Think twice before knocking Lamar Odom

If you are anything like me, you work in an office where the women are gossiping about what they just read on TMZ while the men are discussing what is on ESPN.  Sometimes, the two collide in a storm that makes me want to put my head through a brick wall.  One such story is Lamar Odom being placed on the inactive list for the remainder of the season by the Dallas Mavericks.  I hear Laker fans wondering if he will be back next year, while I hear someone see it on TMZ and discuss Lamar and Khloe are moving back to LA.  We often forget that TV stars and athletes are human.  People take personal leaves of absence at times.  So before people discuss that dumb jock on a reality show, or how bad Lamar has played this season, take a look at the man.  This is a guy who was born to a heroin addicted father and lost his mother at the age of twelve.  He was then raised by his grandmother and bounced between three different high schools in a matter of just two years.  All the while, he was able to excel at basketball, being named a high school All American by many outlets.  He received a scholarship to go to UNLV, where he was quickly involved in a scandal.  He received $5,600 from a booster at UNLV as part of a much larger scandal that led to the head coach being fired and the school being placed on probation.  He then transferred to the University of Rhode Island to be closer to home.  He played one season before entering the NBA draft.  He has played for the Clippers, Heat, Lakers, and most recently the Mavericks.  But playing in the NBA has not prevented him from experiencing great personal pain.  His grandmother, whom raised him after his mother died, passed in 2004.  Then in 2006, Lamar went back to New York for his Aunt’s funeral, while in New York, he went to his 6 ½ month old son’s crib only to find him dead due to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.  He admitted it took him nearly a year and a half before he even let himself mourn the death of his son.  Then he met and married Khloe Kardashian, where he became the butt of many reality show jokes.  Then, this past summer, when in New York shooting a Nike commercial, his planned changed as he had to attend the funeral of his cousin who had been shot and killed.  The day after the funeral, he was a passenger riding in New York, when the vehicle he was riding in collided with a motorcycle.  The driver of the motorcycle was fine, but the motorcycle slid onto the sidewalk and into a 15 year old boy…killing him.  So, before you make a snarky comment based on something you read on TMZ, or criticize Lamar for not finishing out the season with the Mavericks, take a look at the man’s life, see what he has had to deal with and overcome, and have a little compassion for a man that is simply taking time to find mental peace and put himself back in a decent mindset in life.  Before you laugh at the next headline on Deadspin, TMZ, Access Hollywood, or ESPN, look in the mirror, and remember that person you were about to laugh at is a person too, and just because they are famous, just might be going through some pretty tough times.

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