I have a recurring dream. I’m going to school, and it doesn’t seem like such a big deal if I go in my underwear. Only when I get there, it IS a big deal, and worse, I find I no longer have my underwear.
Tonight my dream came very close to reality. I went to school to play in the Westminster Christian Academy Alumni Basketball Game. I figured it would be a fun chance to play pickup basketball with friends I hadn’t seen for a long time and maybe a chance to meet a few younger alums, too.
My first clue that I figured wrong came as I walked into the gym hearing the names of the players announced over the PA system and hearing fans cheering for them from the bleachers. This was not what I expected, so I headed back to the car to put on some jeans and watch the game from the bleachers.
Only just as I was almost out the door someone asked me, “Are you Jerry? The game coordinator was looking for you. You’re on the blue team.” This is when my judgement failed me. I turned around and went back in, got my blue jersey and sat down with the rest of the blue “old guys” team.
Thirty seconds after sitting down it became obvious what a terrible mistake I’d made. WCA took third in the state tournament just a couple years ago, as one of my blue teammates pointed out. Our opposing team was basically that same championship team, reunited. Me? I was a bench sitter my senior year, and our senior year team was bush league anyway. This is when I began understanding why all my old buddies weren’t there. Yet here I was sitting on the bench with my blue jersey, stuck, and with my stupidity on full display to the crowd in the bleachers.
In fact, the fans in the stands were parents of this championship team. I was easily much closer in age to them then I was to all but one of my blue teamates, not to mention any of the other team! They were all still in college I think.
I decided that saving face would mean subbing myself in for a few minutes, demonstrating that even though I was old I could still run with the kids, then sitting down and watching the rest of the game. This I managed to do, but barely. Out on the court is when I really felt out of place. I haven’t played basketball in 12 years. What was I thinking??!!!
Needless to say, this was my first and last alumni basketball game.