Cleveland Cavaliers VS Golden State Warriors Preview

Beth Pepoy:

NBA Finals Preview and Prediction

Originally posted on Stiletto Stomping Sports:

Looking ahead at the NBA Finals it is hard for anyone to be objective. Both teams have a need and a want to achieve the elusive title that rankles and ails each franchise. Cavs and Warriors have MVPs, rookie coaches, each have beaten the other at home and have squads made up of inexperienced players except for one.

LeBron James will be a major factor heading to the Oracle Arena.  The big reason is that he did not play against the Warriors at the Oracle.  The rumor and record state how hard it is as a visitor to win at the Oracle but the same can be said about the Q.  Home court advantage proved to have little impact on the Cavs and truthfully I have the impression they would rather travel first and then come home.  This is where LeBron makes the difference.

His ability to keep the Cavaliers on point…

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Beth Pepoy:

Together! It’s Time!

Originally posted on Stiletto Stomping Sports:

Are you from Cleveland? The Northeast Ohio area? Did you grow up there in the last 50 years? If the answer is yes then you will feel the words printed. If not then you may just shrug it off.  OR you may just hear what is posted on my blog!

Dreams in Cleveland are cut from the iron ore that once rested on the shores of Lake Erie. Those dreams can easily be shattered by the frigid winds that clip across the Northcoast with the fury of a stealth bomber. Faster than the speed of light and quieter than a ninja warrior closing in on the target.

Growing up here meant having a great sense of humor, the ability to dust yourself off and try again and facing the fact your dreams may need to take on a different direction.  Yet never to be abandon.

So many times the city…

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Why It Matters

Big Markets have the names; New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. Big Towns, big celebrities, big traffic and big championship victories. Medium and small markets tend to have layovers for a couple hours and not always touristy unless it’s the holidays.  The occasional underdog victory and championship or so it’s always been the thought.

However, there are a lot more medium and small markets with more than a regional or local fan base. This point can easily be made from anywhere. However 50 years is 50 years. I’ll let you figure the geography.

When you’re from Cleveland or a fan of Cleveland sports it safe to assume Cleveland isn’t in the trendy big market group.

It is however away of life, no matter where the road of life takes you. And it’s pretty noticeable when in a crowded room that is filled with fans for the other team , one solidly loud  blasting cheer being heard over the disappointed group might just stand out a little and the shrouded possibility of not being invited back. It’s Love and loyalty. Also for those fans who live out of town a lot of ” whys” and ” Oh admit it you want to cheer a winner for a change.” Uh yes but we want our team to be that winner! The reason?

It’s simple.

We love a city, and the teams that represent that city. Cleveland has a deep history of greatness and rock bottom events. Clevelanders are likable, humorous and can change from the predictable norm to the exception to the rule faster then Clark Kent can become the Man of Steel.

Together we have waited over 50 years. Together we have watched the ups and downs. But the loyalty remains and outside of the area that loyalty amongst fans who have had to move for various reasons are just as true. We tend to be extremely thankful for the Internet, cable deals and calling back home more often after games then on holidays. ESPN can never carry enough highlight footage either!

For most of us it’s home. The lessons we garnered as kids, to understanding why Cleveland is a preverbal punchline and taught those jokesters we can tell a few ourselves. We get it. It’s funny. Cleveland is fun to say , and you almost can’t say it without smiling a little.  Trust me it’s not a cure for the blues. Still there’s always a bright side and a “wait for next year” quote lingering after we poke fun at ourselves.

This city is so much more, just look at the many brilliant and talented people who grew up here. They changed medical science, the entertainment industry, they became inventors, oil barons, sports heros and gave a name to rock ‘n’ roll. In return they inspired others and left behind a deep and rich history for all those still growing up in Northeast Ohio. Furthermore, a legacy in the preciously fragile beauty of a dream and the overwhelming excitement when it comes true.

