Sunday, December 03, 2006

The War At Home


This is an email I got in 2003 that is (sadly) still quite relevant. Well, relevant in that we're still at war in the Middle East, and it's still a mess there. Also relevant in that violence in Oakland is worse than it has been in the last few years- with the 140th homicide for the year happening this weekend. (Remember, there are only about 400,000 people living in Oakland. That's a lot of homicides! They mostly take place in a couple pockets of the city, one of which happens to be my school neighborhood.)

The email is not relevant in that the Raiders were once in the Super Bowl. They're not so close to that now.

Al Davis had put together the perfect team for the Oakland Raiders. The only thing that was missing was a good quarterback. He had scouted all the colleges, and even the high schools, but he couldn't find a ringer quarterback who could ensure a Super Bowl win.

Then one night, while watching CNN, he saw a war-zone scene in Afghanistan. In one corner of the background, he spotted a young Afghani soldier with a truly incredible arm. He threw a hand grenade straight into a 3rd-story window 200 yards away, ka-boom! He threw another hand grenade into a group of 10 soldiers 100 yards away, ka-blooey! Then a car passed, going 90 mph, bulls-eye, right through the car's open window!

"I've got to get this guy!" Al said to himself. "He has the perfect arm!"

So, he brings him to the States and teaches him the great game of football, and the Raiders go on to win the Super Bowl for another time in history. The young Afghani is hailed as the Great Hero of football, and when Coach asks him what he wants, all the young man wants to do is to call his mother.

"Mom," he says into the phone, "I just won the Super Bowl!" "I don't want to talk to you," the old woman says. "You deserted us. You are not my son."

"I don't think you understand, Mother!" the young man pleads. "I just won the greatest sporting event in the world. I'm here among thousands of adoring fans."

"No, let me tell you," his mother retorts. "At this very moment, there are gunshots all around us. The neighborhood is a pile of rubble. Your two brothers were beaten within an inch of their lives last week, and this week your sister was attacked in broad daylight."

The old lady pauses, and then tearfully says, "I'll never forgive you for making us move to Oakland!"

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