We’ve got a long way to go, baby | TheUnion.com
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We’ve got a long way to go, baby

That does it, my dear daughter.

Now’s the time.

As soon as you spoon through that bowl of Lucky Charms this morning, don’t even think about sitting down on that sofa.



The remote? Are you serious?

You are at the most critical juncture of your athletic career. If you don’t make that commitment now, your window of opportunity will slam shut faster than you can say “Magically delicious.”




For crying out loud, weren’t you paying attention yesterday afternoon, when I told you about Brittany Lincicome, that 18 year old who fired a U.S. Women’s Open record round of 66 Thursday?

And what about Wie?

No, not us.

Wie!

Were you actually listening as you smiled and nodded, when I told you about Michelle Wie, who is already teeing off in LPGA – not to mention PGA – tournaments even though her 15th birthday isn’t until October?

What does that have to do with you?

Time’s a wasting, baby. Just look at Tiger Woods.

Sure, Tiger played in his first PGA event at 16, but he didn’t turn pro until he was 20. And, yes, by the time he was 26, he had become the youngest golfer to win seven PGA majors. But, considering he hasn’t won a major since the 2002 Masters, maybe he’s already passed his prime.

What do you mean you “don’t know how to play golf?”

You’re missing the point here.

Listen, my little meal ticket. It doesn’t matter what you play, only that you get to work – er, start playing – now.

Tennis? Yes, I know you like to play tennis, but you’d better get serious if you do, in fact, want to be like that 17-year-old Russian – her name is Maria Sharapova, by the way – you saw playing on ESPN the other day.

Yeah, 17 is young. But do you realize that even if she were to win Wimbledon, she wouldn’t be anywhere near the youngest to ever win a Grand Slam title? Jennifer Capriati owns that claim to fame.

She was all of 14 years old when she won the 1990 French Open.

Do you think she spent her summer mornings channel surfing?

All I’m saying is you’ve got to decide.

Golf? Tennis? Softball? Swimming? Gymnastics?

Hmmm. You might be right. It may be too late to start a gymnastics career, or figure skating for that matter.

Look here, my little retirement fund, there’s never been such a premium placed on potential in the sports world. Just look at the NBA Draft a couple weeks ago. Eight of the first 19 players selected were less than a month removed from asking their pops if they can borrow the car to go to their senior proms.

And now they’re signing million-dollar endorsement deals before they’ve even taken the floor. Now, their pops are probably begging to borrow their rides.

Take a long, hard look at that dusty, old, hail-damaged Ford Escort, honey.

Don’t you want me to be riding in style?

Of course you do.

So let’s get to work. We’ll start with a five-mile run to get warmed up, maybe toss in a few wind sprints, followed by some push-ups, chin-ups and sit-ups.

Then, we’ll start working on the game of your choice.

Old Maid? Connect Four?

Yes, I know they’re your favorites. But for the last time, my little Sugar Baby, we’ve got to get serious about your sports career, because you’re not going to be 5 forever!

What?

(Sigh).

OK, we’ll get started in a little bit – but as soon as “Tom and Jerry” is over, we’re off to make all my – er, your – dreams come true.

ooo

Brian Hamilton is sports editor at The Union. He may be reached via e-mail at brianh@theunion.com or by phone at 477-4240.


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