The Cavaliers matter on all the various levels. LeBron came home after a very hard to swallow departure. He was criticized when he showed his Buckeye pride while injured watching a team with the biggest heart in college football defy all odds and made history happen.

What ? You don’t think that didn’t hit home with the King? Surely you jest! His heart was out there for all to see in the first game back at the Q. So after watching The Ohio State Buckeyes win the national championship title with the third quarterback of the season, a little Buckeye Pride didn’t rub off on the Cleveland Cavaliers? Didn’t they start a surging journey and began to gel their talents and passions together after that? Hey next man up and bring it.

Well the Cavs showed it today and after their victory made statements that sounded like LeBron’s Nike commercial ” For them! For Cleveland! Together!”

Home is where the heart is. Home matters whether it’s looking at an old picture or overcoming obstacles in the wallet  to get back in time for the holidays or special events.

Home for a Clevelander is all of that and knowing those glory days heard from people who have gone on to be parents, grandparents , great grandparents and have departed but are very much a part of our hearts where they are still young, and very much alive.  It’s a tribute to them. It is a reminder for those who have waited for so long , all dreams take time and work, but never quit, and never give up!

And it will become an ushering in of a new day, a new era, and new beginning for a city, an area, and region that has changed with the times but never seems to waiver in what the rest of the world has forgotten. The value of loyalty, the power of a simple dream and that when you follow your heart it can lead you to something great.

Which may just be home.  Whether it’s your city, your family, or getting out of work a few minutes early to watch the game with your Parents and your kids. That city lettered on those jerseys, from the less shiny towns across the country, speaks volumes for the medium and small markets in one word HOME!

And THAT’S why it matters.

A Single Step

Beth Pepoy:

Just a Monday morning thought…

Originally posted on Operation Discovering Me:

With a single step I can move forward.
I can move towards a destination.
I can overcome obstacles of pain or dismay.
I can move past hurt and distain.
I can forgive and forget.
I can celebrate joy.
With a single step I can give and receive.
I can honor and love.
I can embrace and give hugs.
I can let go of the past.
With a single step I can start a journey.
I can have an adventure.
I can take a chance.
I can receive blessings.
With a single step I say no to fear and hello to life.
I can be the who I long to be.
No one can take that single step but me!

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From Cleveland with Love, Thanks LeBron

Beth Pepoy:

There is no place like home!

Originally posted on Stiletto Stomping Sports:

ClevelandCleveland, Ohio– 41° 29′ 57″ N / 81° 41′ 44″ W ,  Area code 216

On the shores of Lake Erie, County seat of Cuyahoga.

Being from Cleveland has been the greatest experience of my life.  Since the beginning of 2014 a strange event has been happening– the winds of change have finally hit the North Coast rolling up on to the shores of Lake Erie.  For nearly 50 years Cleveland has been starved for a return to greatness.  Anyone from here, no matter where they live now are the loyalist of a city that has seen more ups and downs from every aspect that life can throw faster then a Heater from Van Meter, a Bob Feller’s fastball.

People from outside of the area do not understand and sit in shock over the announcement from LeBron James. For those born after 1964 in the city will not remember the great days, nor do they care to…

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Dad’s Newpaper and His Portable Man Cave


In the modern world a man has his special room called a man-cave.  Placed and held in high esteem, usually scattered everywhere are all the precious pieces of “junk” (as Mom calls it) that he endears and has stored. These new modern caves with the 60 inch flat screen LCD, HD, gaming systems and internet access televisions, that include enough sports paraphernalia to inundate the masculine senses with a euphoric high, grants the man of the house a lion’s den pride amongst all the modern reveals of interior design. Long before the modern standard in boys with toys comfort, there were a few simpler precursors that where once en vogue, well sort of.

Men, while they were still boys were a little more primitive in their needs and mud grimed clothes were the utmost in their fashion attire.  After all, “throw some dirt on it” is still a boys best medical lament.

