Wednesday, June 08, 2005

"Becks and Me"

Sometimes a job isn't just a job. Sometimes you gotta suck it up, lace up those 'boots' and get it done, no matter how annoying and time consuming. If that's your job, I'm sorry. For me, it's the exact opposite. I recently had the incredibly rare opportunity to play one on one with the Michael Jordan of soccer: David Beckham. David. Beckham. Becks. Call him whatever you want. Some people call him the most famous soccer player in the world. Beckham hails from England and in England, they call soccer "football" so for this blog, so will I. After all, “Becks” is the face of "football" universally so who am I to argue with him?

We were the only television outlet to be given this type of access to Becks. It makes sense, though, doesn't it? We are Access Hollywood...and we stand by our name. He was in Carson, California at the Home Depot Center, a beautiful, state-of-the-art Soccer Stadium, to announce the U.S. formation of The David Beckham Academy (www.davidbeckhamacademy.com), a week- long football training camp targeting boys and girls aged 8-15. While I can go on and on about the benefits of such a camp, I mainly want to talk about my new friend Becks, and how impressed I am with him. I'll also touch on how incredibly lucky I am to have this job.

You may also know David Beckham as the more athletic half of the David Beckham/Victoria "Posh Spice" union. This is a man who seemingly has everything working in his favor. He has movie star looks (and doesn't rule out dipping in the Hollywood pool at some point), world-class athletic skills, a gorgeous wife, three healthy beautiful children, millions of fans worldwide, and more money than he can count. Did I mention he is all of 30 years old? Well, the man is just 30 years old. I am 29. I have a lot of work to do. Seems I can count my money. Anyway, back to Becks.

I was unsure of how the interview and subsequent shoot would go. I wondered how receptive would he be of the expected "why is this academy so important to you" questioning. I anticipated rehearsed, standard answers. Instead, I found him to be forthcoming, kind, and intuitive. He seems to genuinely appreciate all I mentioned above.

He seems to understand his success comes as a result of hard work, helped out by attending camps like the David Beckham Academy as a young football player in England. He is also very aware that without football, aside from his family, the other benefits like money and fame would not be his to enjoy. In the end, he told me, his main priorities in life are his family and football. I think I could read through the B-S if he was feeding it to me so my impression is he is completely aware how priveleged his life is.

In preparation to "Bend It Like Beckham", I went out and bought all the best workout gear - I was Nike'd out! Only problem? Becks endorses Adidas! When his camp saw me come out in my Nike apparel, it was like a Congressional Delegation meeting as they quickly figured out HOW to fix the problem! I ended up wearing a British football players' David Beckham Academy uniform, and (poor me) the brand new Adidas Predator Pulse football 'boot', the latest 'boot' (shoe) unveiled by Becks himself the night before in NYC. I tell ya, what a job I have!!!

I am an athlete but I have never played much soccer so I asked Becks to show me the top three drills he stresses at his football camps. Maybe he was blowing smoke up my butt because the cameras were on us, but he said I am very good! Call me naive, but I think so too! It doesn't hurt that my teacher is one of the best in the world! To make a short story even longer, he taught me to really bend it like Beckham then we wrapped it up.

There are some really cool perks that come with working on Access Hollywood, but even interviewing celebrities on the red carpet and attending movie premieres can't top this once in a lifetime opportunity. Becks said he might consider a move to U.S. soccer after his contract is up with Real Madrid. If this happens, expect to see soccer become as popular as football, baseball, and basketball in the states. Seems Becks has that unique mix of talent, looks, and charisma to do for soccer what Michael Jordan did for basketball. And take it from me; if you or your children admire him, it's for good reason. I certainly do. And for the record, I got to keep the “boots”!

10 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Addie-

Enjoyed your Becks piece...unfortunatley, I don't think Americans will ever embrace soccer as the Europeans have. (Just as Europeans won't embrace our football.) I have been lucky enough to have travelled much of the world in my job as a producer and have witnessed the huge fanaticism of soccer everywhere - but here. And remember, basketball was already huge in America when Michael Jordan lifted it to a new level.
Anyway, enjoy the blogs and admire you and your interesting life so far (young as it is!)

R

10:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i wanna know how i can get a copy of your becks piece if you can please get back to me i would really love a copy seeing as i missed it email me at gammahombre@yahoo.com

10:28 AM  
Blogger SMSGT SMITH USAFR said...

Addie,
Love your article! It sounds like your having a great time on the job. I have traveled around the world with the military and seeing the inspiration of the sport abroad, hope that soccer (football) becomes an american favorite in the near future.
Thanks for writing your blog, it has inspired me to start one too, it's not as inspiring as yours, however someday it may. genesmith.blogspot.com

7:31 AM  
Blogger MCRiggs said...

Addie - you lucky dog. You're all introspective...and I'm just sitting here thinking Damn, he's hot.

Melissa

9:49 AM  
Blogger MCRiggs said...

Addie - you lucky dog. You're all introspective...and I'm just sitting here thinking Damn, he's hot.

Melissa

9:50 AM  
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9:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey addie hoep you have not forgotten about me you said you were going to try to send me your beckham piece if you can please tell me if you are still gonna be able to do that thanks gammahombre@yahoo.com

3:28 PM  
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