So, last night I attended my first high school basketball game since well, maybe, ever. I cannot remember ever going to a basketball game at my high school and if I did, I’m sure it was just for an appearance because I probably left five minutes after getting there. I did not really go for the game, I was there to support my daughter’s cheer team. This is her second season cheering, with the first being a JV cheerleader for JV football. There was not a big draw at tryouts for basketball cheer, so JV and Varsity cheer combined forces for basketball season, so my girl is now a Varsity cheerleader.
I arrived at the game thinking for sure that I would be bored out of my mind when the girls were not cheering. It’s not that I was being negative, I had just assumed that I would not be interested in the game because I don’t have a kid playing. I was so wrong. Our team played so well, the game was so exciting, and the kids in the bleachers were unbelievably enthusiastic and spirited. The spectator students from our school decided to dub the stands ‘Beach Out,” and they were all dressed in beach vacation themed attire. Some wore Hawaiian shirts, flip-flops, board shorts, grass skirts, fanny packs!, straw hats, sunglasses and the funniest of all, was the boy wearing a coconut shell bikini top over his shirt. This beach theme may not sound like such a big deal, but it is the middle of January and it was 25 degrees outside!
Back to the game itself, I can’t help but noticing that our boys use the same 2 plays over and over and over. There were a few times that I found myself laughing out loud at this one move…whenever our teams were playing offense, the same three boys would set up their shot by forming a basic 3 point pass back and forth over and around the heads of the other team. By doing these fast passes overhead, the other team members would be quickly looking back and forth following the ball in the triangle pattern–sort of the way a dog’s head moves up and down every time you stab a piece of meat on your dinner dish and pull it up to your mouth–or like watching a tennis match–and a few times it reminded me of Monkey in the Middle. After no less than 6 overhead passes back and forth, an eyebrow would raise and the ball was inevitably passed to that particular eyebrow raiser and he would shoot for a goal. It was HILARIOUS to me. I tried to explain how funny it was to the woman sitting diagonally behind me, but I’m not sure she even realized it was the same play over and over up and down the court. So there I was, not only at a high school basketball game, but enjoying it AND laughing my ass off. The only other people I know that would find it as hysterical as I did would be my sister and my friend Jen, who lives in Vermont. Man, if they were there, one of us would surely have peed our pants we’d be laughing so hard. I still cant figure out why it seemed as if no one else recognized that it was repeatedly the same play nor saw the humor in it. Weird.
Before basketball again, did I mention that the cheer team has 15 girls on it and that they did a great job? Now back to the game…so the visiting team was getting tired and a bit nervous about the game, so from the beginning of the last period they started getting a little physical with our boys and were using some full contact nudging to trip up our players. One of our defense players stole the ball and came speeding downcourt with his eye on the hoop, but he got bumped, the ball left his hands in an epic fall and slid on his stomach, straight past the goal and into the cheerleaders. The whistle blew, the ball put back into play and suddenly 3 boys from the other team stopped dead on the court while pointing to the circle between their size 13 shoes, looked up at the ref and their mothers in the stands and had horrified expressions on their faces as if to say, “DUTY!” The ref called a time out, the crowd stood up in their seats, the mothers of the three boys were each squinting to catch a glimpse of what their boys were pointing at, and as if in slow motion, the first-aider jumped up from her table and ran to the boys with a towel in hand. The towel was thrown down on to the court within the circle of the boys’ feet and she wiped up what appeared to be: nothing. Everyone sighed with relief and the game was back on. I’m clueless as to what just happened. I was thinking, “was it in fact a duty?” I asked the parent next to me and she explained that when the other kid slid on his stomach across the court and into the cheerleaders, that he had left a dangerous amount of sweat on the floor. I had no idea that this was even a thing. Maybe because I don’t watch basketball. I did a few times when I visited my dad as he became an avid fan just for the last 4 years of his life (I don’t ever recall him having an interest in the game before LeBron joined the Heat and his CNA forced him to watch), but I do not ever remember a timeout for a deck swabbing.
After the game, I was in charge of driving home two cheerleaders and two Hawaiian shirt wearing tourists, one of whom was wearing a fanny pack. Walking out to my car was another hilarious moment for me. I could not stop laughing whenever I saw her fanny pack. She was all serious and everything while wearing a vintage 1985 fanny pack, but what made it funnier was when we got in the car and she and her brother explained to us that it belonged to their mom, and that that morning before school, their mom told her to take special care of it because it was a good fanny pack that meant a lot to her because she wore while on her honeymoon with their father. I was behind the wheel of my car howling while they were telling the story, because they then said that their mom still uses it whenever they are on vacation or go in to DC for the day. From the back seat, I heard, “you know, it’s a real workhorse of a multitasker; it can be a belt and a handy place to keep your personal items all at once while being handsfree.” These kids are so much fun to listen to. They each have such an intelligent sense of humor and when they are together, they can laugh for hours.
So, before we went home, I took them for pizza and the restaurant has a chalkboard strip on the wall behind the booth. As if I had not laughed hard enough, one of the cheerleaders (okay, not my daughter) decided to tag the wall behind her with graffiti, only she misspelled it. Which made tears roll down my face. Again, she has a great sense of humor so she knew we were laughing with her and not at her. I feel like my daughter is having all the fun in high school that I did not experience. Don’t get me wrong, I had fun, but it was an entirely different type of fun which would never have included my mom hanging out with me and my friends. Too bad, huh?