south end in most places. A large, dark cloud by the quirky endearing name of Sandy. Doesn’t sound to threatening does it? Don’t be fooled, Sandy was a destructive bitch. Winds picking up late on Sunday night, and devastating rain joining the mix on Monday morning. I’m not gonna lie, it was pretty freaking scary, and I am not a man who is easily fazed. We made it through all day Monday though without losing our power and our cable, I was thanking my lucky stars. God forbid I miss out on opening night. In retrospect, I realize what a selfish jerk I was worrying about something so mundane.
Tuesday morning, 12:30 AM EST. I’m reading a book, and getting ready for bed. I hear a pop, 10 minutes later another one and out goes the power. Now I don’t curse often, but the string of obscenities that flowed through my lips would have made Samuel L. Jackson blush. I wasn’t going to be able to watch the NBA in 18 hours and 30 minutes. I stayed up for the next hour feeling sorry for myself. Soon after I finally drifted asleep.
I awoke the next morning and the wind was still kicking but had died down significantly. I decided to go out in the back and smoke a cigarette. This was the fist time I got an idea of how bad things really got. I looked across the street and there was a tree crushing the neighbor’s car. Crap! I went and started looking around the neighborhood. Two houses down a tree went through the roof and took out the master bedroom of the house. Thankfully the elderly woman who lived their had taken shelter at her son’s house. As I walked around the block I saw more crushed cars and two more houses with massive damage. Soon after word started trickling in, massive flooding on both shores (luckily I live smack in the middle of the island). Fires where the fire department could not get to houses because of limited access, generators failing at hospitals in the city, people electrocuted because of stepping into puddles near down powered lines. And here I was worrying about basketball, not knowing for a second during my inane selfishness what others around me were going through. Never even considering just how lucky I really was. Now here I was, less than 12 hours to an event I had been counting down for over three months, and suddenly it was the furthest thing from my mind.
Its Wednesday afternoon now. Nowhere close by has power. I had to travel a half hour to just find a Starbucks with electricity and internet while most of the streets are still without traffic lights. I missed all three games yesterday night, and due to the lack of electricity I am only using my phone for emergencies so that means I have to avoid the temptation to check box scores at night or even partake much in social media. So, I really don’t have much opinion on last nights games, or even tonight’s to share with you. So why even write? For several reasons, first off, I really needed to get out. Sitting at home for two days without power drives you a little mad. Most of all though, I just needed to put things in perspective.
72 hours ago I was dreading the idea of losing power. 48 hours ago I was cursing the world when my power went out. At the time, I did not know how lucky I was. While people around me were losing their cars, their homes and some extreme cases their lives, I was worried about watching basketball. Now, after driving around the Island, at least where I can get to, and surveying all the damage that was done, I know better. I was too young to remember Hurricane Gloria in 1985. A storm that lived in infamy as the worst storm to hit Long Island in most people’s memories. Everyone that does remember it claims that this has been much worse. I survived the storm. I had no damage to my home. My entire family is safe. I have heard from most of my friends. For now basketball can wait. Some of us have lives to put back together. I eagerly await the return of my power so I can enjoy some basketball, however I am no longer angry that I cannot watch. To those that live near me, or anywhere that was hit by this storm, I wish you the best. I sincerely hope that you and everyone you care about is ok. To those that were not affected, please keep those of us that were in your prayers. Enjoy your basketball. I’ll be back with you with a daily review as soon as I can, but for now, it is back to the dark ages and helping those I can.