Sunday, March 14, 2010

Define Victory

And another year of basketball draws to a close.

The middle kid's been done for a couple of weeks now, having played on one of the school teams. It wasn't always pretty, but he's one of a handful of kids in his grade who can say they've played high school ball and I credit him for working hard enough to do that.

The youngest had his last games today. His team had a decent season, playing in the highest division and finishing around .500 for the year. It's been a steady trajectory of improvement too, much less painful now than it was last fall.

Still and all, it was warm and sunny today. I saw my kids play something like seventy-two basketball games since November and with tennis and soccer and baseball seasons swinging into view, I won't miss sitting in high school gyms every weekend.

This was a nice way to end, though. Our average-to-middling group of kids beat one team, then another, then another, and all of a sudden they were unexpectedly playing for the state championship and the coach was telling them, "You've earned this, now go out and have some fun."

Storybook endings are great and I wish I had another one. This afternoon, we were ahead, then behind, and then we lost. There were some long faces and a few tears, but it helped when the parents and the other team clapped for our guys when trophies were handed out and by the time the Lovely Bride and the kid and I got home it was time to get ready for baseball practice and basketball was already fading into the past.

"You know, I was never in a state championship game," I told the boy as we were driving to baseball.

My son looked at me with absolutely no surprise in his face. "So?" he finally asked.

"Nothing, I guess," I said. "Did you have fun this year?"


"Me too," I said. "Thanks for letting me watch you play."

"Sure," he said.

"You're a good man," I told him.


Jennifer said...

I see a lot of buzz cuts in that photo. Did your youngest's friend get to your middle son's friends as well?

And congratulations on basketball being over. :) Sounds like it was a good season.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...


(And a note on uniform styles throughout the ages.)

Jennifer said...

Duh... ok, my comment makes no sense. I read this too early in the morning and had assumed it was the middle kids' team... not the recently sheared son's team. After rereading, with adequate coffee in my system... I now understand.

fish said...

The kid on the left seems a bit large for middle school.

Kathleen said...

that's a lot of sports