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Lakers blog profile: Showtime era fueled Cap's Goggles' fanaticism for the Lakers

36429128This is the 17th post in a weekly series that helps you get to know members of the L.A. Times Lakers Blog community. Feel free to send submissions to mgmedin@gmail.com.

Screen name: Cap's Goggles

Real name: Felix Medina (no relation to FCM, unless his family is from Zacatecas, Mexico ...)

Occupation: Currently fun-employed

Age: 27

Gender: Male

Hometown: East Los Angeles

Story behind your screen name: My earliest memory of the Lakers was the '88 Finals and seeing Kareem [Abdul-Jabbar] running down the court. I asked my uncle who he was and what those things covering his eyes were. He told me that that was Cap and those things on his head were his goggles. When I started posting on this blog, I immediately thought of that moment and there you go: Cap's Goggles

How I became a Lakers fan: I could say I've been a Lakers fan from birth but, of course, that wouldn't be true. I guess I really became a Lakers fanatic during those '88 Finals. It was my first real exposure to Showtime basketball and the emotion of the game that I would grow to love more than any other. The sight of my uncle jumping up and down and screaming his butt off at the screen as Kareem sank those free throws in Game 6 to force Game 7 and then chewing his nails off and celebrating like a madman as the Lakers won by three in Game 7 after James Worthy scored 36 points, 16 rebounds, and 10 assists to win the Finals MVP was something to behold and will always live in my memory. In terms of first impressions, that series cemented the love a 4-year-old kid from East L.A. would have for the Los Angeles Lakers as he grew up, and it's a love that, through thick and thin, has truly paid dividends.

Cap's Goggles

Favorite Lakers memory of all time and of the 2009-2010 season: "It has to be when [Robert] Horry hit that shot in Game 4 of the 2002 WCF. I was attending UCSB, and I had to deal with the whole Nor Cal vs. So Cal rivalry that was hitting a fever pitch as the series moved along. I had gone home to L.A. for the weekend in order to attend Game 2 at Staples Center (when they showed the game on the big screen, because it was at Arco) and had to witness a whole weekend of the Lakers getting their butts whooped by the Queens. I would be going home that Sunday evening and I figured I would watch Game 4 before heading to Union Station to take the Amtrak back to UCSB. Lo and behold, I could not believe my eyes that first half, as Sacramento put the beat-down on my team. It was as if someone was pulling the hairs out of my head starting with my sideburns and all I could do was sit there and take it. The second half, as we Lakers fans know, was pure magic.

When Horry made that shot, I was in a state of pure delirium. I screamed at the top of my lungs as the whole neighborhood erupted in whistles, cheers, exploding M-80s (or what i thought were M-80s), honking car horns and complete strangers running out and hugging each other screaming "HORRY! HORRY! HORRY!" I ran outside, got in the car and went cruising down Whittier Boulevard, honking the horn and waving my Lakers flag for what seemed like hours. Later that evening, when I made it back to my apartment in Goleta, all I could do was tease my roommate from Nor Cal and enjoy his frustration with a Cheshire cat grin. I lost my voice for two days because of that shot. It still sends shivers down my spine every time to see that reaction from the fans in those YouTube clips.

54303477

From 2009-2010 season: Favorite moment of the season was seeing Ron Ron rip the ball out of Baby Huey's [Glen Davis'] hands, tipping it to [Jordan] Farmar who passes it to [Pau] Gasol for the Flush on the break in the Finals Game 1. I have that sequence recorded on my DVR, and it brings a smile to my face every time I watch it. Why, you ask? because I knew then and there that we were going to literally "Beat" the Celtics to the title this year. I was sitting with my friend watching the game, and the moment it happened, I said, "We got this series, homie. They are not taking this from us." Sure, the Lakers made me sweat it out longer than they should have, but my prediction to my friend came through. It may not have been pretty and glamorous, but in the end we beat them at their own game, and I'd rather have the Celtics crying about losing by four than 40 because losing close games stings worse than anything. I hope they are still suffering ... especially Baby Huey, ha ha.

Most heartbreaking Lakers experience: I've got three of them: Magic/HIV, Chicky Baby passing away, and Rick Fox showing up to Chick's funeral dressed in the Lakers Sunday whites and crying as he reminisced about the time he spent with Chicky Baby.

