Let me begin by saying, I am very proud of The Man.
Yesterday, while we were at the park with The Beans, he was asked to participate in a pickup game of basketball– two on two to be specific– by a trio of boys less than half his age. He could have been their father, and he accepted.
Lord only knows what possessed them to invite him. After all, he was napping in the grass, wearing cargo shorts, a tee-shirt and… wait for it… Birkenstocks. Nothing about him screamed “pick me, pick me” and yet they did. Maybe they were desperate for a fourth. Or perhaps they were intent on exploiting the 40 year-old hippie dude napping peacefully in the grass. Whatever the case, kudos to them!
Honestly, I was shocked he knew how to play. This was a natural assumption, considering he was a baseball player in high school, I’ve never seen him play, and watching the Lakers duke it out with another team while sipping beer and eating wings from the comfort of our sofa hardly qualifies one to actually play the game, right? Giving credit where credit is due though, his passing game was impressive and he sank several baskets. At one point he even did the quintessential “Jordan stretch maneuver” (aka the Jordan Nike logo) in an attempt to dunk the ball, despite the fact he was 5 feet too short and has never dunked a basketball in his life. This resulted in his left index finger having an up close and personal encounter with the pole holding up the basket. But hey…at least he tried. How many other 40-somethings would have been so bold? Yeah, I thought so.
The Man’s got game. Who knew?
So. The games are over, having been halted by a call from one boy’s mom, summoning him home for dinner, and the other two followed suit, leaving as well. At this point, The Man realized “Oh shit. I’m the old guy.” I gathered The Beans, and we patiently
waited laughed as The Man limped to the car, already feeling the effects of his bravado, aching muscles and…um… age. He, of course blamed it on the Birkenstocks.
The best part though, has been hearing about it for the last 24 hours. The pride in his voice is something that’s been absent for a long time, so I have been more than happy to listen to the play by play, so to speak. On the flip side, the most entertaining is the realization that he is more “Cartman” Jordan than Michael Jordan. Oh, and the explanation he gave the doctor this morning when we went to have the injured finger examined. It’s now in a splint, by the way. This being said, it inspired him to commit to getting in better shape, not only for his health, but also so he can return to the same court, play another pick-up game and walk away talking smack, saying….
“You just got Birk’d.”