Monday Musings for 4.5.21

 

Dear Friends,

I’ve been thinking a lot about Ken Winther.  Ken passed away on March 4 of last year.  We miss him a lot.  I miss my Sunday morning conversations with him.  We talked about a lot of things, especially Gonzaga basketball.  I don’t think there was a bigger fan than Ken.

I would have loved to talk to him yesterday about Saturday’s game that some are calling the greatest college basketball game ever played. Gonzaga beat UCLA in overtime on a buzzer-beating 40-foot shot.  Tonight they play Baylor for the national championship.

I listened to the pre-game show on the radio.  Bill Walton and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar gave their commentary.  Both played for UCLA, but they agreed that Gonzaga would probably win the game. They compared Gonzaga’s coach, Mark Few (a Tim Swanson look-alike) with their college coach, the legendary John Wooden.

I remember well the epic battle between Walton and Abdul-Jabbar in 1977 when the Portland Trailblazers beat the Los Angeles Lakers in four straight games on their way to their one and only NBA championship.  Walton was the better of the two in that series, much to my delight!

But I want this to be about more than basketball. Kareem was asked about the T-shirts he is selling. It’s an interesting collaboration with the estate of martial artist Bruce Lee, who died in 1973.  Bruce and Kareem were friends at UCLA.  One was 5’8″, the other was 7’2″.  One was Asian, the other was African-American.  They didn’t look like each other.  But they became very good friends.  You can even find a YouTube video of them together in one of Bruce Lee’s movies.  It is an interesting fight.

The T-shirts say: Make a friend with someone who doesn’t look like you . . . you might change the world.

That is one profound thought.

Today, as a basketball game is played in Indianapolis, a trial is starting its second week in Milwaukee.  The death of George Floyd continues to stir the conscience of our nation.  We don’t all agree.  It may be that racial tensions are worse, not better as a result of the “dismantle racism” efforts of the past year.  But can we agree on this?

Make a friend with someone who doesn’t look like you . . . you might change the world.

In Christ,

John