PW: After reading “One Hundred Michael Jordans,” I asked myself, why did the last M.J. go to Honduras instead of, say, Indiana or Illinois? Thoughts?
AS: To me, there is still something ridiculously mythic about Michael Jordan, the absolute dominance he could show on the court inextricably linked to the competitive need that probably makes him into a pretty big asshole off of it. It seems beyond human possibility when you watch a lot of his old highlights, and yet, if you’ve read anything about the man, you know he is a massively flawed and frustrated individual still struggling with his need to be the best, to make life itself into some kind of contest.
Since the story is really just a collection of these Michael Jordans continually failing to live up to their originator, I still wanted to preserve some of that myth. It’s very easy to strip away the polished veneer from most athletes these days. Anyone can practically be exposed as a fraud or a fool. And I still wanted some part of this Michael Jordan story to remain beyond the human, to stretch plausibility a bit more (in a story about clones and secret government facilities in South Dakota… I know). How MJ made it to Honduras remains a part of his myth, I guess, for me. That he is still capable of doing things that defy logic (what about all the border crossings—not just one, but multiple crossings, the need for food and shelter, the fact he may be recognized, etc.). He somehow found away, which is what he did so often on the court.
But even then, MJ is not infallible. The world still has its limits. The government does catch up with him eventually. He is not able to swim across oceans. He can’t fly. His skills are limited, his abilities must stop at some point. The Bobcats provide my evidence on that front.