Thursday, March 22, 2012


Since today was my day off I was at the school this afternoon picking up Handsome when he got out. It being a beautiful day, and me being able to pop the liftgate on the back of the jeep and make myself a shelter from the  sun where I could keep relatively cool, he got to stay and play with the other kids for a couple of hours before we actually had to go. I sat in my little man-made cave with my laptop and worked on my novel while he played.

I was sitting there, with my legs hanging out over the rear bumper, when Handsome joined into a game of basketball on the playground. I took immediate interest. I play basketball with Handsome sometimes, and we've developed some rules to make things a little more 'even', and make up for the fact that I'm a head and a half taller than him. Keep in mind that I'm only  head and a half taller than him, and he's nine.

  • I have to dribble the ball while he does not; he claims he can't, not while moving at all, so that gets rid of traveling, double-dribbling, etc, for him . For me these rules still apply, and I have to dribble.
  • He is allowed to practically mug me to get the ball, claiming he has no idea how to guard another player. He hugs me, pushes me, wraps up my arms, and clubs my hands all in an effort to gain possession of the ball. I can do none of these things, and if there's any accidental contact there is an immediate cry of "Foul!", and he maintains possession of the ball.
  • Rather than guard me and try to either scoop the ball or block my shot (he claims he does not know how), Handsome will simply push me at the moment I try to make the shot during a lay-up. He was wrestling at 120 lbs, and somewhere along the way he learned how to really throw himself into a push. He comes at me from the side, and I have found myself stumbling, if not outright flying, across the court time after time.
  • I am not allowed to grab the ball out of the air. All missed shots, rebounds, etc, must hit the ground at least once and I have to grab them on the bounce. If I snag the ball out of the air, even if all I do is toss it up against the bottom of the hoop or backboard and grab it as it comes back at my face, possession of the ball goes to Handsome. This was my idea, and it helps negate my height advantage.

Well, these boys would not be playing by the Handsome rules, and I was interested to see how Handsome would cope when all the rules applied to him as well. Some of the boys he was playing with looked quite comfortable with the ball, and I knew they'd take no nonsense about the rules.

Handsome dribbled the ball. He made rebounds. He passed and shot. He guarded other players, blocking the occasional shot and stealing the occasional ball from someone performing a lay-up. He set picks to let the ball go out of bounds on the other players and give the ball to his team's best shooter.

I sat in the back of the jeep and kept repeating "Holy $#!%!! Holy $#!%!!"

He's no Harlem Globetrotter, but apparently, Handsome can play.

Seems we have to have a little talk about the 'rules', the next time we play....

Talk to you later!

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