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Commentary Quote

Olympics: What I Want To See/Paralympics

“Self doubt is a much greater disability than a guy who’s missing both his Calhounlegs.”–Heath Calhoun

Unless you’ve been living under an abandoned fiberglass pickup camper top in the high grass back in the corner of the yard, beside the compost pile, you’ve probably seen this commercial from AT&T.  I’ve seen it at least a dozen times, though I didn’t remember what exactly it was advertising.  As a sentimental, soppy-eyed old fart I was transfixed by the imagery.

I wondered: who the hell is this guy?  But my TV is too old and small to read the tiny white print that says his name, so I kept wondering for a week or so until I finally found some answers.

http://www.bustle.com/articles/15108-who-is-heath-calhoun-10-facts-about-the-paralympics-skier-att-commercial-star

Very quickly, I wanted to know more.  The more I read, the more I found.  It turns out that Mr. Calhoun has a fan or two…or two million.

Forget the figure skating, the curling that we pretend to think it’s cool because it’s so strange and liking something that boring has a certain ironic cachet, I want to see this badass and his competitors burn down the mountain, and I want to see it front and center, in prime time.  In the age of so-called “reality tv” with it’s scripted “reality” its fix-is-in pretensions of competition, and its limp, vapid, sub-division values, why not give us the true reality of folks like Mr. Calhoun, whose response to getting dumped on by a shitstorm of rotten luck is to suck it up and show the rest of us how to live?

Inspiring, right?  Moving. Brings a joyful tear to your eye?  Sure it does, but let’s not forget the simple fact that, in the end, this wild-minded legless guy is hurtling down a mountain on a chair, strapped to a mono-ski.

Follow Mr. Calhoun on Twitter here:

 

 

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A Snowy Sunday Morning

Before you read further and get all indignant, let me remind you I’m a big fan of Jesus–my upbringing in the bosom of the Methodist Church formed the framework for much of my morality–and, of course, my cynicism, my expectations of inevitable hypocracy and, ironically enough, my deeply sentimental conviction that there is good in the world (maybe not a lot, maybe not enough, but enough to be foolishly hopeful.)  The thing I would have liked to hear more about in church was Badass Jesus, Defiant Jesus, Superhero Jesus, Jesus tearing up the temple and putting the crooks on their asses, Jesus the Original Left-Wing Troublemaker,balage_jesus_and_the_money_changers-t1 Jesus sticking it to The Man, Jesus fighting the system like Robin Hood, like the Dukes of Hazard and, ultimately, Jesus taking a metaphorical bullet for talking too much and shaking up the power class, like Bobby Kennedy, MLK, Malcolm X. I’m pretty sure Jesus would have been a cool guy to sit down with, have a beer, and talk about those crazy Occupy kids and our favorite episode of My Name Is Earl–I mean, Jesus was a tradesman, at the end of the day, a carpenter. And a guy like that, you can bet he had a sense of humor.