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Editor at Large

Truth be told: Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley: Just because you say something doesn't make it controversial, and it doesn't make you a bad person.
Charles Barkley: Just because you say something doesn't make it controversial, and it doesn't make you a bad person. - (Photo / )

Charles Barkley famously once said, “I am not a role model.”

Which is a good thing, considering the Chuckster’s gambling and drinking issues.

But it says here that Barkley’s heart is in the right place, that he cares about the downtrodden. That he is observant and savvy. And that often there is truth in what Barkley – one of the most quotable people of the last quarter-century – says.

For example: Poor people should not rely on the government. Instead, they should get their education so that they control their destiny.

Or: We’re not all supposed to think alike.

Or: These are my new shoes. ... They won't make you rich like me. They won't make you rebound like me. They won't make you handsome like me. They'll only make you have shoes like me. That's it.

But perhaps the best observation from Barkley is this one, which he has said many times: There are only five real jobs in the world – teacher, fireman, policeman, doctor and those in the armed services.

That’s a pretty good list, although I’d expand “doctor” to include all of those in health care, and tweak two others to say firefighter and police officer.

If there’s a second five, one must consider farmer, fisherman, manufacturer, inventor and a competent IT person – with extreme emphasis on the word competent.

So, here’s to Charles Barkley. Still entertaining and still relevant nearly two decades after he retired as a player.

And still very perceptive. Just don’t necessarily go out drinking or gambling with him.


-- Quite possibly the very worst thing about work is listening to and clearing voice messages on your phone.

-- Arrogance: Pro football player DeAngelo Williams last week ripped into TV interviewers because they never played in the NFL, in effect saying there were unqualified to ask questions of him. Using that as a yardstick, there are only five people in the entire world who can ask questions of President Trump.

-- Unsolicited tip of the day for PR and media relations folks: When emailing photos, just send them as an attachment. Don’t use Dropbox. Don’t use We Transfer. Don’t use Google Drive. Don’t force the media to jump through hoops, such as creating an account, establishing a password and logging in, just to retrieve a photo. Isn’t the idea to make the photo as accessible as possible for use? Please don’t put up roadblocks.

-- Like we used to say when working at a daily newspaper: Will the last person left at ESPN please turn out the lights on the way out.

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