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three things i'd like to quote from bill simmons, aka the sports guy, from today's column:

"enduring hope for 2011: that you have a happy and healthy new year."

i share this hope for you.

"i can't take it anymore. any time there's a 90 percent chance you're going to end up unhappy, what's the point?"

i can get behind this sentiment. and just like him i'm going to chase the 10 percent.

and finally, because even though he's a sportswriter, he tells stories like i tell stories:


I flew to Oklahoma City on Wednesday to cross "See Durant play a home game" off my bucket list. After the Zombies thrashed the Nets, I joined some friends at Mickey Mantle's (a local restaurant) for a late dinner and a few beers before heading back to my room. I was staying at the Skirvin, a local hotel that's supposedly inhabited by a ghost named Effie. As legend has it, Effie got knocked up by the guy who owned the hotel back in the 1920s, then jumped out of a window with the baby. She's been allegedly haunting the place ever since.

When we were checking in, I jokingly asked the clerk to put me on one of the haunted floors. She claimed that she did. We laughed and that was the end of it. That night, I was so tired that the ghost stories never entered my mind. I got ready for bed, called my wife, watched 10 minutes of "SportsCenter" and fell asleep. So you know: I am a heavy sleeper. Once I'm out, I'm out.

That's what made it so strange when I woke up at 4:30 with my heart pounding. I swear on Tom Brady's ACLs that the following happened: At first, I heard a baby crying and realized that was why I woke up. I thought it was one of my own kids before remembering that my kids weren't babies anymore, then remembering that I was in Oklahoma City and not Los Angeles. Suddenly, it dawned on me that I wasn't alone. I had an overpowering sensation that someone else was in the room. Until you've experienced that feeling, you can't understand what it's like. Your blood is swishing through your veins at 200 miles an hour, only you don't understand why -- your body reacts a few seconds before your brain does.

I decided to turn on the light. Stretching to my right for the switch, out of nowhere, I heard the sound of (what sure as hell sounded like) a baby crying urgently to my far left (right near the window). Wahhhhhhh. Wahhhhhh. Wahhhhhh. Wahhhhhhh. The urgency freaked me out just as much as the crying itself. I fumbled for the switch, couldn't find it, fumbled, fumbled some more, then finally turned the light on. The crying sound stopped. I hopped out of bed and turned on every other light in the room. I turned on the television and jacked up the volume. Then I grabbed my BlackBerry and Googled "Skirvin crying baby."

A slew of results came up. See for yourself.

I kept the lights on. And the television. And that's how I spent the next three and a half hours -- half-asleep, half-awake and totally spooked. The words "Man Up" did not enter the equation. Not even a little. I came to Oklahoma City for Durant and Westbrook and left telling stories about Effie's baby. Just know that the next time someone tells me a ghost story, I will believe them.

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