Shea Serrano took his twin 6-year-old sons to a week of basketball camp. This is what transpired.
Each Summer, I enroll the boys (“the boys” = my sons, not my testicles, though the transitive relationship among the sets does not escape me) in a basketball camp. It’s fun enough for them, and that’s neat, but mostly the reason I enjoy putting them in there is because, I mean, have you ever spent a summer with twin boys before? That s–t is horrendous. They’re everywhere, always. It’s like hanging out with Sonic the Hedgehog, except there are two of them, and rather than trying to collect rings they spend a good portion of their time trying to sneak punch you in the cock.
But anyway, the positive: The boys like basketball. We play it on screens (I bought an old XBOX from a guy on Twitter that turned out to be the assistant to Clutch, the Houston Rockets mascot, which is a job that I didn’t even know existed until I met him) and we play it in real life. (They play with some weak ass rules though. Like, they just start making things up if they’re losing. I got called for a violation once because I was “too big.”) And that’s dope. I’m glad we’re able to share that. I shared/share it with my dad, and they’ll (hopefully) be the same way.
But so the camp is a dual purpose thing then. It keeps their tiny brains happy during the long days of summer, and it allows me to rest my brain from being on steady Cockpunch Defense, which is an especially arduous and heavy effort (anyone that’s ever hung out with a group of drunk white guys knows). The camp is five days long. The boys went last week. I sat in the stands and took notes like a total creeper.
Monday, August 5, 2013 the year of our Lord
The last sport the boys played was soccer. A microcosm: Each game, Boy A tried to rip the femurs out of any legs dumb enough to exist near him. He is an especially competitive kid. Anytime he’s ever lost at something, he’s followed it with a gigantor-scream, wiped the tears from his face, then demanded a rematch. Boy B, by contrast, spent almost all of the second game of the season trying to give a Cheeto to a butterfly. That’s just how they live.
They were the same way today at basketball camp. A attempted to win EVERYTHING, and B walked around telling people that his new shoes made him faster than a puma. I guess technically he could’ve been telling the truth, but I don’t know. Really, I don’t even know what a puma is. I think it might be a made up animal. I’m not the king of pumas, bro.
The most exciting moment: During a rebounding exercise, Boy A was pitted against a tall, lanky (probably) 8-year-old. It seemed like an automatic L for him. And at first it was. The bigger kid chased the ball with a proper swiftness after it caromed off the rim, simply out-quicking A. Their second going though, A did a flat-out Dennis Rodman dive and got there first. One of the instructors gave him a high five. A didn’t even smile. He’s a murderer.
Tuesday, August 6, 2013 the year of our Lord
Nothing doing today. They ran some sprints (infinity tears from A, infinity cheats from B), did some dribbling drills (A was mega-focused, B shouted “Daddy, look! Through my legs,” and then accidentally karate kicked a ball away from the boy next to him), then the goals were lowered and the kids had shootaround for the last 20 minutes. The most enjoyable part of the day was when one of the kids, an unlikable little fellow with a brass-y voice and red hair, threw the ball at the front of the rim as hard as he could and it bounced back and hit a separate boy with a semi-charming gap in his teeth in the face. It was like he’d been hit in the forehead with the blast from a bazooka. He took that shit like a champ though. He got knocked back 40 feet, took a second, stood up, shook his head, then went on about his business. He probably had a concussion. Who knows? I don’t know. I didn’t ask. I just marveled. If I get a cramp, that’s the end of basketball for a month for me. Respect, Gap Tooth Boy.
Wednesday, August 7, 2013 the year of our Lord
–DNP, Daddy’s Decision–
The YMCA where the camp takes place is also home to a very nice, very large swimming pool. We went swimming instead. I pretended to be a shark and the boys pretended to be divers and I chased them and they giggled, just like Phil Jackson used to do with Shaq and Kobe.
Thursday, August 8, 2013 the year of our Lord
Excitement: A 2-on-1 fast break drill.
Anytime the boys know they’re going to be doing anything similar to this sort of competition, they only go one of two ways: They’ll bundle up into themselves and just stand there and do nothing and I will do everything I can not to curse everyone out, or they will decide no force on earth or the heavens can defeat them and then turn into Bruce Lee + Incredible Hulk + Jean-Claude Van Damme. For the 2-on-1 drill, B decided on the latter. He sank back into a defensive stance, spied the two clumsy warriors attempting to ransack his hoop, then pounced. He jumped the passing lane right as one of the boys tried to pass it to the other. The ball bounced right off of the side of B’s head. He realized what happened and quickly shouted, “I DID IT!” and then ran to the back of the line. One of the boys picked up the ricochet, dribbled to the goal, and laid it in. No bucket in the history of basketball has ever been more hollow.
Friday, August 9, 2013 the year of our Lord
I’d anticipated some sort of grand ceremony for the last day of camp. Banners and cheerleaders and fans and movie stars in the stands. Maybe a 5-on-5 tournament with something at stake like a Georgetown scholarship or the legacy of family like in “Above the Rim.” Alas, there was nothing. In fact, two of the instructors never even bothered to show up. And the other instructors just threw their hands up. The kids ran around and dribbled and one of them spent a solid two minutes trying to kick the ball into the hoop (he never made it, never even got close despite my sincerest prayers) and a different one never even got off the bleachers. I guess they were just doing what kids do, and that’s fine for them, but it makes for some pretty unspectacular copy.