Magic announcing that he had HIV was just a surreal day. I remember it was raining that day, and I was just getting out of school. My aunt would pick me up and always would have the radio on KISS-FM or have some other music station blasting from her car, and that day it was silent as a hearse. I opened the passenger door to the sight of my aunt in tears and KFWB news radio running through traffic reports. I remember asking her what was the matter and her telling me that it was so sad. I didn't understand what she meant by that until the radio started replaying the breaking news of the day and it was Magic saying that he was retiring from the Lakers because of the HIV he had contracted.

It was almost poetic really, because when I heard those words, all I could do was stare ahead in complete silence as the rain pelted the windshield. I remained in silence as my brother and cousins entered the vehicle and each one went through the same emotions. I can honestly say I left basketball for that year, as I was just too hurt by the stories that came out afterward and the thought that one of my favorite players was a mere man instead of the superhero I thought he was. I eventually came back to basketball and the Lakers the next year, but that day will always live in my mind as one of the saddest I've ever lived through.

3495384When Chicky Baby died, I was still coming down from the high of winning the "three-peat". When the news came that Chicky Baby had fallen and was in serious condition, I immediately began to pray for his well-being. Chicky Baby had always been the voice of the Lakers. He was the one person who could bring objectivity to the game and call it like it was, no matter what, unlike the network announcers who clearly had bias against the Lakers. To hear Chicky Baby call games while watching them on a muted TV (in simulcast) was a treat, especially near the end, when he confused Shaq and Kobe for Kareem and Magic and Stu [Lantz] would play along followed by Chicky admitting he was waxing nostalgic. Still, as the news came in that Chicky's condition was getting worse, I understood that we as an organization were about to lose our voice, and the pain I felt from his passing grew only more acute when I saw Marge, James Worthy, Kobe, Shaq, Magic, Kareem, Jerry and Elgin, Rick Fox in his Lakers Sunday whites, and all the other Lakers show up to the memorial service on television. I cried as if I lost a family member that day, and Rick Fox's eulogy and the clip of Chicky's last call calling a summer game with Stu Lantz, basically telling everyone goodbye, brought it full circle. (If anyone can find that clip, I'll be extremely grateful). Truly the most heartbreaking Lakers moments for me

Favorite Lakers player: All-time: Magic (courtesy of my uncle recording old Lakers games on beta, I was able to witness some of the most beautiful basketball ever played) This current roster: Kobe (after everything this man has done on the court, who else could I choose?)

Greatest all-time Laker: It's a split: Jerry West /Chick Hearn. One for having a hand in building two (possibly three) dynasties as well as playing his heart out for the Purple and Gold all those years. The other for being the voice of the Lakers, that made the game so fluid and fun to hear and see (when I was muting those idiots on network TV). Simply irreplaceable ...

Last time you went to a game at Staples Center and at the Forum: The last game at Staples that I attended was Game 1 of the 2009 WCF. Never went to the Forum

Opposing team, player you dislike the most: I will always "dislike" the Celtics, Utah and New York. I just cant stand those teams. As for player(s) that I despise: Paul Pierce, KG, J.R. Smith, K-Mart, Amare, and the one and only Danny Ainge earns my top scorn, as I was able to see (thanks to beta tapes) how much of a whiner he was ... which even translates now as a GM.

Interactions with Lakers players: I met Magic Johnson once in Crenshaw when his theater was still open. He was a very friendly and charming man who took the time to hear me stumble and mumble my way to complimenting him. I felt like such a dwarf compared to him (Im 5'11, he's 6'9).

Most cherished piece of Lakers memorabilia I have: My uncle's beta collection of '80s Lakers games he recorded since '83.

Memorable stories about being a Lakers fan: Going to the 2003 preseason game between the Queens and Lakers when Rick Fox/Shaq and Doug Christie and his wife went at it in tunnels. I was directly above the tunnel where Rick Fox ran to get at Christie on the other end. I don't care that we lost that game; it was just awesome to see!!!

--Mark Medina
Twitter.com/latmedina

E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com

Upper photo: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's goggles served as the inspiration for Cap's Goggles' screen name. Credit: Carol Francavilla /Associated Press

Middle photo: Cap's Goggles mugshot.

Center photo: Ron Artest's antics in the 2010 NBA Finals entertained Cap's Goggles. Credit: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

Lower photo: The death of Chick Hearn was a period of mourning for many Laker fans, including Cap's Goggles. Credit: Los Angeles Times

 
Comments () | Archives (28)

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Great profile!

