George

espnI only knew him as George.  He was a friend of a friend of a friend who sat next to me during dinner on our Woo-Hoo Weekend.  Naturally, I struck up conversation.  “So, George, what do you do?” 

“I’m a reporter,” he said.  That made sense seeing as how he was friends with another sports reporter who also joined us.  “I travel 90% of the time for my job, but I live here in Chicago.  I just got back from DC.” 

“OH, were you covering a sport down there?” I asked.

He chuckled, “No, I was judging the Miss DC pageant.”

A lightbulb went on.  Not just anyone judges Miss DC pageants.  This guy was famous, and I didn’t know it.

“George, please forgive me, but what’s your last name?”

“I’m George Smith.  I’m a reporter for ESPN.”

We proceeded to have a delightful conversation about sports (and my very limited knowledge of them). He has interviewed athletes from Tiger Woods to Peyton Manning and has covered everything from the Olympics to the Duke Lacrosse scandal.  The one event he refuses to cover is the Superbowl.  “I want to watch it on my couch and go to the bathroom and to the fridge when I want to,” he said, laughing.

“So, do you know any young, single, Christian professional athletes?” I joked.  George inched closer and pointed his finger in my face.  “Don’t you ever date a professional athlete,” he said sternly. 

I was shocked at the evident change in his persona.  “You don’t know what they go through,” he said.  “The only one I would put money on that’s not cheating on his wife is Tony Dungy.  Don’t you ever date a professional athlete,” he repeated.

We quickly resumed our more lighthearted conversation.  I asked what team he cheers for. “Usually whatever city I’m in or the underdogs. I always like to see them win,” he said. 

But I think he summed it up best when he said, “At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter who wins.” 

…a poignant saying coming from a sports reporter.

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~ by Serena on October 23, 2009.

2 Responses to “George”

  1. Correction:

    “At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter who wins – as long as it is the Colts.”

  2. Wow… what a conversation, Serena! I love the high esteem he has for Tony Dungy, but I’m saddened by his opinion of other professional athletes… and the life that they lead.

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