January 30, 2007

Love in the Wild West

In a turn of events that has forced The OCC to go into a fit of rage and fire the entire research staff due to extreme negligence, we recently came into possession of an article (now approximately a year old) that much of the sports world may have already seen, but regardless needs to be examined and dissected at once, for gems like this don’t come along every day (and sometimes, as it just so happens, they come along a year late).

The subject of this piece is Boston Celtic Delonte West, who was already one of this site’s favorite players but ascended to a new level when we found out that he sat down to share some rather interesting thoughts with ESPN’s Page 2 on the topic of love.

While the result was not quite hilarity on par with Gilbert Arenas in Esquire, what Delonte had to say was still somewhere in the vicinity of transcendent.

Consider some of the more choice excerpts from Monsieur West’s discourse on love:

1) While describing what he thinks would be a “special night,” Delonte says:

“So, I pick her up in my white convertible. From there, I'd have the music pumping on the radio. The Jim Jones pumping, you know, 'Summer in Miami' song pumping. Got to keep a little gangsta, you can't be too soft. You can't be in there playing some guy that's crying, talking about don't leave me and love me baby, wah wah and all that.”

We must admit, we weren’t familiar with this Jim Jones, nor did we know of any song he wrote about Miami (though we were familiar with one Mike Jones and a song he wrote about flossing). In any case, we were able to look into the matter (which was difficult given the recent firing of the research staff), and learned that the song is actually entitled “Summer With Miami,” not “Summer in Miami.” We also made the determination that the song was not, based on a 30-second sample, download-worthy.

Since we otherwise don’t feel inclined to argue with Delonte’s assertion that you “Got to keep a little gangsta, you can’t be too soft,” we’ll move on.

2) Continuing on the same topic, Delonte says:

“So Jim Jones pumping and then from there, wind blowing through the hair, boom, we get straight to the point -- we eat afterwards because I don't want to kiss no onions. I don't want to kiss you tasting like onions and steak and mushrooms and everything.”

Now, you would think it would be safe to assume that “Boom, we get straight to the point” means that, well…he believes in getting straight to the point.

However, describing a later portion of the date, he comments:

“Do some skinny dipping, but keeping it clean fun, don't need to get all right to the point, you know, keeping it clean. Boom, get back, take her back home. Give her a kiss, tell her I enjoyed my night, let's do it again.”

So let’s get this straight: He “gets straight to the point” in the car, but while skinny dipping, he espouses the philosophy that you “don’t need to get all right to the point.”

So which one is it? This, frankly, was rather confusing, yet strangely enjoyable in its confusing-ness (which you might notice is something of a recurring theme throughout).

Two other notes here:

-It’s interesting that Delonte has chosen to emulate the Emeril Lagasse “boom” approach to setting up dramatic moments;

-You know this thing is filled with too much good material when we’re able to ignore the quote “I don’t want to kiss you tasting like onions and steak and mushrooms and everything.”

3) What also must be noted in here is the star turn taken by West’s then-Celtics teammate Orien Greene, who apparently was nearby when Delonte was talking and chimes in during Delonte’s hypothetical date scenarios with such gems as “What, you taking her back to the Mot 6?” (meaning Motel 6) and the truly sublime suggestion: “Take her to your yacht, dog.”

4) Describing said visit to yacht with his date, Delonte says:

“Pop some bottles, some Moet Rose. The red Moet, we ain't popping no Kristal, it tastes like urination. We ain't popping no Kris, that's $500 a bottle. It ain't that serious. It ain't going to get you drunk. Make sure you put that in there. We ain't doing a $500 bottle, we're doing a $99 wine and dine. While we're eating, have a singer. Who should I have?”

to which Greene, who gets more likable every time he speaks in this damn thing, responds without missing a beat, “R. Kelly.”

Well played, Orien.

Though this passage pretty much speaks for itself, it must be highlighted that the line “We ain’t popping no Kristal, it tastes like urination” is pure poetry.

5) Picking up after the meal on the boat, the next event in Delonte’s vision unfolds as follows (and you’ll recognize the skinny dipping thing from before because we’re jumping around):

“OK, so from there, we're doing a midnight skinny-dipping jump. Alright? From there, hopefully she's got money because I hope Jaws gets her, boom, make sure she got me in the will, bank, I'm good. Oh well, shark got her! Jaws got her. Nah, we ain't going there.”

This is great for so many reasons: For one, there’s the pure ridiculousness of coming up with the idea of a shark eating his date during skinny dipping so that he can get her money (even though he’s the one that’s a highly-paid professional basketball player).

Then, there’s the recurring (yet again) use of “boom.” Almost as if he can’t stop.

And just the tone of this whole thing is so oddly yet enjoyably frenetic that you can just picture Delonte talking faster than he can even think, so you get all of these extra words (and repetition, such as “shark got her! Jaws got her”) that make it exhausting and filled with energy at the same time.

And after all that effort to set it up, he suddenly attempts to nix the whole thing by saying, “Nah, we ain’t going there,” as if he hadn’t just gone there at all and in reality we all imagined it.

Which more or less sums up the entire Delonte experience. What’s real? What’s a joke? Is any of this sincere? And what the hell is he talking about, anyway?

The answer?

Only Delonte knows.


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