LenDale White rips open a pack of cheap cigars, packs in some green leaves and rolls a blunt.
Marijuana is legal in Colorado, and White aches in his head, back and places where a surgeon’s scalpel can’t touch. A little weed now and then takes the edge off, so he will smoke a bit later and avoid the dark temptation of pills.
He has been hesitant to say that publicly because people make snap judgments without knowing him. They think: Overweight. They think: Loud.
They think fourth and two.
Screw it, he says.
A lot of what he is willing to discuss today he has been hesitant to say, but he’s not embarrassed anymore.
“I’m to the point where, man, I’m just … I’m doing what makes me happy, period,” White says.
Happiness is always a little tougher this time of year. It’s Labor Day, and the NFL opens in three days. College football began in earnest the previous weekend.
White, a former USC running back, loves football — loves it — even though it pains him. Even though it makes him say things like: “I’m depressed about football every day.”
Two weeks from Labor Day — this Saturday — USC will play Texas for the first time since Jan. 4, 2006, when the Longhorns were able to mount a late four-quarter rally that made them national