How Kareem came to blog for the LAT

Kareem Abdul Jabbar's blog on the Times website seems to be working its way through his personal African American Hall of Fame — the latest subject is Charlotte E. Ray, the first black female lawyer in the U.S. With recent posts also on the Roger Clemens hearings, fitness over 50 and other topics, it's nicely eclectic so far. The in-house editor of blogs, Tony Pierce, explains at his personal blog how it came about. Snippet:

i rolled into the office around 11 (embarrassed) and started going thru the emails. about 20 minutes in i see an email chain from the sports editor and my boss about the fact that kareem abdul jabbar was interested in writing every day for us. the emails started at 9am.

now most bosses would have called me frantically as soon as the talks started and screamed "why the hell arent you here yet!" but not mine. she totally has a gazillion plates spinning, as i do, and she omg trusted that i would handle this project that was clearly my responsibility. trust professionalism and honest communication. do you see why i love this woman?

so i contacted kareems manager, deborah morales, and we chatted for a few minutes, we agreed to meet on the monday after the super bowl at the times, and sure enough there was kareem on monday afternoon.

"Full license to write about anything that he wants, in any way," Pierce says. "It's a real blog, it just happens to be under a famous newspaper's masthead." Abdul-Jabbar has included a disclaimer about the ads:

The LA Times has placed various advertisements on my blog page. The placement of those advertisements does not mean or imply that I approve, endorse, recommend, guarantee or am affiliated or associated with the businesses, products or services included in those advertisements. I am not responsible for your dealings with these advertisers. Thanks, Kareem

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