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Grippi: Many thanks to pass around

Sun., Dec. 1, 2013

Thursday: Are there many better days than Thanksgiving?

Even the sports fan has a lot to be thankful for today, from college basketball to pro football to, well, OK, time with your family. I know there might be some readers of this who can’t spend the day at home and for that I commiserate. I’ve been away for Thanksgiving before and I know how tough it is (especially the bird in a bad New Jersey hotel restaurant). But today is the day to give thanks, not complain, no matter where you are.

With so much to be thankful for, I’m going to limit today’s post to sports, otherwise you would have to read a litany of the people who are special in my life.

As it is, my list is pretty long, though in no particular order. …

I’m thankful for being able to meet with you here each day, to share what’s going on in the local sports world and to share our thoughts on them. I rarely comment on what you have to say – I’ve had my turn and believe the comment section is yours to control as much as possible – but I’m really thankful to see the community of commentators growing. That means more people are comfortable sharing their thoughts.

I treasure every one of you, even those of you who don’t agree with me often. If there are some things in local sports around here you feel thankful about, feel free to share.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to have spent more than half a decade covering Washington State athletics. Though I had to be away from my family for much of the time, it was a great experience. I met many fine people who have stayed in touch even after my retirement and I got much better at my craft. Yes, I know. There is still a long way to go.

I’m thankful for the fine college basketball coaches in this area who have opened their practices to me. Men like Jim Hayford, Kelly Graves and Ken Bone have helped me learn and improve my abilities to teach the game to kids in our area. Their generosity is extraordinary and appreciated.

I’m thankful there are so many people around Spokane who have made it their life mission to help others in a variety of ways. Over the years I’ve crossed paths with some of the best, from Joe Everson, who not only served as a school counselor for a hundred years but also coaches baseball in his retirement, emphasizing life lessons, to Jim Psomas, whose selfless support of summer basketball has allowed many kids to realize their dreams. I’m thankful I can call these two, and many, many others who volunteer their time and effort for great causes, my friends.

I’m thankful for, shoot, I’m thankful for so many things, it would take up the entire day to write them all.

I know I forgot a lot of people I wanted to thank, but that’s the problem with getting old. You forget things. The good thing is you can blame being old and people can’t be ticked – at least publicly. If they are, it’s age discrimination.


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