These five little words may seem like no big deal to me or you, but for one little boy with autism, they changed his world.
When 6-year-old Landon Johnson went to sit on Santa’s lap at the RiverTown Crossings Mall, it started out pretty typical as he relayed all the gifts he would like that year: a Wii, a remote control car, and a toy dinosaur.
But what Landon’s mom did NOT expect is that he would rush back to Santa’s lap to confess something that he thought was really really bad about himself. He wanted to let Santa know he had autism. Even more heartbreaking is the question he posed after the confession.
“Will my autism put me on the naughty list?” Landon asked. To his mom’s amazement, Santa just started rubbing her son’s hands to calm him down, as he told him, “It’s okay to be you.”
“You know I love you and the reindeer love you and it’s OK. You’re a good boy,” Santa told WOOD-TV. “You’re a good boy, you know.”
“This stranger in a red suit told my son the same message I’ve been trying to get through to him for a while now—that he’s special and I love him just the way he was made,” Landon’s mom told Today.com. “Seeing Landon’s face light up in that moment was just incredible. I couldn’t stop crying.”
His mom shared this heartwarming picture and post on Facebook that has since been shared by thousands of others touched by their story:
“I had an AMAZING experience w the Santa at the RiverTown Crossings Mall and I want to share my story with you:
My child is amazing! He has his quirks and drives me bonkers, but he is amazing! The other day he went to see Santa w the cousins. He said his peace to the old man in red and walked away. While aunt Brittany waited for pictures to print, he went back to Santa bc he wanted to tell him that he has Autism. He was flapping his hands, all excited to let Santa know that he has autism.
Santa sat him next to him and took L’s hands in his and started rubbing them, calming them down. Santa asked L if it bothered him, having Autism? L said yes, sometimes. Then Santa told him it shouldn’t. It shouldn’t bother him to be who he is. L told Santa that sometimes he gets in trouble at school and it’s hard for people to understand that he has autism, and that he’s not a naughty boy. Santa told L to not worry and that he has been a very good boy being who he is. They sat, and chatted for at least 5 mins. Santa payed close attention and listened to him. This just melts this momma’s heart! My child is a great advocate for himself. But this day was different. He opened up to this person about who he was and he was accepted. He wasn’t a science experiment, like he gets treated when most people find out he autistic. He was Landon, sitting with Santa and being told that it was ok to be himself. Mommy tells him all the time that he’s special and I love him the way he was made, but it’s always nice to hear it from others. To be told that it’s ok to be who he is.
We have met a lot of amazing people in our Autism journey, but this one made the top of the list. Shout out to the Santa at the RiverTown Crossings Mall. You.are.AMAZING!”
Share Landon’s incredible story of Santa’s unconditional love to keep the Christmas cheer alive and raise awareness for special boys just like him!
If you’d like to learn more about how you can support the autistic community, visit Autism Speaks today.
Elon Musk said last week that Tesla Inc. is designing a new sports car that could go from zero to 60 mph in 1.9 seconds. Not bad, but here’s a speed number that investors might want to focus on instead:
Over the past 12 months, the electric-car maker has been burning money at a clip of about $8,000 a minute (or $480,000 an hour), Bloomberg data show. At this pace, the company is on track to exhaust its current cash pile on Monday, Aug. 6. (At 2:17 a.m. New York time, if you really want to be precise.)
To be fair, few Tesla watchers expect the cash burn to continue at quite such a breakneck pace, and the company itself says it’s ramping up output of its all-important Model 3, which will bring money in the door. Investors don’t seem concerned. Tesla shares rose almost 3 percent to $317.81 Tuesday, giving it a market capitalization of $53 billion. Ford Motor Co. is worth $48 billion.
But still, its need for fresh cash came into high relief last week when Musk unveiled his latest plan to raise funds. He’s asking customers to pay him upfront to order vehicles that may not be delivered for years.
The Founders Series Roadster will cost buyers a $250,000 down payment even though it’s not coming for more than two years. Orders of those cars are capped at 1,000, meaning they alone could generate $250 million. Tesla is charging a total of $50,000 for reservations of the regular Roadster. Companies can also pre-order electric Semi trucks for $5,000, though they don’t go into production until 2019.
But all this is a pittance compared with Tesla’s financial needs. It’s blowing through more than $1 billion a quarter thanks to massive investment in making the Model 3, a $35,000 car that’s looking less likely to generate a return anytime soon.
