What Do I Think of Success? It Sucks

Jose Vilson Jose

Plaxico Burress

Plaxico Burress

The bad news is that Plaxico Burress, wide reciever for the New York Giants, shot himself in the leg, and thoroughly embarassed himself, Antonio Pierce, and anyone else who accompanied him at Latin Quarters. The worse news is that this happened just about a year after Sean Taylor, free safety who last played for the Washington Redskins, was murdered in his own home, and also 2 years after Darrent Williams, former cornerback for the Denver Broncos, was shot in a drive-by shooting in front of a holiday party. Yet, anyone like me has to be wondering whether these 2 earlier deaths made it possible for Plaxico to get into this situation to begin with.

If I’m in the mind of Plaxico Burress, I actually might consider having a gun for protection. Then again, and in all sincerity, I can’t understanding having the issues he has. I haven’t walked an inch in his cleats. For athletes making millions of dollars, they’re certainly not in the danger that, say, their owners or general managers are. They’re constantly expected to be in the public eye, and some of them do it gracefully, but other athletes, especially with the dynamic personalities of the “star athletes,” always see themselves as a little closer to the heavens and put themselves in much riskier behaviors because of what’s been given to them.

Right about now, yes, you should be thinking that I’m being a little too nice to Plax, as I am a self-professed Giants fan. But whenever I need a real-life version of the men who were once boys, I turn directly to my students, the little thugs who profess their cogency by throwing up pseudo-gang signs, bobbing their nappy heads to some non-sensical rap song, and hogging the ball, some of it is selfishness, but it’s more that they really need attention and love. They’re hyper-sensitive to a fault and don’t have any other way to express that. And frankly, even the ones with a “reputation” are usually idiot savants, not malicious malcontents.

And that was all but evident when Plaxico Burress, the wide receiver who left Pittsburgh so ungraciously, caught the game winning touchdown at the Super Bowl and only a few minutes later cried his eyes out aon the field, hardly able to get a word out before he burst into another round of tears. Tears that worked better than a “I told you so.”

That makes me wonder if people take the time to look behind the story.

Yes, it was dumb. Beyond belief.

Yes, he could have just gotten a bodyguard.

Yes, he didn’t even have to go as he was already injured.

But now New York, and America for that matter, is inundated with another big story about a Black man and a gun, and a mayor calling for his head, etc. This is more than a Cheddar Bob joke or a “Giant Idiot.” This is a man in need of some serious help. Hope the time off he gets will do him some good.

Jose, who had to play Devil’s Advocate for a bit …