WHEN JOHN SMITH RAN INTO LITTLE WILLIE JOHN

As stated in previous efforts, John Smith and I go back to 1967 when he was the Junior Olympic 400 meter champion and I presented him with his medal. Since then, as an athlete, he set the world record at 440 yards. As a coach he has had outstanding success working with Olympic champions and world record holders. If I have to detail all his accomplishments, it means you are not clued in and tuned in enough to get what follows anyway, so why bother ?
John and I talk an average of twice a week, and depending on what is hot, perhaps as much as three times a week. For both of us it is a form of venting about things that we want to keep semi-private, but at the same time feel the need to discourse about. Some times it is just a basic exercise in talking with someone who sees the sport from a perspective similar to your own. And,….if I were to be totally honest, we sometimes just gossip about whatever is juicey out there.
After a recent seminar at which he was asked to speak, John was pretty heated because he felt he was not being fully understood and his work was not fully appreciated.
Brooks, man , I am really teed off at some people.
So what else is new ?
No, man, I mean I am really angry at some stuff, really upset.
Really, what in the hell can that be ?
I did this presentation recently and afterwards I felt like I was raped.
John, who in the hell would want to rape you ?
That’s not funny ! I’ll have you know that a lot of people find me atrractive.
Then what is your issue ?
People liking you, and then have some other people try to “punk” you and take advantage of you is two different things.
Okay, point accepted and duly noted. So what ? What happened ?
I got the feeling that the people at the clinic were not really tuning into what I was trying to get across. They only got the surface stuff and never really got into the depth of what I was trying to put across. They did not understand the authenticity of what I was telling them. They did not get down into the nitty gritty of what I was explaining about our sport. On the other hand, they acted so smug and smart like they knew my stuff better than I did. It was like they were taking something from me and misinterpretting it all to hell, then acting like they invented it. When they talked to me about it, it was all phony and light weight.
John, that kind of stuff happens all the time.
Yeah !
Yeah ! Have you ever heard of Little Willie John ?
Little Willie John ? What the ……you talking about ?
Little Willie John was a Rhtyhm and Blues singer in the early and middle 50s.
One of his songs went like this:
“Meet me in the alley down behind the barn
Don’t worry baby I’ll do you no harm
We gonna rock, we gonna roll
I’m going to satisfy your soul”
So he was talking about having sex, right ? Did he get raped too ?
John you are missing the damned point.
Well just what the hell is the point then !
The music in those days was not as explicit as it is now and double entendre was the order of the day.
Double what ?
Double entendre. What you say has two meanings.
I’ve run into a lot of experts at that —-.
The point I am trying to make is Elvis Pressley Bill Haley, and lot of white singers tried to copy the black Rhythm and Blues singers and made “covers” of their records, like Elvis covered Big Willie Mae Thornton’s ” You Ain’t Nothing But a Hound Dog ” and made it into big hit. The music that black Rhythmn and Blues singers were performing was called “RACE” music by whites and when all these new white artists started to “cover” black songs, they could not call it “RACE” music so white people started to call it “ROCK and ROLL”.
So a black Rhythmn and Blues code for having sex became the name of the new white music ?
Yep, and every time I think about that fact I grin inside because it reminds me of the messy mistakes we can make when we do not fully understand the origins and authenticity of what is being played out on us.
You know what ? That’s what I was feeling after my lecture to these people. They did not understand what I was saying about coaching and training on the authentic level, but they took the shallow and surface stuff and ran with it. They really think they got it.  They just did not take the time to look deep into what I was saying, but ran with the easy stuff.
John, you just met Little Willie John face on.
Brooks T. Johnson
Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.