“Whether they can last another 10 months or a year, he needs money, and quickly,” said Kevin Tynan, senior analyst with Bloomberg Intelligence, who estimates Tesla will be required to raise at least $2 billion in fresh capital by mid-2018.
Tesla has said it has ample money to meet its target of producing 5,000 Model 3 sedans by the end of March. After that date, the company expects to “generate significant cash flows from operating activities,” Tesla said in a Nov. 1 letter to shareholders. Tesla’s capital expenditures should also decline as the company pays off its expenses related to the Model 3, CFO Deepak Ahuja said on a conference call the same day.
Dave Arnold, a spokesman for Palo Alto-based Tesla, declined to elaborate.
Tesla’s options are limited.
It’s already drawing down on more of its revolving credit facilities than ever before. And while the bond market is a possible route, it may not be especially welcoming right now. Investors who bought $1.8 billion of debt three months ago remain under water even after the notes recovered a bit from a low of 93.88 cents on the dollar early this month.
That may leave selling equity as the most viable option. But that, of course, would dilute existing shareholders, and Musk, at 20 percent, is the biggest.
For more on Tesla, check out the podcast:
“So long as the company is burning cash, it will remain dependent on the patience and enthusiasm of public markets or the deep pockets of a white knight,” said Christian Hoffmann, a money manager at Thornburg Investment Management.
Emotional Henry Kissinger called to say it was worse than a death in the family and Soviet ambassador reported consternation
Margaret Thatchers abandonment as British “ministers ” provoked rips in Washington and bewilderment in Moscow, is in accordance with trade secrets Downing Street file exhausted on Friday.
Henry Kissinger rang Downing Street in a very emotional state saying her decision to resign was worse than a fatality in the family, while Thatchers closest consultant, Charles Powell, told the US national defence consultant, General Brent Scowcroft, that her deviation was a sad commentary on conditions of loyalty in politics.
The Downing Street file entitled The Resignation of the “Ministers “, Margaret Thatcher, includes eulogies from world leaders to Thatcher, a two-page briefing note from the cabinet secretary explaining why an immediate general election was not necessary, and a acceptance action plan setting out a timetable for the fateful epoch of 22 November 1990.
But because these rules haven’t been strictly regulated in the past, many have abused them for nefarious purposes, including selling animals to research labs, as bait in dog fighting rings, or even to people who torture them for fun. One young woman from Portland, Oregon, became the victim of such a seller back in 2015 when she bought a puppy from someone she thought was a reputable breeder. She only got to spend 24 hours with her new friend before being forced to make a gut-wrenching decision.
After coming across an ad on Craigslist for an Akita mix, Kristen Jondahl arranged to meet the seller in a parking lot in Lacey, Washington. She named the puppy Lacey.
She immediately took Lacey to a local vet, where she was devastated to learn the puppy had parvovirus, a highly contagious and life-threatening illness. Painful as it was for her, Jondahl chose the most humane option for Lacey — euthanasia.
OMG, you guys. Today is already a great day. Nick Jonas’ “Find You” music video is eventually here, and it’s certainly, really good. Nick Jonas, the international male of sexy, is always surprising us with brand new music, and this time it’s something entirely, absolutely stylish. Jonas’ new sung, “Find You, ” is the sort of soothing motif to get you in the mood to dance on the beach with a cluster of attractive strangers. Jonas does that in the music video, and it is truly inspiring for me. Can I do that? Is that what a beach day with Jonas is like? If so, sign me up.
Jonas plummeted “Find You” on Sept. 14, 2017, and the whole world started bobbing their fronts. We know where to find you, Nick Jonas. You can find him on the radio until forever because this song is catchy AF, y’all. So what does this music video genuinely symbolize? Who is it about, and why is he driving an expensive auto so close to the ocean? Watch out, dude! One of the melodics says, “I look for you in the center of the sun.” I have no clue what that could intend, but do not watch immediately at the sunlight, beings. It’s not worth it to merely find a whodunit girlfriend that remains obscuring from you. No way.
This is Jonas’ second song to come out the summer months, and we aren’t mad about it. The song, “Remember I Told You” was the catchy theme released in May. It boasted Mike Posner and Anne Marie, and it showcased Jonas’ sultry voice. Mama like. Both songs are completely different, but these are sensual.
