If your name is Newy Scruggs, Laura Dean-Mooney or Jesus H. Christ, you have permission to stop reading. The rest of you, I'd like you to think back to the last time you were driving while drunk, schnockered, intoxicated, tipsy, under the influence or, if you prefer, merely buzzed.
Last week? Last month? Last year? Last night? Whatever. I've done it. We've all done it.
Shame on us.
The latest reminder about the consequences of one of the dumbest decisions we make in life comes courtesy of Dallas Mavericks' assistant coach Popeye Jones. I've known Popeye for 15 years, since he was the hard-working, over-achieving, dirty-working forward on a mid-'90s Mavs team that featured Jason Kidd, Jim Jackson and Jamal Mashburn. I was there the night he produced a 20-point, 20-rebound game against the Boston Celtics in 1995.
He's a smart, great guy.
Who last Sunday made a horrible decision. Ring a bell?
After the Mavs returned home from sweeping the Lakers and Clippers in Los Angeles Jones hit Greenville Avenue for a little celebrating. A little too much, turns out.
After motorists called to report erratic driving by a GMC Yukon, Richardson police found Jones behind the wheel of the stopped SUV. Popeye refused a breathalyzer, didn't comply with orders to place his hands behind his back and was forced to the ground, suffering facial abrasions. He was arrested for driving while intoxicated.
Popeye has always been a great role model in the community and close friend of Kidd's (he even bought Jason's Frisco home when Kidd was traded). But for a generation of Mavs' fans he'll now forever be the coach that drove drunk.
Please, let's don't call it unfortunate. That's an obscene, misplaced reduction of circumstances. Unfortunate is when you're jogging down the street and an awning falls and kills you.
This was not bad luck, something that happened to Popeye, but rather a bad decision that he made and everlasting consequences that he brought upon himself.
Popeye is an easy name to remember. Try not to forget it next time you grab your keys and consider traveling down the same, sorry path.
I'll do the same.
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