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

    09/25/22 The Sunday Surlys

    Me? Oh, I’m OK, I guess. You know, except for getting my heart and guts ripped out…twice…on Saturday night. How’s it going for you? Rice could have beaten Houston. Should have. Incarnate Word could have beaten Southeast Louisiana. Should have. But it’s not like I’m the only one hurting, right, Longhorns? And I’m sure it’s a rough Sunday morning for Arkansas’ field goal kicker. That goes for Miami head coach Mario Cristobal, too. Looks like the Sooner Schooner broke an axle. There’s plenty of misery to go around. Oh, and that was a crappy way to lose, Missouri. But for

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    09/24/22 All this and Saturday picks, too!

    In a world full of John McEnroes, be a Roger Federer. A huge lifetime and career salute to the Ultimate Sportsman. If you’re going to reach a baseball milestone, you couldn’t do it wearing a more appreciated uniform than the Bat and Birds. I had the privilege of living and working in St. Louis. That’s the Ultimate Baseball Town. Cardinal fans are as knowledgeable as they are passionate. They will celebrate Albert Pujols’ ascendence into The 700 Club (sorry, too easy) as no other baseball evangelicals would. I’m an Astros fan. So I don’t have much to bitch about. But

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    09/23/22 The season is too short!

    Football seasons are so short. Do you realize tonight marks the midpoint of the Texas high school football regular season? Every week is so precious. But on the NFL side it looks like the Steelers’ season is going to be endless miles of bad road.  Pittsburgh gained 59 yards in the second half of Thursday’s loss to the Browns. And there will be no season at all for suspended Celtics coach Ime Udoka. What a quagmire that whole thing is… Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff says the added revenue UCLA will receive by joining the Big Ten will be more than

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    09/22/22 Bad behavior

    Mike Evans was completely out of line. And he very much earned and deserved his one-game NFL suspension. No, he should not have won his appeal, and, no, there was no NFL “conspiracy” involving league executive Jon Runyan, whose son plays for the Packers. Folks need to grow the hell up, starting with Evans. And that goes for Bruce Arians, too. Love me some Bruce. But he was an active instigator of that incident between Evans and Saints DB Marshon Lattimore. And what was Bruce doing on the sideline in the first place? Kyler Murray says he has “no hard

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    09/21/22 Midweek Musings

    Nine first-year eligible players have been nominated for the 2023 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I’m happy for anyone and everyone who gets in, but I will especially happy if (when) longtime Browns OT Joe Thomas gets fitted for a gold jacket. Traditional rivalries are the lifeblood of college football. For absolutely no valid or rational reasons, we’re going to lose the annual Bedlam game between Au Jus and Okie State just as “Sooner” as OU heads to the SEC. My reaction? I’ll just leave it at “sad.” Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff says he doesn’t expect any

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    09/20/22 Hurts, Don’t It?

    Jalen Hurts, si. Kirk Cousins, no. Attention, NFL. The Eagles are a problem. And the Vikings will underachieve. But you knew that. My respect for Hurts grows by the week. He was not anywhere close to a good passer when he came to the league. Usually, that means a guy will never be a good passer. But he has worked tirelessly on his delivery and footwork and is now more than competent throwing the football. He was already a marvelous runner and a universally respected leader. He now leads the NFL in both yards per attempt and rushing touchdowns. Yes,

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    09/19/22 Comeback Sunday!

    OK, we’re two weeks into the NFL season, so let’s do what we do. Let’s categorize, group, classify, rush to premature conclusions and engage in unsupported speculation. Really, really good Bills Chiefs Talented, but still figuring things out… Bucs Rams Chargers Broncos Intriguing Dolphins Vikings Eagles Giants 49ers Who are you? Cowboys Titans Living a lie Browns Cardinals Packers Freaking out Colts Bengals Steelers Kicking themselves Ravens Saints Raiders No “there” there Commanders Panthers Patriots Falcons Not good, but, damn they play hard! Jets Lions Bears Seahawks Texans Jags Harsh realities I feel genuinely horrible for Trey Lance. But the

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    09/18/22 Longhorns find the formula

    Too much Bijan. Texas shook off those early body blows from UTSA. What we saw last night can be the ‘Horns’ winning formula going forward. Run the rock. And this is a much more physical Texas defense than we have seen in recent years. The Aggies pretty much had to have that one. Now they’re looking at four straight road games, starting next Saturday against Arkansas in Arlington. I think we can all agree that Kansas is now a football school. The Jayhawks are 3-0 for the first time since 2009. And Houston’s hopes of making a New Years Six

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    09/17/22 Saturday night’s all right for fightin’!

    What a way for the Astros to clinch a postseason berth Friday night as Yordan Alvarez hit three homers and Justin Verlander struck out nine in his return from that calf strain in a 5-0 win over the A’s. Alvarez’s “hat trick” came on his first three at-bats. Look, I’m picking the Aggies tonight against Miami. But I really don’t know why. They have to still be a little punchy, and they’re starting a new quarterback in Max Johnson. A&M better take care of business tonight. Have you seen their upcoming schedule? Remember, Jimbo, in the words of the Beatles,

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    09/16/22 Amazon not ready for prime time

    The Chargers have to be kicking themselves. They were in complete control of that game in the first half, yet led only 17-14 at intermission. KC then ran off 13 unanswered points to take a 10-point lead. That 99-yard interception return by rookie Jaylen Watson that gave the Chiefs their first lead at 24-17? Herbert will get most of the public blame, but that was on the Chargers’ play-side receivers, who had bad spacing and made poor leverage adjustments vs. coverage. Herbert later got drilled in the ribcage and had postgame X-rays taken. We’ll know more today. Cooper Rush says

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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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