yesterday, Kobe Bean Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, was killed on their way to her basketball game. along with them was another family: a college baseball coach John Altobelli, his wife Keri, and their daughter Alyssa. three others have yet to be named.
there are only a few notable first name people in my generation. we have Lebron, Kanye, Rihanna, Beyoncé and Kobe. Kobe is one of the few people we know by first name, last name not needed. every male in amerikkka of the age at least twenty-five through thirty five has been affected by Kobe. directly or indirectly, we all have been influenced.
his work ethic, his attention to detail, shooting something into the garbage from across the room and yelling “KOBE!”. Kobe is the model of hard work. Kobe is the model of not having excuses. Kobe would not be satisfied with becoming an author, he wouldn’t stop until he became best seller. he wouldn’t be satisfied with being an actor, he wouldn’t stop until he won awards. as hard as it is making it to the NBA as many young men don’t have the chance or ability to do, he wasn’t satisfied with being drafted. at age eighteen, he told Shaq he IS going to be the Will Smith of the basketball world. they all laughed at him, urging him to be humble and don’t overstay his welcome. stay in his young lane.
years later, he was the Will Smith of the basketball world.
Kobe didn’t just believe he was able to win a championship. he believed he could break metal with his mind. he believed he could turn lava into ice. he believed he could sell salt to a slug.
and he would do ever one of those acts. he did not believe in the idea of forfeiting. that was not in his blood. he has motivated myself and millions all over to the world to just go. and when you go, don’t be satisfied with getting there. go and be the absolute best of the best. don’t be satisfied with being good. be great. he told the world he was going to be the greatest at seventeen years old… and well.
Kobe broke his hand one year and now most people will take that as a sign to chill and don’t think about the art they’ve committed to.
and then there’s Kobe.
Kobe once was making a move against Harrison Barnes in hunt of the playoffs. he bent the corner and fell. ruptured Achilles. that didn’t stop him from walking back to the free-throw line on his own strength. no help. knocked down two free-throws and walked to the locker room.
this guy was committed to helping the homelessness problem in Los Angeles. he was a huge advocated for women’s basketball WNBA more than any other professional athlete.
i’m taking this time not to highlight his skill that most has overlooked due to their age or early signs of dementia, but to glance at the person Kobe.
he did not stop, regardless of what was in front of him. he would see the end and get to the end. outside factors happen all the time. we are not generally judged by what happens to us but how we respond to what happens to us.
Kobe didn’t have the largest hands, ask people who knew. he didn’t jump the highest, a whole foot less than MJ. he wasn’t the buffest like Lebron. he wasn’t the quickest like Iverson. didn’t have handles like Kyrie. so why is he so loved? why does he constantly come up in the all time conversations? is it not more notable that he had his physical limitations yet finished the race ahead of everybody instead of having the v12 engine and winning?
he just didn’t stop. he refused to settle and let life beat him.
when he was on the court, he didn’t have friends with opponents.
when he became an O.G., he mentored the young guys. he just simply loved the game when he was in it.
but when he was no longer playing, he was no longer playing.
he had friends. he enjoyed relationships.
Kobe enjoyed retirement the most. he embraced life after basketball more than anyone i have seen. he wasn’t the old head who couldn’t accept change in the game. he wasn’t the angry senile man who didn’t want to help the younger generation and lace them up with sound advice.
he prepared for life after basketball. and he tackled it perfectly. he loved being a father. he learned from his infidelity in the past and grew from it. he proved to his wife and kids that they meant the world to him. if you think he took basketball seriously, what do you think a man who once cheated on his wife and hated himself for it took even more seriously after?
Different Animal, Same Beast.
Kobe was a family man. he rebranded and reinvented himself better than most could aspire to. why? people often end up doing what they truly want to do.
he didn’t want to fail. he didn’t believe in failure in self.
“i’m reflective only in the sense that i learn to move forward, i reflect with a purpose.”
“people just don’t understand how obsessed i am with winning.”
he wanted to win as a father and husband as much as he did on the court.
and he did.
one thing that i would die for is respect.
Kobe forced people to respect him. he was himself, but you had no other choose but to.
we can always talk about past or we can talk about what the past was and how it made someone a better person. if we use our past to learn from and then make sure to never go back down that path, THAT is impressive. THAT writes a better book. THAT builds respect.
Kobe working that hard on the court and then to make sure his family was reconnected wasn’t a surprise.
the one thing that Kobe was not successful in was having a boy.
he had four daughters. but as many mistakes Kobe did make, God makes none. ever.
his daughter, Gianna, walked in his footsteps. she took basketball seriously. they had a really close relationship. she was a daddy’s little girl.
plus, he had a sense of humor. watch these commercials he had with Kanye and Serena Williams (and others).
there are a few people i admire outside of their art.
