Thursday, March 01, 2007

Champ vs. Chump

My apologies for yesterday's silence. I woke up Wednesday morning sweaty and cold. Given that I had not engaged in hanky panky the night before nor was I afraid of what might lay under my bed, I could only assume this meant I had a fever. I also felt like crud which confirmed my postulation. Interestingly enough, illness is not conducive to blogging.

Yet today, like half-defeated strep throat, I am back. I had a fever and more cowbell did not help (though I did try). Fortunately, 11.5 hours of sleep did.

Odd Encounter of the Week #1: butt whoopin'

I never fight. Except for one time when a friend slept over. He kept putting his pillow in my face, proclaiming himself to be "Pillow Man" as I tried to go to sleep. I was tired and he was annoying, so I punched the pillow. A pillow does not bleed, but aparently the man behind it does. My friend's nose turned the pillow red. Initially I was scared - that I would get in trouble or that he would hate me. Neither happened. Thus, this is now considered one of the greatest moments of my life. I made someone bleed [insert uber-masculine roar here].

Besides that instance, I never fight. I retired 1-0, 1 TKO.

On Monday, someone tried to goad me into a fight. Apparently, they had not heard of what I had done to Pillow Man.

Nate and I decide to go to a neighborhood basketball court to shoot some hoops. The weather is beautiful, and he has a half-day off. We pull up to the court where a couple of fellas are already shooting. Nicholas and Matthew, their names turned out to be. Their sister is taking a tennis lesson at the adjacent court, so they are just "chillin," as the kids are saying these days.

Nate and I begin to shoot, hoping this would either a) make them leave so we could have more room or b) entice them to play 2-on-2. Nate and I have great chemistry and thus brim with confidence. Something just tells us we can take them, given the chance.

Our court tenants choose option c) start shooting with our ball without asking. Ok, no biggie. We are big kids; we can share. So we shoot with them for a while. Then Matthew leaves.

Nicholas, on the other hand, starts to guard me. He tries to steal the ball. I dribble away. He continues at this for a while, half-heartedly playing defense while Nate and I easily move around him and shoot. Kind of annoying but, again, no biggie. We are big kids; we can joke around.

A few minutes later, he decides it would be great to throw the ball, my ball, in a near-by mud puddle. I see him grab a rebound, look at me and smile, then move towards the soggy dirt. Oh no, I think, as I quickly hustle to fence the mud. Nicholas begins to laugh. Apparently he enjoys this. Not wanting to risk my perfect fighting record, I force a smile, but inside I'm muttering, "Damnit man, gimme my ball. We can't play with a muddy ball. Grow up."

Nicholas wins the game. He slams the ball in the mud right at my feet. The ball gets muddy. I get muddy. Gaining possession of my ball, we return to the court.

Nate thinks this is hilarious. Of course he does. It's not his ball.

We keep shooting. Nicholas proceeds to engage me in conversation. He takes tai-kwan-do, he says. Has since he was three. As evidence, he slugs me on the back.

Thump.

I fake another smile. I see you take tai-kwan-do. Great self-esteem builder, I hear. Nice.

He rears back to enter Exhibit B, but I brace myself, twisting out of the way. He responds, tossing a kick in the direction of my right shin. He misses. Barely.

Ok, man, I get it. You can and like to fight. Let's go back to shooting.

Nicholas's smile comes back. He coils up for another slug to the back. I turn again. This time he jerks his knee towards the area of my crotch. Recognizing the move, I cover up but take a glancing blow from his fist off my back.

Nate thinks this is hilarious. Of course, he does. It's not his balls.

At this point, I do not fake a smile. My ball is muddy, and I'm starting to get my ass kicked.

Needing to nip this in the bud before Nicholas evens my record at 1-1, 1 TKO, I put serious face on and start, "Hey, man, look, this. . . ."

"Nicholas, honey, it's time to go!"

"Coming, Mom!"

Nicholas's sister had finished her lesson. It was time for him to go home. The seven-year old hopped in his Hummer Big Wheels and drove away, Mom, sister, brother, and dog in tow. I go back to shooting, muddy and embarrassed.

But still undefeated.

5 comments:

Chris Pappa said...

I woulda slugged the little pot-licker.

Jenn Pappa said...

i'd have put him in a microwave

what a jerk-for-a-kid

you should take up tai-kwon-do though.. it's good for self esteem, i hear.

:-p

Jeff said...

no way i would have let that slide....
i say throw him in the mud puddle. run to the car. and drive off before mom sees.

Wilson said...

Yeah, after the attempted shot at my manhood, I think I would've punched the kid, then after the fact felt bad and worried what mommie would think of me punching her little baby. I applaud you for somewhat keeping your cool, although I was hoping the story ended with you getting a shot in that improved your record to 2-0.

Oakley said...

Ben, I applaud you for being a bigger man than I. I would have either
A) hidden his body
or
B) told his mother what a demonseed for a child that she raised.

I also award Jenn 10 points for her creative use of a microwave.