My 13-year-old LeBron tweet came back to haunt me

My 13-year-old LeBron tweet came back to haunt me

My 13-year-old LeBron tweet came back to haunt me

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A funny thing happened to me this week, moments after LeBron James broke the NBA’s all-time record: I started going viral on Twitter. And not in a good way.

It made no sense. It’s been over 12 hours since I last posted, and this tweet was about Microsoft and the new Bing. I wasn’t even watching the game between LeBron’s Lakers and the Oklahoma City Thunder – I only knew the record had been broken because of an alert on my phone. (As a father of two active young children, I am already spiritually and physically broken at this point in the day.)

Even weirder: the viral tweet in question hadn’t even been sent that day, that week, or that year. No, it was a tweet i started 13 years ago. And it was getting crazy: nearly 160,000 people saw the tweet, which garnered more than 600 likes.

It read, “LeBron James = overrated AND on his way to New York. It sucks being in Cleveland right now.”

Taken without any context, it’s an epically bad take. Indefensible. Absurd. James is on the Los Angeles Lakers. He never played in New York. And clearly, after overturning a 39-year-old record held by the great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, he’s actually pretty good.

And the final irony of this post: I am a die-hard Lakers fan, which is listed directly on my Biography Twitter. I should know better, right?

All this baffled me at first. When the first notification hit my phone and I read the tweet, my instinctive reaction was, “Wow, that’s a stupid take!” My second reaction after taking a closer look: “Oh wait, I wrote that…”

The fact that Barack Obama was still in the White House when this tweet came out didn’t matter to the denizens of today’s sports Twitter, who roasted me mercilessly. @OldTakesExposed kicked things off by retweeting my post, and haters poured in.

“Damn, you look like everything’s wrong here,” said @Loki64746912.

“I admire being so incorrect,” said @OgClutch1.

And perhaps the best insult of @WhackPoser216: “It’s really great to be in Cleveland. How are the Lakers?” Not well, WhackPoser216, not well.

Shout out to @BradRobinson86who came to my defense: “Jesus @OldTakesExposed this is 13 years.”

But that didn’t matter. It’s Twitter in 2023, a place where time has no meaning, trolls roam free, and it seems like inmates run the asylum (Oh, wait…). Not that I care about the punches and the taunts – my phone hasn’t exploded like that since I got former T-Mobile CEO John Legere kicked out of AT&T party. I actually enjoyed the buzz of my phone and a notification from someone telling me I was so, so wrong.

At this point, I think it’s safe to say that my post is horribly, embarrassing. With more than a decade of hindsight, this is clearly wrong on several counts. A new goalscoring record and four titles for LeBron put an egg in my face.

But more fascinating to me: this tweet also served as a reflection of someone completely different from the person typing on a keyboard now. It was Roger in his early thirties, probably in a midtown Manhattan sports bar, one hand on a glass of beer and the other on his phone, quick to tweet. He was actively engaged in the Twittersphere, eager to join the conversation, any conversation. He also would have taken it more seriously and might have gotten a bit defensive about the whole thing.

Current Roger is a lot more social media burnt out and generally a lot more zen about things. So maybe it’s good that it’s happening now. Either way, it’s a refreshing reminder of who I was.

Current Roger also benefits from a lot of hindsight. Remember, it was 2010 and none of James’ titles had yet materialized. My tweet was posted on May 13, 2010, the same day the Kevin Garnett-led Boston Celtics knocked James’ Cleveland Cavaliers out of the Eastern Conference Semifinals playoffs. The loss left Cleveland wondering if their hometown hero would stay, with smart money suggesting he would move to the New York Knicks.

James would announce two months later that he was going to “take my talents” to Miami instead. Seen in this context, my tweet makes a lot more sense (even if it’s still not great).

Twitter, however, won’t let logic or context deter sports fans from confusing one of their own. And I’m totally in. Heck, I would welcome a second helping of backlash if James could win my Lakers another title. I have a glimmer of hope after all the exchanges made this week.

But I’m not dumb enough to post another rash prediction from James. One viral moment is enough.


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