Those early man-caves were called forts, tree houses and club houses. Incredible early marvels of construction made with used nails, scrap wood and a lot of “junk” (hmm Mom maybe onto something) they found from everywhere. Mother’s back in time believed that Tide, Whisk, All-Tempa-Cheer and Clorox  would relieve the stained fabrics of the newly bought starch white church shirt of  beastly grass, oil and dirt from their precious angel’s clothes.  Secretly, they counted on stains to catch little sweet Johnny in a lie of his where abouts.  Ah the days of innocence that forge a boy’s soul to manhood and the expectation for youthful males to demonstrate skills for the future.

I suspect boys, who grew up when my Dad did, never quite imagined what a discarded cardboard box, broken fence parts, mud splattered spackle and rusty nails of engineering could evolve to.  For once Dad was groomed to my mother he discovered all things male would be placed in the garage.  Yes the garage, tool bearing, oil smelling, trash can holding pre-modern versions of the Man-cave.  The other high-end domicile of masculinity was…wait for it…..wait for it……

“The John” why else would it be called with a male gender name? Oh yippee, (sigh) the pride of Charmin and the Sears’ catalogue. Do something wrong in our house and a stiff punishment could be having to clean up after a recent visit by the only male in our home.  If you saw Dad enter with the newspaper it could be awhile, better grab a clothes pin, Windex, scrub brush and gloves.  I looked more like a mad scientist preparing for a new experiment then someone who just hacked off Mom for not getting my book report done.

These two places varied in size and structure, both places did however, make Spanky and the gang’s He-man Women Haters Club look far more luxurious and, grand in splendor with the added bonus of being in a really cool tree.  I am also willing to bet to this day, Dad quietly wished over an hourglass for a Delorean that would transport him back to his first cave once my sister and I started driving.

What was truly ingenious of Dad was his portable man-cave.  Yes my dad, that wryly creative soul, discovered by carrying a newspaper everywhere, he could camouflage his secret desires to stealthily sneak off to see a man about a horse or tinker around in the garage with the other pioneers of pre-cave amenities for a quick beer and never being able to remember to take out the trash.  Simply said, this mild manner male figure of patriarchy, once seated at the dinner table in one smooth motion could miraculously disappear behind the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Never to be heard from unless a disagreement between the females ensued, the female gender canines begged too much or I said and did something that either invoked humor or evoked Mom, usually I could do both at the same time.

The black and white pages of boring stuff (as I referred to it) would shake up and down from his laughter.  If you need to get his attention just knock on the printed pages and you would hear a drawn out “yeeeesss?”  Sometimes if he was really deep into the man-cave of published fish wrap you might have to knock harder or comeback later, which usually meant he was going to stay out of it, or how much was it going to cost to replace.

The portable man-cave was Dad’s method of choice over the garage and the bathroom.  His deployment of the paper gave him the ability to listen to the on goings of his home, afforded him the title of king of the selective hearing and gave the appearance of being present.

Then he would always with out delay, fold the newspaper and comment on everything he heard.  He offered suggestions, asked questions and cautiously warned me to stop cutting up the paper for school until he had a chance to read it.  Many great moments with my Dad have and still are sitting around the kitchen table when I return home for the holidays.

Perhaps the greatest conversation was when I had pushed my luck too far with Mom.  His words have stayed with me like the coffee cans in the garage filled with rusty old nails.

“My darling child remember this; the choices you make now are the lessons you will learn later. Cherish each lesson the way that I cherish and love you.”

Just like a coffee can of old nails you don’t know why you have them but you never know when you are going to need them.  His words on that day didn’t make me feel better nor get me out of trouble, further I didn’t understand why he said what he said. All I knew was he loved me and wished me well in my choices.  Years later, those words can still bring me solace and have been a constant mantra while raising my own family. Like the old nails in the garage his words were waiting for me to use when I needed them.

