I gotta tell you, I’m missing the whole Twitter thing. I find most “tweets” either trite, incomprehensible, or just plain boring.
But LeBron James is anything but boring. So I took a few minutes to sort through his assortment of tweets and twitter postings from this summer to see if I could make any general observations regarding what the guy is all about, maybe how he thinks, what he is like, what he likes to do. You know, things like that.
Here’s what I came up with:
1. From the pictures he posts of himself, you can definitely tell he takes particular pride in his appearance. It seems he strives to project a certain upscale GQ fashion sense. His suits are surprisingly conservative and classically stylish (he even wears tie clips). His wardrobe has a kind of “The 1960s as lived by the Mad Men and the RatPack” feel. Pretty cool look, actually.
2. He may be the leader of the forces of evil, but he is also a father with a couple of cute kids. I’m not sure if I knew that, but I won’t say it surprises me. He comes across as a devoted dad, which is cool because those aren’t guaranteed to anyone. (my favorite tweet showing that is this: “Up early takin LeBron Jr to school!! He hyped!!“)
3. He is a sports nut. He will watch and take interest in most any kind of team sports contest, even those that most of us would probably pass by including high school football (he commented on at least 3 occasions that he was watching high school football) and, most incredibly, the WNBA (he had several tweets commenting on plays by given players made during WNBA games. He even said one game was a “must win” for the New York Liberty. How did he know that?).
4. He loves punctuating sentences with an emphatic “Yes, sir!”. Dont confuse his usage with that of an affirmative answer, though (eg “Did you enjoy the game, LeBron? Yes, sir!”) No, if you want to talk like Bron you must use the phrase “Yes sir” like a verbal exclamation point (“The Ville stood tall tonight!! Yes, sir!!“).
5. He’s obsessed with banal “world” greetings every morning when he gets up. (“Good morning, world. I’m heading downstairs for some Frankenberry.”)
6. He likes little contrived bits of wisdom, especially if they have sort of corny linguistic hooks. Most of them are empty platitudes, some are hard to understand (“There’s no Real Appreciate for a Good Person in the Presence til that Person is at a Distance“). I think he means to say “You don’t really appreciate a good person in your presence until that person is at a distance”. Still, I don’t know why he thinks that is a particularly profound nugget of wisdom. I usually find the opposite to be true. (After someone leaves you get a better perspective on the person, and that perspective is often more negative. Except, I guess, when someone dies.)
7. He sometimes posts pictures of really random shit. Like this and this. In the first case he was tweeting about his chef, and then you get his food, and in the second instance, we know what barbells look like LeBron. That food actually looks good, though. What’s he drinking out of that straw? Apple cider? Or one monster bourbon sour?
8. One of his posts contains one of the best “doubly bad syntax” sentence I’ve read in a long time. LeBron commented thusly on the importance of last Saturday’s Miami Hurricane opener: “This is a warm-up game for them Hurricanes next week“. That’s verbatim. Oh, wait a second. That actually makes more sense than I’m giving it credit. He’s actually talking about the Ohio St. Buckeyes, not Miami. I interpreted the sentence through my Wisconsin prism (“Nice game them Bucks played, hey?”). Sorry Bron. Its still a little stilted. But not as classically bad as I thought.
9. Speaking of them Buckeyes, LeBron really tries too hard to mend some Ohio fences (“I am an Ohio State Buckeye!! Yes sir!!” He retweets something almost exactly identical to that like four times. We caught her the first time, Bron!! Eassssyyyy there, Dick Butt Kiss!!) I wonder how LeBron’s attempted rapproachment with his old fan base is coming along? Don’t bet on any “Entente Cordiale” coming anytime soon.
10. Bron”s a big Muhammad Ali fan, which sort of surprises me (probably more so for the swagger and lasting image than for any of his sundry boxing accomplishments). Oh also, one day he gave a sort of non-sequitur tribute to the Big O, Oscar Robertson, which I found apt, given that I’ve labeled LeBron the 21st Century Big O.
11. Man, he sure loves his chef. He mentions that four times. To me the interesting thing is he literally has a full time chef, with a proper chef hat and everything. I don’t know why that surprises me, but its pretty foo-foo. That kind of elitist, privileged lifestyle might be how he has developed such a tin ear when it comes to public sentiment.
12. Here’s a funny one. LeBron commits grammatical errors in nearly every sentence, yet for whatever reason he out-of-the-blue scolds himself for a there/their usage error. (“My bad on the grammar, been awhile since I’ve been in a class room”)
13. At one point he refers to the Heat as “Team John Dillinger”. I assume that’s a reference to them being Public Enemies.
14. Some of his stuff is occasionally poignant (“No reason to complain about anything when the Man above gives u another day of Life” and one of my favorites “Parent never had a good job, Now its Black American Express Card. Amazing right!”). Notice his use of the singular in the last tweet. The most moving thing I ever heard him say was “Most nights when I was a kid I’d go to sleep scared my mom wouldn’t be there when I woke up”.
15. I think LeBron pulled down his famous “Mental Notes” quote. Damn, that was my favorite. I’ll bet he didn’t erase his mental notebook, however. Its still there, like Nixon’s “Enemies List”. I never did figure out who LeBron meant when he emphasized the threat at the end of the Mental Notes tweet “and I mean everyone!” Normally when I say something like that I’m trying to direct my comment at someone in particular. Safe bet LeBron was too. Query who though.