Enlightened uncertainty

I don’t know.

That felt so good.

OK, yeah, you don’t know, either. And, yeah that felt pretty good, too.
Some things are certain, because they have been factually established. The acceleration of Earth’s gravity near the surface of our planet is 9.8 meters per second per second. I’m disinclined to argue with you about it. Smart folks have worked this out. So, yeah, I know that. And in this case, it would be disingenuous for me to say, “I don’t know.” I do. And denying a known fact is as unethical as advancing a known falsehood.

We don’t know everything. We never will. I find that exciting. It puts a little kick in every day ending in “y.”

We only know what we know when we know it. But we don’t have to know everything to know something. Knowledge is cumulative. There are things we don’t know yet, but inevitably will.

There are other things we don’t yet know but probably will.
And then there are things about which we should be humbly uncertain, because they are by definition uncertain.

Hubris is never on uglier display than when we assert certainty about a subject whose status is permanently uncertain. See, “Religious Wars” for $200.

Fair warning. “My god can whup your god” is not gonna go well for you here. Similarly, “There’s only one way to salvation, and it just so happens to be mine,” is not rational, and will command no intellectual respect. Please remember the name of our company.

Faith will be respected. Dogma, not so much.

Nothing is more enlightened than acknowledging our uncertainty. It is not only rational and ethical, it is “lightening.” It will lighten our load.

“I don’t know,” is not weakness. It’s strength.

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    The Games People Play—All Things Sports

    05/30/23 0-151

    There’s a reason why NBA teams trailing 0-3 have never come back to win a playoff series in now 151 attempts. It appears to be very difficult. Game One of The Finals between the Heat and the Nuggets Thursday sets up as the old “rest vs. rust” question. Let me jump ahead to the, say, six “page” story that lies ahead. The Nuggets will win their first NBA title. You could take everything I know about hockey and inscribe it on the head of a pin with room enough left over for the Gutenberg Bible. But this should be a

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    05/29/23 NOT SO FAST, BEAN BREATH!

    This is supposed to be one of those stories that writes itself, right?  The Celts get down 0-3 and start walking The Green Mile. They get a “dignity win” in Game Four to avoid summary execution, but there’s no reason to think it’s anything but a brief stay. Still, sports pundits being sports pundits—particularly Northeast sports pundits being Northeast sports pundits—start braying that Boston will become the first NBA team to climb out of that canyon to win a playoff series. That was not as bold a prediction as it may have sounded. That’s one of those deals that if

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    05/28/23 Start your engines!

    Well, the C’s will get their shot. The Celtics will try to become the first NBA team ever to win a playoff series after trailing 0-3 when they host Miami in Game 7 Monday night. The Heat came within a tenth of a second of closing the deal at home Saturday, but a putback by Boston’s Derrick White gave the Celts a 104-103 win and a chance to make history. Highly respected veteran Toronto Raptors assistant Adrian Griffin has landed the head coaching job with the Milwaukee Bucks.  And, yes, Griffin had to get a stamp of approval from Giannis.

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    05/27/23 It’s a seller’s market for D-Hop.

    The question now is not, “Who wants DeAndre Hopkins.? The question is, “What team does D-Hop want?” Well, he gave us his specs last week, well before he was released by the Cardinals on Friday. DH says he wants a team with a veteran, mature, successful quarterback (take THAT, Kyler Murray!) and a big-time defense. Kansas City? I’ve heard Buffalo mentioned as well, but I would not currently describe the Bills’ defense as big-time. Looks to me like KC should be Hopkins’ “chief” consideration. Baltimore? I can’t see that happening. I’ll just say it. Lamar Jackson is not a polished-enough

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    05/26/23 But at least the Pats cheated nobly, this time…

    Look, IF the Celtics win Game Six, THEN you national sports pundits can start talking about Boston possibly becoming the first team in NBA history to overcome an 0-3 deficit to win a series. For now, please keep that stuff in your holster. The NFL has caught the Patriots cheating—again. But this time the league says the Pats owned their mistake in a “noteworthy and commendable” way. The Hoodie fell on his sword and fully cooperated when the league busted him for exceeding offseason player meeting time limits. Belichick will scratch a check for $50G and the Pats will lose

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    05/25/23 It’s gonna take a lot of Love in Green Bay.

    My vote for Most Mysterious Man in America goes to Jordan Love. Now entering his fourth NFL season, he remains an unknown quantity. In three years, Love has thrown three TD passes and three interceptions. No one really knows if Love can play. But we’re about to find out as he assumes the starting QB role in Green Bay. That can be a rough gig. Love’s every throw during OTAs has been under the media microscope, and his practice “stats” to date have been less than glowing. My view? Give the man a chance. But it is true that the

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    05/24/23 Cancun on Three!

    OK, Celtics. You won one. Now you can get your minds back on what really matters. Cancun. No, I don’t think this is the end of NFL football as we know it. I’m talking about the new rule adopted Tuesday that encourages fair catches of kickoffs outside of the end zone. The rule (for now approved only for the 2023 season) states that fair-caught kickoffs will be placed at the 25-yard-line, regardless of where it is fielded. The idea is to cut down on train-wreck collisions and reduce injuries. Keep in mind that we already have this rule in college

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    05/23/23 I’M AGGIN’ IT!

