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Why would I go overseas?

our-view

One of my favorite pictures. View from my place during my time in Port DIckson, Malaysia

“Anthony, why are you overseas?”
I am overseas because I cannot find a job in the United States within my field. I am overseas because there are no jobs that pay like overseas basketball jobs. I am overseas because I don’t want to cook, or accept part time jobs working with kids. I am overseas because I am treated with respect when I am here. Not entitled at all. Overseas basketball players are worked twice as hard as they would be in the states. You earn every penny you make overseas. The reward can be great, but the risk is just as great.

Love

Love

If you get hurt, you don’t necessarily get the money agreed on. You can lose your life dealing with locals, who can become quite hostile in situations that would rarely take place in the states. The food can get you sick if you aren’t smart about where you eat. Messing with the wrong woman overseas can get a player murdered. I actually know a few stories like that. Hell, my life has been threatened for simply losing a basketball game while overseas.

“Anthony, why the hell are you overseas?”
I am overseas because I can’t marry a rich white man or a gullible man that may be willing to take care of me until I am in a position to take care of myself. I am overseas because I didn’t grow up with a father for a doctor. I am overseas because I cannot afford to do work for 15 bucks an hour. I am overseas because I need money, and the only jobs willing to pay me anywhere near a livable salary require me to jump, run and shoot.

Although I fully understand hoop wouldnt last past a certain age reagrdless of injury or not, the opportunities that I passed up these last five years due to health and other circumstances would have haunted me if I didnt take this opportunity. Outside of being a father, nothing compares to this shit.

Although I fully understand hoop wouldn’t last past a certain age regardless of injury or not, the opportunities that I passed up these last five years due to health and other circumstances would have haunted me if I didn’t take this opportunity. Outside of being a father, nothing compares to this shit.

Hell the only jobs that I have been offered in the last few months since graduating from the University of Washington have all been cooking jobs. I don’t expect Jewish professors to understand, I don’t expect rich Black men who forget where they came from to understand either. I especially don’t expect women of any ethnicity to understand, as Black women are the most educated and most employed demographic in the nation, and women in general have surpassed white men in the work force as well as on college campuses across the board.
I am a Black man, my unemployment rate is triple yours, and my incarceration rates are nine times that of yours. Don’t tell me what I should do, because when I do that, I end up just as stuck, and ridiculed by my children’s mothers for only given them what I have, which is nothing. I have considered selling drugs because despite the risk, drug dealing seems way more logical than waiting for some underqualified asshole to give me an opportunity for a job I’m overqualified for.

Graduated, educated Black man. What do I need to get ahead? More education!

Graduated, educated Black man. What do I need to get ahead? More education!

Don’t tell me it’s okay that I got punched in my stomach at work, or that it’s okay that I am called a nigger at work. Don’t tell me to accept the same things brothers have been accepting since Booker T. Washington’s famous “Atlanta Compromise Speech.”
I know too much about history to accept my place. I want what I work for, and I want it now. I want to be able to live.

“Anthony, why the fuck are you overseas?”
As I sit here in Malaysia hurt, I think the same thing to myself. The feeling that I get when I put matters into my own hands is worth the pain I feel in my left quadricep muscle which I tore the first game out here.

A few days in paradise with my cousin. Love him for helping me get the opportunity. Shit I love him period.

A few days in paradise with my cousin. Love him for helping me get the opportunity. Shit I love him period.

No longer in need of the fake admiration that comes with playing basketball, I don’t desire the attention, I desire opportunity.
As sad as it is to say this, brothers have to leave the country to get opportunities. Brothers have to risk their lives in order to try and be somewhat of an American. Numbers don’t lie, and I would never do what some have done in order to be accepted by a people, who willingly belong to a society that says our lives don’t matter.
As I sit here in the physio office with tears in my eyes, I don’t feel bad for attempting to play again after five years. Not at all. To live, to actually feel like I am alive, to feel like there is a chance that I can live without struggle, that I can be in control of my own destiny is why I am overseas.

You never know what is going to happen.

You never know what is going to happen.

To tell a Black man that he shouldn’t desire to feel free is a crime. Especially one who has jumped through more hoops than most, who has worked his ass off, learning new professions. I took five years, and in that time I struggled and felt like dirt.
It took one week for me to feel good about myself, and feel like I was doing what I wanted to do. It is just sad that Basketball requires my body to hold up to the physical demand required in order to be successful.
Don’t ask me why I am overseas. Do not tell me I am wrong for flying overseas. Please just leave me the fuck alone and allow me to figure out on my own, that I am not allowed to live, I am not allowed to dream.
Let me try and find a way that doesn’t require me to be homeless. Let me try and find a way to be who I want to be, despite everyone and everything telling me who I am supposed to be.

Brothas enjoying life

Brothas enjoying life

For any Black man ready to discredit my experience, I get it, I can’t knock you for making it or feeling like the blame should solely be on us, but I ask you to at least understand that my experience is mine alone, and how I feel is based on my life.
For those that understand, please keep your head up and continue to tear down barriers. Continue to defy the odds and fight.

Peace, Love and Progress…


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