I don’t have anything present day to complain about so I thought I would delve into another throwback moment that randomly popped into my head the other day. When I was growing up I played on some intramural basketball team. I struggle to even accurately place how old I was at this time but I am guessing maybe 12ish. By this age I had already displayed height for my age, which normally would be a good fit for basketball. However I was never great and on my team there were other kids that took the ball most of the time.
Well this one week we were playing a team that was short a player and I somehow wound up being volunteered to play on the other team since my team didn’t seem to think I was very valuable anyway. I’m not sure if chip on your shoulder mentality kicked in but I had my best game of organized basketball of my life, scoring more points by far than I ever did with my original team. I think we actually won that game but even if we didn’t I recall one of my earliest feelings of “fu” athletic satisfaction, turning the tables on the team that didn’t think I could do much.
I never played organized basketball after that, only occasional one on one games with friends. As I grew to my full height I became focused on trying to legitimately dunk a basketball on a regulation height rim. I sort of was able to do it but never as cleanly as I was aiming for. I remember one session at the Brecknock elementary school I tried so many times that I ripped open the skin on my dunking hand (right). Because of the weird way my brain is cross wired, I could only do the approach and jump going off my left leg. If I tried on the right I would look like a newborn deer trying to stand.
Later in life during the 10 years or so I played volleyball all the time I was able to pretty consistently jam a volleyball into the hoops at the gym we played indoors at. That all ended when I tore my meniscus when I was 31 or 32, I never approached those heights again.