One thing is for certain, Jonas knows how to connect with his devotees. In October of 2016, he told
Heartbreak is a topic that a lot of parties relate to — the challenges of the next steps in your life, and when some openings open, and how you approach the next ones opening … I construed pretty quickly that it was a lot of what my devotees could relate to. It’s nerve-wracking when[ the seems] are as personal as the ones that I shared were. But I feel allayed when I use my writing as a style to treat — it’s exceedingly therapeutic.
Jonas is getting deep, and I like it.
Here are more texts to deeply analyze 😛 TAGEND
I took a capsule but it didn’t help me numb I see your face even when my sees are shut But I never really know where to find you
I taste the words that keep falling out your mouth If I could love you I would never put you down But I never actually know where to find you
Where to find you Where to find you But I never actually know where to find you Try, try, try Try, try, try Try, try, try But I never actually know where to find you
I’m guessing, based on the music video, Jonas is stumbling through a sweltering, steamy desert all alone, and finally detects the beautiful California coast. Although one would assume the first stop would be immediately into the monstrous body of water, Jonas instead dances with all the beautiful women on the beach. Hey, we all have our priorities. Is he looking for that special female “hes losing” long ago? Is he searching for himself? Oh, Jonas. You are a strange man.
At the end of the video, Jonas climbs into a Lyft on the beach and leaves. Yes, he gets into a freakin’ Lyft. I couldn’t believe it either, but it happened. Times that have intend, or is it cunning make placement? Maybe a little bit of both, candidly. Although Jonas never seems to find who he’s go looking for, the music video is a yummy treat.
Now, let’s all get out there and shake our hips to this sexy little song and find our inner dance! Afterall, we’re all looking for something.
Check out the entire Gen Why sequence and other videos on Facebook and the Bustle app across Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire Tv .
The five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams has returned to the quarter-finals at the All England Club
The five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams has returned to the quarter-finals at the All England Club with a 6-3, 6-2 succes over 19 -year-old Ana Konjuh of Croatia. She is joined in the last eight by her compatriot CoCo Vandeweghe, who overpowered the No5 seed Caroline Wozniacki. There was more success for the US in the mens draw as Sam Querrey drummed Kevin Anderson in five establisheds to set up a rally with the predominating champion, Andy Murray. Querrey also reached the last eight last year after his upset victory over Novak Djokovic.
The 37 -year-old Williams established her grand slam debut at the 1997 French Open, seven months before Konjuh was born.
Williams served impeccably, making seven virtuosoes and winning 31 of 36 first-serve details. Williams will next face the French Open champion, Jelena Ostapenko, in the quarter-finals. The 20 -year-old Latvian, who won her first tour-level designation at Roland Garros last month, hit fourth-seeded Elina Svitolina 6-3, 7-6 on Court 12.
Vandeweghe is into the quarter-finals at Wimbledon after her 7-6( 7-4 ), 6-4 win on No3 Court. The 24 th-seeded American had eight superstars while Wozniacki had zero.
Wozniacki has already been to contact the quarter-finals at the All England Club in 11 appearings but has advanced to that stagecoach at the other three grand slam occasions, including 2 US Open finals. Vandeweghe also made it to the quarter-finals at the All England Club two summers ago, when she lost to Maria Sharapova.
It was Williams first match since police in Florida rescinded their original conclusion that she was at fault in a two-car accident last month. A fare in the other vehicle expired approximately two weeks later. Police said on Friday that video showed Williams legally entered the intersection and now no accuse has been determined in the accident.
Williams has enjoyed late vocation success over the past 12 months. She reached the semi-finals at last years Wimbledon and arrived at the final of the Australian Open her first grand slam final since 2009 in January, where she lost to her sister, Serena.
When we met, he told me how much he adored me for being so ambitious, so independent.
“You’re not like other girls. You’re so smart and strong. You’ve accomplished so much. I can actually have a conversation with you!”
I was young and I didn’t know that men who said things like this, were not men you should have around. I brushed it off because he was right. I was smart and strong, and his opinions about me didn’t matter to me. He was a witty law undergrad, and he made me laugh. I enjoyed his company. Pretty soon we were dating.