Kobe is one of them. there are things i don’t agree with as with any and every human walking this planet.
people in a glass house should not throw stones.
also, we have to mature ourselves enough to be able to accept the fact that yes, humans are humans. not one is perfect. not one has an immaculate life and history.
we can have disagreements without losing respect or hating someone.
understanding that presents a new element to our life. because when we look at our life, past or present, we can empathize with others.
empathy is something we all have to work on.
it is something some have and some don’t but after seeing the legacy of Kobe, who is ready to settle? who is ready for not being good at something that can ultimately make their life and loved ones happier and peaceful? we have to work on it.
a few good steps to take is to take a minute to respond. we don’t have to react as soon as something happens. we can breathe and think “how can i help this situation?” we often just speak because we think that’s the best thing. no. sometimes not speaking at all is enough. and when we do speak, we feel the need to say a whole lot. at the most vulnerable times, the person normally doesn’t need a long essay to help them.
most times, less is more.
most times “i love you” “i can only imagine how you feel right now” “i’m here” “you’re not alone” “you got me” “you WILL be okay” “you can use this moment to learn from his/her legacy and now make your own legacy” “you smiled a lot because of what he/her did. that’s what they lived for. don’t stop now” “carry that baton and finish their race that they started” “don’t worry about crying. there’s a time to cry. there’s a time to mourn. there’s a time for exactly how you feel. right now is that time” is enough.
i know this because some of these methods have been used on me and put me at ease and some i have used and have been effective.
we don’t have to have the answers. we just have to be there. that’s normally what most people need. that is not the time to “keep it real.” that is not the time to say something insensitive, no matter how true it is. what is the point in saying it? it won’t be well received and it won’t be remembered. it will only be problematic.
also, give people their flowers TODAY. stop waiting. i have wrote too many times about loving on people and letting them know precisely how important they are to you.
Kobe died at forty-one riding in a helicopter he has been in for years. Kobe died in the city he dedicated his life to for twenty years. no one could have guessed this. this was unthinkable.
we cannot wait any longer to give praise. use sports to get closer and build relationships. use music to get to know others. not to have beef and hate because someone is great at their job and your team/favorite rapper is on the other side.
use this time to text or call your friends and family. use this time to get better at life. use this time to go harder. use this time to not take life that seriously and just enjoy the process. just enjoy every day. smile. joke around. spend money. use your sick days. use days to pull up on your boyfriend. use days to go to moms house and cook or order dinner.
there’s only three things that’s for sure: taxes, death and trouble.
don’t wait for those things to happen to appreciate money, life, and happiness.
i tell my parents “i love you” after every conversation i have. i hug and kiss them every time i see them. i was once asked if saying “i love you” is just habitual and maybe i should stop saying it every time for it to mean something the next time.
but every time i say it, i do mean it. when i don’t say it, i text or call back to say it. not to remind them as they both know i do love them. but for them and for me to reaffirm it. for us both to know there is nothing at this point of the game that can separate us.
you know how people leave the house or party and say “stay safe”? that phrase alone won’t protect them. but it affirms that you want them to stay safe. it tells them that you love them. it tells them that you enjoy their life and hope they will return to do it again.
all of the little or big feuds you have with your family, kill that noise. don’t have to be buddy buddy but kill that noise. all of that beef you have with past friends, kill that noise.
it does not matter, yo. only life matters. only a happy life matters. if it’s eating at you, it’s not producing a happy life. if you’re losing sleep over it, it’s not producing a happy life.
love your life enough to protect it and to get rid of any type of bad energies and past trauma.
you are enough. your life matters. work on empathy. love on your family and friends. just show them that you care. don’t stop the race until it’s over. erase the idea of failure and excuses from your vocabulary.
“pain doesn’t tell you when you ought to stop. pain is the little voice in your head that tries to hold you back because it knows if you continue you will change.”
“my brain… it cannot process failure. it will not process failure. because if i sit there and have to face myself and tell myself, ‘you’re a failure’… i think that’s almost worse than death.”
“it’s the one thing you can control. you are responsible for how people remember you- or don’t. so don’t take it lightly.”
one of my favorite ones is “we can always kind of be average and do what’s normal. i’m not in this to do what’s normal.” Kobe Bean Bryant.
One thought on “Kobe!!!”
Loved the Great tribute! To Kobe. I love YOUR passion for people. You love HARD