Today the newspaper for Dad has been replaced by an IPad, he has his own study (still filled with junk according to Mom), he has more male support in the house with the dogs and grandsons who reside there.  Yet in his real cave, (his inner self) is the most precious gift that he gives to all of us regularly. The gift of his generous, loving and brilliant heart.

Happy Father’s Day Dad!  I love you with all my heart!

PS I am thinking of redoing the bathroom any suggestions?  Just kidding!


The Sun, Moon and the Stars..From My Slumber to Reality

Beth Pepoy:

Dreams and the encrypted messages tell the story of you.

Originally posted on Operation Discovering Me:




The night was misty and sleep was not arriving with the usual exhaustion I had grown to expect.  It was another day when I was faced with not enough time, too much on my plate and a brain that just didn’t want to rest.

The pang in my heart was repeatedly asking why I didn’t have the right person in my life to share moments like this, to distracting my thoughts and redirecting my brain to, hunting for the missing sock that probably was enjoying coffee with my safe place that I put stuff I don’t want to lose.  You know that place that is so safe you forget where it is.

Dreams have often been described by experts as the place where the subconscious speaks through beautiful but odd imagery and horrifies to the point of  facing the denials the conscious self is willing to ignore.  I had spent the day…

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The Debate Wages On with PolitiJim! Join in if You Dare!

Beth Pepoy:

Yep that green bird and I are still at it!

Originally posted on Stiletto Stomping Sports:

Oh Yes PolitiJim and I have a debate going! Join in the discussion if you dare!


Yes. The debate DOES continue.

Clearly some of the Fukushima radiation has made it to the Louisiana coast and become a glowing garnish for your gumbo. Now hang on, I don’t want you to fall off of your stiletto sneakers, but here is my rebuttal to your rebuttal to my rebuttal.

First, you didn’t address the core of my argument. Previous Triple Crown winners WON! Many against even worse situations. (like Seabiscuit) IT IS WHAT MADE THEM GREAT. Lowering standards so that more can win is a principle that is far beneath a woman of class and intelligence such as yourself.

Second, the “rules” interference, drug testing and blocking are not being put in place so that a “favored” horse can win. They are put in place so that all have a fair chance…

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Wagering on The Rules of The Triple Crown Will Change? Don’t Be a Dumb A**!

Beth Pepoy:

The debate continues

Originally posted on Stiletto Stomping Sports:

My good friend PolitiJim response to my blog Rust on the Chrome, All or Nothing!
Now I don’t normally post like this and I hope PolitiJim is cool with it. The point is that these debates or discussions will end in dead heat.

PolitiJim’s comments:

I’m of a differing opinion. As it turns out there are more horses that qualified for the Derby racing these past years than in era’s before. When Affirmed won the Triple Crown in 1978, he faced four horses in the Preakness that had not run in the Derby.

Affirmed faced two horses in the Belmont that skipped the Preakness, one of which didn’t run in the Derby either.

Since when did horse racing suddenly get kindergarten self-esteem syndrome? You know the one that says we have to give everyone a medal so they feel good. The corrosion of the value of merit.

Isn’t one of…

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Keep Calm and Carry a Fairy Godmother

Originally posted on Operation Discovering Me:

I never cared for Mary Poppins telling Mr. Bank’s children that when the wind changes she would know when to leave. I also much preferred a magical Fairy Godmother that could turn my rags to silk, place glass slippers on my feet, and tell me that I need to go and enjoy the ball.


However, I better remember my curfew, or else everything around me will turn into the mess just like the day after Halloween–smashed pumpkins on the doorstep, toilet paper in the trees and that loving Fairy Godmother suddenly appears to be the disgruntled parent ready to pounce and hand down a sentencing.  After all, the vandalism (which is never confused with modern art) had to have been done by friends.

Over the last 10 years I have been in a hunt for my Fairy Godmother and I want to let her know this; Prince Charming wasn’t a prince, my kids…

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