I continued being the girl he claimed to adore, only a more extreme version. I steamed ahead with my own successes, while emotionally supporting him as he quit his job to pursue his dreams. We talked about building a future together. I helped him start his dream business, a box gym, and having been a strategist at one of the biggest global gym chains, I was able to talk him through the process, step by step. Having spent much of my career coming up with names for businesses, I did the same for him. I built his brand, developed his strategy. I held him while he sobbed at night over the erratic nature of entrepreneur-life, comforted him through the fickle nature of customer retention, pulled out charts and graphs to show him that this was a predictable part of the startup phase.
“Nobody turns profits immediately,” I reassured him. “It’s going to be okay.”
I took control of the parts of the business he couldn’t, often without him knowing, because I didn’t want him to stress out further. Because I had experience that he didn’t. Because he was childlike and fragile, despite his muscle and brawn, and I wanted to protect him.
Because I wanted what was best for him.
But I wasn’t super woman. I was working a full-time job, writing books at night, maintaining my own part-time business, pursuing my own dreams. The macro- and micro-managing took its toll on me. At some point, I suggested he take over the parts of his business I was handling, or make me a partner in it. Like a strong, accomplished woman would do.
He got angry.
“I didn’t ask you to help with any of it,” he snapped.
This was the first time I felt reality tilt. I distinctly remembered him asking me to come up with a name for his gym, to find a designer to design his logo, to set up his website. Because he had never had a proper job or bank account, we ran all his digital ads through my credit card. My address was listed as the primary address on all his email servers, his Google alerts, his business and search ratings. To this day, six years post our break up, they still are. Why?
We’d been in his car when he said it. It was a sweltering summer’s day, and we were turning into Strand Street near the Cathedral in Cape Town. I was busy putting the exchange servers for his email into his phone.
“Is it working now?” he asked.
“Yes. It’s working.”
“Thank you so much,” he replied. “I don’t know what I’d do without you, my lioness.”
That’s what he used to call me. Lioness.
On another occasion, he would interrupt me while I was at work with a phone call.
“How do I get a sign made in the shape of our logo?”
It would take me an hour to tell him which printers to go to. To ask for something called a ‘die-cut’. To choose a light wood, so that it could be mounted. I reminded him of his Pantone, so that his colors would all match up.
“Thank you, my lioness. I don’t know what I’d do without you.”
After that day, when I’d asked him for some help, some acknowledgment, he started distancing himself from me. I would hear from his friends that he’d say, “She’s just not much of a homemaker. She’s a little bit… crazy.”
He was right. I was too busy running half his business, as well as my own. Winning awards, writing a book that would go on to get four and five star reviews. Managing his emotions.
It left little time to care too much about cushions and vases. And honestly? It was making me a bit mad. I would collapse on weekends, exhausted.
“Why do you sleep so much?” he’d ask. “Are you depressed?”
Sometimes I wondered if we occupied the same reality.
He came from a wealthy family. His father had bought him his first home, and hired an interior designer to decorate it. He’d never worked three jobs. He’d never really had a proper job, to be fair. I was sympathetic. He just didn’t understand, I told myself.
I cried. A lot. Mostly on my own, but sometimes I’d cry in front of him.
“Why are you so emotional?” he started saying.
“You really shouldn’t drink that much Coke Light.”
“You look ridiculous in those glasses.”
“Are you really wearing those pants?”
He’d look at my body in a bikini, push his lips to one side.
I was tiny. Shrinking. Inside and out.
So small, I’d stopped questioning what was going on.
So small, I’d started believing him.
He in turn, got bigger every day, pushing heavier weights, downing Creatine protein shakes, obsessively staring at himself in mirrors.
“Maybe if I stop eating avo I can cut some calories…?” I mumbled.
But he’d tuned out, absorbed in his phone, editing pictures of himself. Choosing a filter for Instagram that would make his abs look the most cut.
“You should really stop posting pictures of yourself on the internet,” he said to me at some point. “You’re starting to look a bit vain.”
One night, on a weekend trip to attend the wedding of close friends, we were eating dinner, and he finished his food before me. Suddenly he stormed out of the room, slamming plates, doors.
“What’s wrong?” I asked, concerned. “Are you okay?”
I didn’t finish my dinner. I got into bed and stared back of his head. I hated myself for chewing so loudly that I’d pushed away the man I loved.
I resolved to chew softer. To be quieter.
I started speaking less and running excessively.
Ten kilometers became twelve. Thirteen. Fourteen. Fifteen.
Twice a week became three, four, five.
