Daniel Begins


Ever been in a serious relationship?

He or she broached the topic of marriage.

He or she dressed up to meet the parents.

He or she knew exactly how many children one desired, adopt, and even took a few hours to create cute childish monikers.

Of course the story does not end on a happy note. What happens next is your arbitrarily misplaced [on the pedestal of human existence] significant other, labeled as the end-all be-all of your soul, steps down from the cushioned throne to “explore the world,” or “set my priorities straight.”

So where am I leading you readers? If I’ve lost you and your focus grew dim … then great! You are on the right track.

You have just been dumped by your loved one.

Love, though, sneaks into your room that night, points a gun to your head, screws on the silencer, and in a muffled voice says, “Fight while you still have a chance.”

My alter-ego dons on a Batman mask and ties a Superman cape around its neck. Super-Bat says that I didn’t play my cards right before, that I’ve been too immature.

Grow up, learn the game from the lowest depths of the ocean, to the highest molecule of the sky, digest the information.

So this, my friends, has become the love of my life. Talking about the game of football and analyzing teams: from individual personalities to their psyches, games: from why ‘the Eagles’ will win and how they can, and the sport: from historical figures to foreseeing futures. I’m addicted, but why, you hella wonder.

Welcome to the world of Daniel Park. Where his headache holds the power to outmatch any earthquake. He’s been properly trained, though, to handle the consequences. He’s served guests for approximately two and a half years, dealt with all types of people. From working at Glory Days Bar and Grill, Woo Lae Oak, a 4-star Korean restaurant, Fireside Grill, Silver Diner, the Lemaire at the 5-star Jefferson Hotel, and Seasons 52, a fine-dining wine bar in Tysons Corner.

Okay obviously he can’t keep a job if his life depended on it but he still built the heavy resume under his belt, right? Growing up a quiet little Asian boy that really didn’t have much to say, he thought to himself, how am I going to be able to communicate with Non-Asians later in the future? OH, that’s right. Forcing yourself to talk to different types of people will broaden your horizons and strengthen your vocal chords, oh and fortify your Asian-boy confidence. So that’s what he decided to do on the side. His confidence still wavers at times but that’s just because he lets his nerves get the best of him.

Why football? Why? Okay, not even my closest friends know this secret.

In 2005, December 4th to be exact, I was watching the FOX Sports Pregame show with JB, Terry, Howie and Cris. Now Terry Bradshaw, one of the all-time greats, was one of my favorite analysts to watch. He and I share the same birthday, so a bit of bias kicked in.  Mr. Bradshaw usually hit the points dead on, and I respected him for that. All changed until his lips spewed the one sentence that sticks to me like gum to this day.

From what I see here, the 5-6 Redskins will win 5 straight games and clinch a playoff spot. I paraphrase because I didn’t write it down.

My heart blew up into smitherines, excuse me? What the ____ did you just say? the 5-6 REDSKINS (five wins, six losses) are going to win FIVE STRAIGHT and make the PLAYOFFS?!?! DIE.

And just like that. 5 weeks passed by, the Redskins cruised into the playoffs, beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their 6th straight win and fell short against the Seahawks in the Divisional Championship.

Now that, ladies and gentlemen, is something called analysis. Mr. Bradshaw, if I could formally apologize for being such an idiot and not believing in you. I’m sorry for doubting your absurd decision to publicly announce the preposterous prediction. I just didn’t see what you were seeing, you know? Which makes me wonder, how did you conjure up the confidence to do that?

#1. He looked at a team with a losing record (5-6)
#2. Claimed that they’ll win 5 consecutive times (….)
#3. They did exactly that
#4. Won my heart over, gives me the excuse to say something crazy and be correct.

Thank you, Terry for your insight. Your efforts to detail proved and inspired me to copy. Emulation is the best form of flattery, right?

So with all that, I analyzed the game in secret.

I know, for a Korean-American, the adversity that awaits, especially for a guy who’s never played varsity-level football in his life. For good reason, of course.

An eye check-up turned his life around in the 10th grade. The doctor told him, and his parents, that his retina was gradually tearing and that if he were to get tackled incorrectly, he could lose his eyesight.  He quit tackle football sophomore year.

I want Terry Bradshaw’s prescription, his ability to visualize, his talent to balance the perfect amount of luck and research to determine the future of a team’s destiny.

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2 thoughts on “Daniel Begins

  1. Dan,

    I really like that you started with the reason for the blog and how you got to it, as well as a story. Stories are a great way to pull people in, and this whole post was engaging and interesting.

    A couple of points going forward–this was a little long. At times you seemed to wander off the point. Think about being more concise and on target with the posts. Each post should have on overarching idea. You jumped around a bit, and I wasn’t clear where the eye problem fir in the middle of why football analysis, so try to be sure to link things together. Also, while blog paragraphs should be short, yours were occasionally too short and that broke the flow of the piece a little.
    It was a really good read, and I look forward to reading more!

  2. Hey I really like the style of your writing, its engaging and fun to read. As a fellow Korean-American, I understand your descriptions of yourself, as I grew up in a similar way. Unfortunately, I am not a fan of the game of football. I respect it, but I just don’t watch games or participate in the many events that take place. It’s funny, my roommate Gabi is a hardcore eagles fan, maybe ya’ll would kick it off.

    Another thing I noted was in your “about” page, you posted a link to your song. That was pretty tight dude, haha, I play the guitar and sing, so I get the whole music thing. You’ve got sick flow. I wish I was better at Korean in order to understand what you were saying, but that was tight as shit. Keep on keeping on man, look forward to reading your posts.

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