LAKERS NATION ONCE AGAIN THAT MAGNIFICENT BLOG GOD MARK MEDINA DOES IT!!
STILL BATTING A THOUSAND MM!!! WILL THE STREAK EVER END? THANKS MM!
*
CAP’S GOOGLES, Well it’s finally nice to meet once of my favorite Bloggers sir. I see you have
Lived a full and rich Lakerholic life with memories that some of us would die for. Wow being there
for the Fox, Christie Catfight!! I would have paid admission just to see that. Then to top off that
Memory, actually getting to meet Magic!! WOW!!! You sir are a great Lakerholic! Of course All-time
Would be Magic. Hated player Paul Pierce couldn’t disagree but…WHAT ABOUT PRINCESS JIMMY?
*
LOL! I guess we all figured out how you got the screen name and a cool name it is. It was very enjoyable meeting one of my favorites of Lakers Nation up close. Thanks for all your contributions to the Nation and I guess the only other thing left to say is…OUT FREAKIN STANDING SIR!!!!!!

thanks 63! i actually sent FCM a pic of myself, but like me, i guess he deemed that i was to ugly for all of the blogs eyes hahaha.

Cap's Goggles - Say it ain't so! Still, if you had been wearing goggles, I bet he would have posted it.

Wow, another great profile. The vivid descriptions about Magic's HIV announcement and Chick passing away were real touching. I also was teared up all throughout that ceremony, Stu and Rick Fox had me crying like a baby.

Your story about celebrating Horry's shot is awesome. What a great moment that was! Ainge being a whiner then, and a whining GM now - oh so true! God, weren't the Celt's always so easy to hate? lol

Great stuff, now we know how you got that great nickname too, which is (along with 63 Footers nod to the famous Jerry West shot) the best name on the blog.


GO LAKERS!!!!

@63 - Most likely hahaha

@Mamba - you are too kind :) still, i am indifferent to Princess Jimmy. I hated the Decision and i despise the Third Person speak, but i save my "Dislike" for those that have actually won something (Zing) AND piss me off. Lastly, you have it all wrong, I am but a fellow Lakerholic in the sea of many faithful but you sir, YOU are OUT FREAKIN STANDING SIR!!!!!!

". I hated the Decision and i despise the Third Person speak, but i save my "Dislike" for those that have actually won something (Zing) AND piss me off. "
*
LOL! NOW THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT!!!!!
Once again great Profile "Cap" THANKS!!

M24

@CyberCosmiX - Every time i see Ainge on TV the blood just begins to boil. every time i look at my old Betas and see Ainge get fouled hard is like that first scissor cut into fresh construction paper, ooooh yeah hahaha

Cap's - Hey I didn't get your pic for some reason. Feel free to resend it and I can always post the photo

