Tuesday, December 01, 2009

I will type this one last time, and then I will no longer say, write, or think this. But I am nervous as hell about my interview with Kareem this Saturday in Los Angles. People tell me that nervous people often times are unprepared people, but that is complete and utter bullshit. I know all 10 of the questions I want to ask him by heart, and I even have five other ones I can throw at him, and that doesn't even include the follow up questions that may come as a result of his answers. I know the outfit I'm wearing (which will include this shirt from his foundation). I've talked to all the necessary contact people, I have a photographer on board, I have hotel reservations made, the car is rented, friends and family have been contacted and all that stuff. And still I am nervous.

When I was in college, I used to get this nervous before speeches and presentations, but all would be well once I got in front of the audience and started talking. Since college, I have taught, spoken in front of 500+ people and given all kinds of presentations, and the same thing happens. I get nervous until I start speaking, and then I tell some sort of disarming joke, get the crowd laughing, and then everything is good. Only once in my life have I truly choked in front of a group, and that was due to me being unprepared. I was embarassed that day, and it will never happen again.

But this nervousness has to do with WHO I'm interviewing, not whether I'm prepared or ready. I've looked up to Kareem since I was 9, and my father gave me his autobiography to read. I followed his career, admired his intellect, and I have privately rooted for him to get a head coaching job in the NBA. But until June of this year I never, ever thought I would meet him let alone rearrange my life for a weekend to interview him on the other side of the country. And now that opportunity is just days away, and I'm nervous. I can't sleep, I lose my train of thought easily, my temper flares up a bit more..all of that. But I'm hoping that by admitting and writing it, it will ease (not eliminate) my nervous energy and bring me some sense of calm.

And now, something to make me happy...

6 comments:

Jazzbrew said...

I get the same feeling before performing in public. Gut wrenching nervousness. The bigger the event... the more nervous I get. I've had several moments when I told myself that I would stop playing just to avoid the feeling. But once I step out on the bandstand and play that first note... close my eyes and tune into the rhythm section... I'm good.

Same thing will happen to you in LA. Your writer/reporter skills will kick in and you'll be chasing the story. I can't wait to read it.

rashad said...

Thanks for the kind words sir!

Sab D said...

Simply put - you would not be in the game if you couldn't hit the shot. So know that you skyhook will arch over the defender (nervousness) and swish sweetly through the net.

Just don't wear your sunglasses on top of your head in LA and everything will be just fine.

Repre-damn-sent!!! You da Man wit da Plan!

amy said...

lol @ Sab with the sunglasses comment... although sunglasses on top of your head in LA would be allowed haha.
i know you're going to do an amazing job on this interview man! use that nervousness to your advantage. everything will be just fine, you'll see ;)


oh and thanks for the linkage!

scout said...

Like everyone else has said, you will be just FINE. Keep telling yourself that. I'm sure your enthusiasm and respect will endear you to him and you'll walk out of that interview having met and maybe shared a few laughs with someone you've idolized your whole life, feeling like a million bucks. So have fun! Don't overthink things ;)

sixfive said...

Wow, I had no idea it was in person, in Los Angeles. You'll do great, but wow. This is big! Congrats on getting it, I know it was a long time coming.