    Nobody likes a show-off, narcissistic flexer. That was a muscle-head decision by the NFL Monday. Thursday Night flex scheduling is insanity, one that reflects zero regard for players, teams and fans. I’M AGGIN’ IT! As much as I dislike it, Thursday flex scheduling will not threaten the NFL’s foundation. But gambling on games by players and coaches just might. The more I read, the more concerned I get. I’ll keep an eye on this for you. You bet I will. It’s not like the NFL didn’t do anything right on the first day of the league’s Spring Meeting. The owners

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    05/22/23 Often, it’s how we handle the GOOD times.

    All that remains of the two NBA conference championship series is a pair of mercy killings. While it’s not the fault of the Heat or the Nuggets, and should not be held against them, these are nevertheless the two least compelling league semifinal series I can recall. The only remaining intrigue is whether the collapses in L.A. and Boston will result in additional NBA coaching whackings. Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla says, “It’s on me.” Careful, man. Somebody may take you up on that. Brooks Koepka became my favorite golfer pretty much the instant he blossomed on the scene. While he

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    No NBA team has ever come back from an 0-3 deficit to win a best-of-seven playoff series. The Lakers won’t, either. Denver has “the look.” The Nuggets will win their first NBA Championship. They’ll finish off the Lakers quickly and then overpower either the Heat or the Celtics. Brooks Koepka was my favorite golfer until he hooked up with the Murderous Saudis. So, yeah, I’m conflicted heading into the final round of the PGA. I just hope it doesn’t rain all damn day again. The world is a better place when the Longhorns are good at baseball. These Longhorns are

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    It Was My Privilege

    I’m fortunate that over the course of my life and career I have encountered many unforgettable newsmakers. This series is not about self-aggrandizement or name-dropping. It’s just me expressing deep gratitude.

    Paul’s Memorable Encounter: Keith Hernandez

    My first full day of work at KMOX (now KMOV) TV in St. Louis was June 7, 1980. I was a 25-year-old, just-hired sportscaster whose previous tv jobs had been in Tucson and Austin. Movin’ on up to the East Side! I was incredibly fortunate and grateful. KMOX was CBS owned-and-operated. I reported to the newsroom at 8:30 a.m. and was immediately told to high-tail it to the airport along with photographer Bob Bauer. The Cardinals had just fired manager Ken Boyer, a former Card All-Star third-baseman and St. Louis hometown fan favorite. The early-morning whacking had occurred in Atlanta,

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    Paul’s Memorable Encounter: Joe Namath

    This would have been the summer of 1981. I was working as a nightly sportscaster at KMOX (now KMOV) TV in St. Louis. My sportscasting partner was a very gracious gentleman named Tim Van Galder. TVG had been a record-setting quarterback at Iowa State (The ‘Clones) and later spent time with the NFL’s St. Louis Cardinals, primarily as Jim Hart’s backup. But it must be noted that in one of his NFL starts, he led the Cards to a win over the Colts and Johnny Unitas. Yes. That Johnny Unitas. Timmy also had a cup of coffee with the Jets.

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    Paul’s Memorable Encounter: Howie Long

    January, 1984. I was working for CBS, based out of St. Louis.  I was sent to Tampa to cover Super Bowl XVIII between the Washington Redskins (yes, at the time) and the Los Angeles Raiders at The Big Sombrero. Washington was the defending SB champ and was heavily favored. The Raiders flew into Tampa on Monday. They arrived at their team hotel about a half hour before I was supposed to interview Raiders Coach Tom Flores in the hotel lobby. We had set up the interview through the Raiders’ p.r. staff.  Everything is cool. Until…two minutes before airtime and Coach

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    Paul’s Memorable Encounter: Walter Payton

    Fact.  I used to have a shoe contract.  Yeah, that still sounds every bit as absurd to me as it does to you. But, yeah. Mid-80s. I was living and working in St. Louis as a television and radio sportscaster. I was approached by a representative of a newly-launched athletic shoe company named “Kangaroos.”  They were sharp enough kicks, especially for the era. White, with red ‘Roos on both sides of the heels. Enter Big Money. Rep tells me Kangaroos will pay me fifteen dollars a week to wear their shoes. I asked my tv station management if they were

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    Paul’s Memorable Encounter: Deacon Jones

    This would have been the mid-1980s. My agent got me a gig doing two weeks of promotional work for Miller Lite. The star of the promotion was retired NFL Hall-of-Famer Deacon Jones.  The co-star was another unforgettable retired NFL defensive lineman, Ben Davidson. So on the first Monday morning of the gig, I walked into the coffee-break room of the production studio, where I was told I was to meet Deacon and Ben, aka Mr. Jones and Mr. Davidson.  I entered the break room and tried to stay as inconspicuous as possible. But suddenly, The Voice of Thor rang out. 

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    It was the Spring of 1980. I was living and working in Tucson as sports director at the CBS affiliate, KOLD-TV. I learned that one of history’s greatest athletes was being treated for a terminal illness at the University of Arizona Medical Center.Jesse Owens. The news staggered me. I’ve always been a track buff and an amateur Olympic historian. There was no American athlete for whom I had more respect and even reverence. When I was a very young child, my former sprint champion father taught me to revere his name and legacy.Jesse Owens. That Jesse Owens. The American hero

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