MM

@CAP’S GOGGLES… What a great profile, Felix. Beautifully written. Good to hear you’re a Gaucho like my son. UCSB taught you well. Your stories about Magic’s retirement and Chick’s passing away brought tears to my eyes. I remember Chick losing it near the end and will always love Stu for how he always covered for him. I also had never heard the story about Rick Fox dressed in white and crying at Chick’s funeral. Funny, how those sad moments still bring tears to my eyes but also open the floodgates for millions of great memories.
~~~~~~~~~~~~
TOM

@LakerTom - i should be thanking you LakerTom as well as the whole blog crew. I may not post often, but you Guys/Gals are the reason I read this Blog. without you guys, i dont know how i could handle my Lakerholism :)

i dont know how i could handle my Lakerholism :) Posted by: Cap's Goggles | October 09, 2010 at 01:37 PM
*
Handle your Lakerholism? Cap Lakerholism is not to be "handled" it is to be embraced! Lol!

Great profile, Cap's Goggles!

Hey MM, where's his picture?

Jon K: I watched the same highlight package, and thought the same thing. I've ALWAYS thought that little princess was a BSPN creation. It's their baby.

The coverage they get is pathetic. If they currently devote 5 mins a sportscenter to hoops, 4 1/2 are the meat. Huge news happens around the league, it isn't even mentioned, instead they have a team of reporters debating the leastest bits of meat news: where will little princess sleep, what this, what that...

I just think they're building this team up so high, so very high, that the fall will be all the more sweeter. LeCreep couldn't take the heat in Cleveland? Just wait when the team in Miami falls flat...


GO LAKERS!!!!!

CapGoggles,

I'd like to give props to your profile even though I'm away from home. For a young fellow to remember vividly what happened @ age 4, you're indeed a truly great Laker fan. You hit the buttons of all my favorites from Chicky baby, Kareem or cap goggles, you described them better than LRob. That's what we lacked in the Laker nation today, the golden throat's words-eye-view where you get the real story, not necessarily lakerholic but more to the point. You're the youngest so far and also coming from East LA....I presumed also born in East LA, remember that song. Amigo, I just have one question how many girlfriends do you have? Well, it is a known fact that Gaucho's are the most sociable people among UC grads.

@Edwin -Born (Santa Marta Hospital) and raised in East LA (Right in front of Garfield High School and Whittier Blvd). By the way, do you mean this song:

http://tinyurl.com/2c9nsbs

Wow has the hood changed since the 80's...

by the way, this ones for the whole Blog

http://tinyurl.com/2dqnb5y

Thank you Dfish for RE-POSTING Jon K.'s post because I did not see it when Jon posted.

Jon, I couldn't agree with you more. You absolutely took the words right off my keyboard. It really is repulsive. And spot on.

Cap's Goggles,
Very nicely done profile. Be thankful to your uncle for the memories, and the Beta-tape collection. Congratulations on meeting Magic.

Cap's Goggles,

Excellent profile. Big props to your uncle for getting you started with the Lakers so early. The game 4 vs. Sac stick out for me also because Bibby was on the bench filing his nails in the 2nd quarter when they were blowing the Lakers out. I wanted him to pay for that and thanks to Horry & the gang he did.

I didn't forget that Kareem vs. Thurmond request either. You my friend are beyond your years in Laker wisdom.

This is exactly what most people use to say about Kobe and the Fakers !!!!

Posted by: DFish | October 09, 2010 at 03:12 PM
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Going from a hater of a single player to being a hater of an entire team.

This is what we call "I don't care if I want to bash the team I just want to be right" syndrome.

At this stage very hard to reverse the process.

bravo. that fox-christie fight was the last reallly good fight the Lakers had

Great profile CG! I love the memorabilia that is your uncle's beta collection of '80s Lakers games since '83 - PRICELESS!!! Gotta get those onto a DVR and then send the betas to Springfield, MA!

Cap - great to see your profile...from the barrio to the Univ. of Casual Sex and Beer...lol

It is great to have you as part of the family Felix the cat...and Cap and Goggles gets my vote for best handle...clever name, and only true Laker fans would get the whole essence of it...

I will enjoy witnessing this coming season with you...MM - where's his pic...

Lakers Dynasty - The Next Generation...

#17 Coming Up!!!

@Edwin -Born (Santa Marta Hospital) and raised in East LA (Right in front of Garfield High School and Whittier Blvd). By the way, do you mean this song:

http://tinyurl.com/2c9nsbs

Wow has the hood changed since the 80's...

by the way, this ones for the whole Blog

http://tinyurl.com/2dqnb5y

Posted by: Cap's Goggles | October 09, 2010 at 02:15 PM

===================
Great profile Cap's Goggles!!!
Eastlos in da house.
Great Cheech and Chong memory and here is another for you
to reminisce about and for blog to enjoy.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyrl1G6MUz0

Here is one for you.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uh1STdjCS0M

@Justa - thanks Homie, that was funny as hell

@Cap's Goggles - Cool profile, may your fun-employment end soon. Hopefully the upcoming Laker season can distract you from the rat race.

@Cap's Goggles:

Beautiful profile! Eloquently written. I remember simulcasting all of the home games back in the 80's. It was the ONLY way to go. I've tried to simulcast lately, but the feeds are out of sync. Bummer. I like our radio team much better than you TV broadcast team. Well, of the four gentlemen, I only dislike one, Joel Myers. But, he's the top dog of the three (though some mechanism that has nothing to do with skill or merit IMHO), so what do you do?

I have a funny (at least to me) story about Marge and Chick. Last year sometime, Petros and Money from the Lakers radio station (Fox something or other, they've changed their name too many times for me to even hope to remember) were interviewing Marge because she has managed to stay active with the Lakers. They asked her about the two men who have replaced him; Sipro Dedes and Joel Myers.

She said, "they're not a good as Chick.".

I burst out laughing soooooo hard I nearly crashed my car. I mean nearly crashed! It was so non-politically correct and true that I was totally taken aback. She then went on to say (also correctly) that, "the radio guy is really getting better. He seems to be finding his way. I like him a lot."

She never said anything else about Joel. I don't think that was a coincidence. She is obviously still sharp as a tack. She is an amazing woman.

Well, I digress. I love your profile, though. You are a great writer and a great Laker.

--FEARless

Thanks for the informative post and for actually replying to your readers’ comments. That’s something I don’t see very many blog owners doing and that makes me frustrated. Keep up the good work and I’ll continue coming back here to learn more....


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