“Running doesn’t make you thin,” he said. “Only strength training makes you thin.”
I’d been a runner long before I met him. Exercise had been a source of joy for me, a way for me to reconnect with my body.
“But I run because I love it.”
“Might as well not bother.”
At home, I would stare at myself in the mirror.
I’d spent much of my life dealing with body issues and eating disorders, something running had soothed and solved. Had it all been a waste of time? At lunches with his family, I’d stare at his sister’s shoulder blades, poking out of her skin like coat hangers; a tiny, delicate pterodactyl in Country Road dresses.
His sister would peck at her food, pushing it around her plate.
“Are you really going to have another piece of cake?” he’d say to me.
I began dissociating, detaching from the endless emotional push and pull.
“I just want to help you. I just want what’s best for you,” he’d say.
I believed him. I needed help. Faced with the apparent disaster that was me, I’d cry.
I’d cry and cry and cry.
“I think you should see a psychologist,” he said. “It’s clear that you have problems. You have pain you need to deal with.”
At this point, I believed him. The pain was real.
I went to a psychologist, who told me that he was toxic, his behavior controlling. This wasn’t what I wanted to hear, though. I was the problem, I explained. So I stopped going to the psychologist. But my boyfriend did not like this.
“You really need to sort yourself out,” he said. “It’s those friends of yours, they’re a bad influence.”
I’d long lost the will to argue. I began seeing my best friend in secret.
“I’m glad you’re not hanging out with her anymore. Let’s face it, she’s a slut. You know I’m only saying this because I love you, right? Because I’m concerned for you.”
“I know,” I said, through tears. “I know.”
My gran died a month before her 99th birthday.
He didn’t come with me to the funeral. He went to gym, instead.
“I’m going for a new PB today,” he’d texted me that morning. “I’ll let you know how it goes.”
When I called him on my way home, I asked if he could help me carry a chair I’d retrieved from her room in the retirement village, a keepsake by which to remember her.
He was waiting outside my apartment when I returned.
“I smashed the workout!” he said. “Record time. How was the funeral?”
I can’t remember what I said. What do you say?
When we got inside, I opened the balcony door so my cat could go outside. He stepped out and found an ashtray. I’d smoked a joint a few nights earlier, with my now secret bestie, trying to ease my grief. Trying to sleep better. Trying to get by. What happened next is a blur.
He erupted into a rage. He smashed the ashtray, pushed open the door, stormed out of the house.
He yelled something, I can’t remember what. I remember feeling fear; physical, emotional. There was swearing. I tugged at his arms, he shrugged me off. I stood in front of his car as he tried to drive away. He revved his engine, me sprawled across the bonnet.
“Just talk to me,” I pleaded.
We were that couple. Neighbours peered out of their windows. After he drove away, he refused to take my calls for two weeks. When he finally did, he was the one sitting crying in my lounge.
“I don’t think I can do this,” he said. “I feel like I’ve been chosen, by God. Like, this gym is my calling. I need to focus on it.”
And just like that, I realized I wasn’t the crazy person.
He still runs his gym. The other day I saw he put up a post, thanking everyone who’d helped him get to where he is. My name isn’t listed there. Like so many women who’ve built the careers of men, I’d been erased.
Latoyia Jarmon, the mother of 8-year-old De’Maree Adkins, tells FOX 26 News that she was driving home with her daughter after getting her hair braided when it happened. First her car was hit then her daughter was shot by a woman.
“She didn’t deserve this, she was just a baby,” says Jarmon.
Sitting at her kitchen table, Jarmon cries because her 8-year-old daughter’s life was taken a matter of hours before.
Jarmon and her daughter were five minutes from home when their vehicle was hit.
A white car that police say may have been racing another vehicle ran a red light, crashing into them.
“They T-boned, at some point somebody from the other two cars that were traveling at a high rate of speed got out and fired at the other vehicle striking a young 8-year-old female,” says Houston Police Dept. homicide unit Detective David Stark.
Jarmon describes a woman firing five to seven rounds at her vehicle.
“There was a second vehicle that pulled up, let their window down and started firing shots at my car and the shots that they fired at my car hit my baby and they killed her,” says Jarmon. She went with her daughter in the ambulance to Memorial Hermann Hospital, but De’Maree Adkins died at the hospital.
Surrounded by family and friends, Jarmon pleads, begging the suspects to turn themselves in.
