Some lead, others follow

Kevin Cowherd

September 23, 1991|By Kevin Cowherd

THERE IS something missing in my life, and I couldn't get a handle on what it was until I watched Mike Tyson sweep into a news conference the other day.

Look, I don't want to get into Mike Tyson's personal problems here.

I know the man has problems, one being an apparent inability to take "no" for an answer, even when a woman is slamming the door to her hotel room in his face.

In fact, if I were a woman dating Mike Tyson, I'd bring along something aside from my purse and winsome personality when his limo pulled up to my door.

I'm thinking here of a spear gun or small incendiary device for that inevitable moment when, glowing from a few cocktails, the ex-heavyweight champ decides to make his move.

Let's face it, when a man of Tyson's size (220 pounds and built along the lines of a stand-up freezer) feels a surge of testosterone and a stirring in his loins, you need a little firepower on your side -- at least if the amorous feeling is not reciprocal.

But if we can put all that aside for a moment, Mike Tyson has something I want.

No, not his velvet touch with the ladies. Not his footloose and fancy-free lifestyle. Not even his impressive relationship with porcupine-haired windbag Don King.

What I want is his entourage.

At this stage in my life, I could really use the emotional boost that comes from being surrounded by fawning sycophants and spineless yes-men punctuating my every utterance with shouts of:

"Tell it, boss!"

"You're the greatest, boss!"

"Listen to the man and learn!"

Right now, the only shouts that accompany me as I shuffle stoop-shouldered through life are:

"Take out the garbage!"

"Are you still here?"

"Well, that's not my problem."

Of course, the ego factor aside, I also want an entourage for more utilitarian purposes.

I'd like an appointment secretary at my elbow to tick off the day's schedule: 8:45 a.m. -- bring garbage cans to curb, 9 a.m. -- Jiffy Lube, 10 a.m. -- return books to library, etc. I'd like a chauffeur for my 11-year-old Toyota (he'd have to let me out the driver's side; the other door is broken). And I'd like a burly bodyguard to open the door and push the other patrons aside when I sweep into the 7-Eleven for coffee.

And if the cashier points out that I'm lingering a bit too long in front of the magazine rack with that Delta Burke profile in "People," a member of my entourage would snap: "Shut up, fool! Can't you see the man is reading?'

Getting back to Mike Tyson, I read a heartwarming story about him recently that had nothing to do with grand jury indictments or serial buttocks fondling or any of the other non-boxing-related predicaments with which he's become associated.

According to the story, he took his entourage (two men, three women) shopping and -- get this -- blew $40,000 on them in about 20 minutes. Most of the cash was spent on $10,000 gold chains, bracelets and the like.

L "Just a little window-shopping," Tyson was quoted as saying.

Well. I hope my entourage would not expect that sort of thing to happen, as it will be a cold day in hell before . . .

OK. I might spring for a few Big Gulps occasionally. And if it's near lunch time, fine, I might say: "Hey, the burritos are on me."

But that's about it. You can forget about me dropping 40 thou on my entourage, even if I had that kind of iron, which I don't. That's the reason you don't see an entourage trailing me in the first place.

Now, listen, I didn't fall off a turnip truck here. None of this is meant to suggest that having an entourage does not present certain problems.

It seems to me that if you're constantly surrounded by go-fers, PR people, hairdressers, floozies, etc., you run the risk of tripping over someone a dozen times a day.

Also, I would imagine introductions can get sort of tedious, should you and your entourage bump into another big shot and his or her entourage. ("This here's my personal manager, Freddy. Fella over there's Monroe, he's in charge of security. Wilma here's my dietitian . . . ")

But I would be willing to put up with this.

8, Just give me a shot, is all I'm asking.

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