Fred Opie covering Hobart's Marc Moore, Manhasset High School's Lacrosse Day of Champions 1984
Started talking about my experience as a cocky Junior College recruit showing up at Syracuse University (SU) in the fall of 1983. I was coming off summer surgery on both knees for tendinitis and trying to get back in playing shape. Once I got cleared to play my head remembered the post surgery pain and said, “nothing doing!” I quickly became a Division I coaches worst nightmare—a scholarship player with no game! I was out of shape and had bad habits from playing against lesser competition in junior college. In addition, talented walk on Chris Burt (Lawrenceville Prep) proved he was for real! The guy had great speed and stick skills and he kept getting better. It felt like my SU teammates and the coaches had serious doubts about my ability to perform and I felt like you do when you are going through a break up that you don’t want to happen. Over the years I’ve seen depression as a player, coach, and professor in folks more focused on their do than their who. It happens when you invest more in what you do then who you are. I’ve also observed that among highly recruited college athletes several things can follow, they overeat, transfer, quit the team, or adapt and thrive. In the fall of 1983 I battled with depression but many people at the time most likely did not know it. It's serious folks but I can tell you from experience that with professional help you can get through it.
For those, like my wife, who can’t stand typos, watch out! I have severe ADD which kept me from moving forward with this blog for too long. My friend encouraged me to start blogging and just disclose my disability the same way I do on the first day of class as a college professor. Folks I regularly make spelling mistakes because of my disability. In order to get two books and several academic journal articles published I use a professional copy editor. To blog that would take too much time and money. So if you can overlook my typos, enjoy my musings.
Stories about food traditions and how and why they change. Fred Opie has appeared on the History Channel's "101 Fast Foods That Have Changed the World." He is a Professor of History and Foodways at Babson College and the author of Hog and Hominy: Soul Food from Africa to America and the forthcoming book Black and Latino Coalitions in New York 1959 to 1989 (Columbia University Press.) In September 2013, he completed a book on the life and work of anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston through the lens of food.