“I just want the person that did this to know they took away my baby…they took away half of my heart,” says Jarmon.
The basketball legend and social activist who counted Ali and King among his contemporaries discusses Colin Kaepernick, LaVar Ball and Trumps America
Like all people my age I find the passage of time so startling, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says with a quiet smile. The 70-year-old remains the highest points-scorer in the history of the NBA and, having won six championships and been picked for a record 19 All-Star Games, he is often compared with Michael Jordan when the greatest basketball players of all time are listed. Yet no one in American sport today can match Kareems political and cultural impact over 50 years.
In the 90 minutes since he knocked on my hotel room door in Los Angeles, Abdul-Jabbar has recounted a dizzying personal history which stretches from conducting his first-ever interview with Martin Luther King in Harlem, when he was just 17, to receiving a hand-written insult from Donald Trump in 2015. We move from Colin Kaepernick calling him last week to the moment when, aged 20, Kareem was the youngest man invited to the Cleveland Summit as the leading black athletes in 1967 gathered to meet Muhammad Ali to decide whether they would support him after he had been stripped of his world title and banned from boxing for rejecting the draft during the Vietnam War.
Kaepernick, the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who has been shut out of the NFL for his refusal to stand for the US national anthem, is engaged in a different struggle. But, after being banished unofficially from football for going down on a bended knee in protest against racism and police brutality, Kaepernick has one of his staunchest allies in Abdul-Jabbar.
At the Cleveland Summit Abdul-Jabbar was called Lew Alcindor, for he had not converted to Islam then, and he became one of Alis ardent supporters. When Ali convinced his fellow athletes he was right to stand against the US government, the young basketball star knew he needed to make his more reticent voice heard. He has stayed true to that conviction ever since.
Were talking about 50 years since the Cleveland Summit, wow, Abdul-Jabbar exclaims. We were tense about what we were going to do and Ali was the opposite. He said: Weve got to fight this in court and Im going to start a speaking tour. Ali had figured out what he had to do in order to make the dollars while fighting the case was essential to his identity. Bill Russell [the great Boston Celtics player] said: Ive got no concerns about Ali. Its the rest of us Im worried about. Ali had such conviction but he was cracking jokes and asking us if we were going to be as dumb as Wilt Chamberlain [another basketball great who played for the Philadelphia 76ers]. Wilt wanted to box Ali. Oh my God.
Abdul-Jabbars face creases with laughter before he becomes more serious again. Black Americans wanted to protect Ali because he spoke for us when we had no voice. When he said: Aint no Viet Cong ever called me the N-word, we figured that one out real quick. Ali was a winner and people supported him because of his class as a human being. But some of the things we fought against then are still happening. Each generation faces these same old problems.
The previous evening, when I had sat next to Abdul-Jabbar at the Los Angeles Press Club awards, the past echoed again. Abdul-Jabbar received two prizes the Legend Award and Columnist of the Year for his work in the Hollywood Reporter. Other award winners included Tippi Hedren, who starred in Alfred Hitchcocks thriller, The Birds, and the New York Times reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey who broke the Harvey Weinstein story two months ago. As if to prove that the past can be played over and over again in a contemporary loop, we saw footage of Hedren saying how she would not accept the sexual bullying of Hitchcock in the 1960s just before Kantor and Twohey described how they earned the trust of women who had been abused by Weinstein.
Abdul-Jabbar explained quietly to me how much of an ordeal he found such occasions. He was happiest talking about John Coltrane or Sherlock Holmes, James Baldwin or Bruce Lee, but people kept coming over to ask for a selfie or a book to be signed while, all evening, comic references were made to his height. Abdul-Jabbar is 7ft 2in and he looked two feet taller than Hedren on the red carpet.
The following morning, as he stretches out his long legs, I tell Kareem how I winced each time another wise-crack was made about his height. I can tell you I was six-foot-two, aged 12, when the questions started, Abdul-Jabbar says. Hows the weather up there? I should write down all the things people said when affected by my height. One of the funniest was at an airport and this little boy of five looked at my feet in amazement. I said: Hey, how youre doing? He just said: You must be very old because youve got very big shoes. For him the older you were, the bigger your shoes. Thats the best Ive heard.
In his simple but often beautiful and profound new book, Becoming Kareem, Abdul-Jabbar writes poignantly: My skin made me a symbol, my height made me a target.