Laptop in hand. TV off. I was in the throws of a website redesign when my 17 years old texted me from work.
Not once did I consider Kobe, last name…Bryant! You see, we’ve been dealing with tragedy for weeks/months, so I was bracing myself to hear about another teenager gone too soon. Thankfully, it wasn’t.
But this somehow seems worse.
I woke up today, and the headlines are the same!
The basketball savant and one of the deadliest assassins, appropriately named “The Black Mamba,” is, in fact, gone! This guy who mesmerized us for two decades with his jab, sweep through, and ability to create separation to get off shot after shot. Fearless in competition, you knew he was gonna strike. The question was, when, how, and who was gonna stop him?
A Complex Man
Some will say, off the court, he was complicated! I often thought so myself and criticized him for what I felt was outright arrogance. After a little age and maturity, what I found is this, he was human! To be human is to be often misunderstood, sometimes wrong, but always complex. So like the rest of us, he was flawed. In some ways, perfectly!
His work ethic, his approach to the game of basketball, the mamba mentality; that’s the kind of perfection we all seek no matter the arena. Beyond the hardwood, he’d began to create a legacy different from his on-court persona.
Yet, more than any titles (MVP, Future Hall of Famer, Oscar winner) or accolades he achieved throughout his NBA career or post-career, dad seemed to be the one he was most proud of. So it’s all the more heartbreaking that he died on his way to a game with his 13-year old daughter, Gianna, by his side. Her life too cut short in the blink of an eye.
Much like the rest of the world, today I continue to mourn the passing of yet another iconic figure gone far too soon. More importantly, he reminded me to cherish the now.
So I encourage you to kiss your daughter, embrace your son, call your father, take your mother’s hand and tell them that they are loved. If there’s a relationship that’s broken, take a moment today, right now, to mend it! Because we’ve all been painfully reminded, tomorrow isn’t promised!
Rest peacefully Kobe “Bean” Bryant! You are and have always been, #TheColorofIngenuity