Monday, July 26, 2004

Ricky, don't lose that spirit

So much for the theory that only the Internet IPO people of the late 1990s are allowed to retire rich and young.

Ricky Williams burst through that notion like it was the A-gap created by his former teammates on the offensive line.

Ricky, congratulations. You've accomplished something that every hater of your decision dreams of -- quitting a job before 30 with a bankroll that could choke a hippo.

The "fans" and the FFFs -- Fantasy Football Freaks -- will flood the talk radio shows and their corresponding e-mail inboxes with none-too-pretty comments about Williams. You're all schmucks. How many of you, if presented with the chance to quit your job and travel the world and do whatever without any financial care, would still wake up and catch that early train to the office each morning?

Raise your hands. I'll wait.

There, that didn't take too long. The answer is zero. None. Nada. Zip. Zilch. And any other word you associate with nothingness.

Much props to Williams for his decision. A few years ago, I toyed with the idea of walking into a bank, asking for a $2 million loan, then going out and living life for a while. Why the heck not? I'd have the rest of my life to work and pay it off. What good is driving a Mercedes convertible when you're 57 and waiting for AARP's monthly newsletter? But the only collateral I had at that time was my 1984 Marcus Allen home jersey, a copy of "Fletch" on VHS and a few gift certificates to Tower Records.

Williams worked for five years, made his loot and can now experience life any way he sees fit. Ricky, if you're reading this, I sit in awe of you this morning.

And just a little bit jealous. Got any room on the floor? I promise not to snore.