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Friday, June 8, 2012
Mr. Manners tackles NBA playoff etiquette

By DJ Gallo

Kendrick Perkins
Mr. Grumpyface Kendrick Perkins could use a few pointers from our etiquette expert, Mr. Manners.
The NBA Playoffs are winding down. But manners must be practiced year-round.

It’s an NBA Playoffs edition of Mr. Manners!

Mr. Manners,

Mr. Manners
I am the mayor of Boston, a huge pro sports town, but I know absolutely nothing about sports. For example, I recently talked about two of our … I want to say basketball (?) players … and called them KJ and Hondo. It turns out those are not their names. Must I learn about sports? If so, why?

-- Mayor M. (Boston)


Dear Mayor Major Gaffes,

Yes, as an elected official in America, you must at least pretend to like sports. Somehow, being a jock, or at least a wannabe jock, has become a requirement of the job. Remember when President Obama couldn’t bowl? That almost lost him the election, and bowling is barely even a sport. (In fact, it’s not a sport, but being Mr. Manners, I don’t want to offend bowlers.)

Your inability to correctly name a single athlete has its advantages, however. Say the Celtics go on to lose their series. Politicians don’t like being associated with failure, and you would be able to say that you never supported them. “I am on the record as liking KJ and Hondo. I don’t know these other men you speak of.”

-- Mr. Manners

•  •  •
Mr. Manners,

I have perfect vision, yet I like wearing lensless glasses in postgame news conferences. I’m not the only NBA player who does this. Some say this practice suggests I’m not taking things seriously. I just want to look stylish. Am I doing anything wrong?

--Dwyane W. (Miami)


Dear MiamEyes,

In a way, wearing fake glasses is perfect for a postgame news conference. Media members ask “questions” to help them fit storylines that are already written in their head, while players give evasive non-answers. It’s all a big lie anyway. Theater. So why not wear costume glasses? I see no problem with it at all.

That said, you look really, really stupid. No. Seriously. Incredibly, massively stupid. Whichever team wins the NBA title this year will be subjected to unlimited embarrassment when clips are shown decades from now. “Wait, the 2012 champions? Oh, those are the guys with the stupid glasses, right?” This is how you will be remembered by future generations. So maybe reconsider your appearance.

-- Mr. Manners

•  •  •
James Harden
Beards are beloved in sports, according to Mr. Manners.
Dear Mr. Manners,

I flop to the ground at the slightest contact. It’s really over the top. Yet it seems to work, so I keep doing it. Are people going to start hating me?

-- James H. (Oklahoma City)

P.S. I have a large beard.


Dear James and the Giant Flop,

Floppers are one of the lowest life forms. But I’m glad you happened to mention that you have a large beard. No one knows why, but sports fans absolutely love people with beards. It’s just unkempt facial hair, but athletes with beards and mustaches are what many sports fans live for. So flop away. As long as you have a beard, people will love you. Weird, huh?

-- Mr. Manners

•  •  •
Mr. Manners,

Do I have to answer media questions?

-- Gregg P. (San Antonio)


Dear Gratuitous Gs,

Yes. You must give long, detailed, personal answers to every question that the media asks you. After all, it is the media that ultimately pays your salary. Wait. No. That’s the fans. Never mind. No, please feel free to giving one- and two-word answers to any and all questions. It is hilarious.

-- Mr. Manners

•  •  •
Mr. Manners,

I hate everyone and everything. I’m not writing to ask whether this is acceptable. I don’t care and, in fact, I hope it is bad manners. Also, I hate you.

Sincerely Loathing You,

Kendrick P. (Oklahoma City)


Dear Ornery in Oklahoma,

Thank you for your note. While I can’t say I condone your attitude, it’s good that you know who you are and are confident in it.

-- Mr. Manners

•  •  •
Mr. Manners,

I made a lot of enemies a few years ago with the way I announced that I was planning to leave my job in Cleveland to take a new one in Miami. The welcoming party my new employer threw for me and my co-workers also rubbed people the wrong way. I have repeatedly apologized for my actions in regard to both events. I feel I am a fairly good-natured person, am active with charities, and am the best in the world at my profession. Yet I am criticized constantly and it seems everyone hates me. What can I do to change people's attitudes towards me?

-- LeBron J. (Miami)


Dear LeHated,

There is only one way you can end the criticism. You must win an NBA title. But not just win one. You must have a triple-double in Game 7 of the NBA Finals -- with the majority of those numbers coming in the fourth quarter -- and you must cap it all off by scoring the winning points as the clock hits double zeroes. That’s it.

Oh. One more thing. You must do this no less than eight times, because people took your joking “not five, not six, not seven” boast as a literal prediction.

So, in conclusion, you must single-handedly win eight NBA titles, all on last-second shots. Do that and then everyone will leave you alone and you will be universally respected. Best of luck!

-- Mr. Manners


•  •  •
Dear Mr. Manners,

Good job! Good effort!

-- Some kid (Miami)


Dear Young Mr. Manners,

Looks like I have found an apprentice! The young generation gives me great hope!

-- Mr. Manners