Thursday, November 03, 2005

Selective Hypocrite Memory

The Mad House Madman drives down the lane with three seconds to go. He pulls up short. Look at how high he can get up in the air. Oh my god, is that a plane? Is that a helicopter? Why no, it’s the MHMM….The shot for the game is….GOOD!!!!! (The crowd roars)…

That’s the way I preferred to remember it. So when my best friend asked me to fill in for a missing teammate on Monday night I figured I still had that touch. It’s only been, what, twelve years since high school? I mean, I was on the Varsity team you know.

I learned a lot that night. Memories are better left unvisited because the truth can sometimes be ugly, not to mention embarrassing. Not only had I discovered that my stamina rivals that of a nursing home gomer, but I also discovered that I can’t shoot, and I don’t mean I can’t hit the shot, I mean I can’t SHOOT. I had actually forgotten the technique for shooting a basketball. I forgot the TECHNIQUE. Do you know what this means? In short, AIRBALL!!! Can you hear it? “AIRBALL…AIRBALL…AIRBALL…AIRBALL”. All in all, four of them “AIRBALLS”.

But it was deeper than that. It was the realization that no matter how late I stayed to stabilize a dying patient, or to comfort a grieving widow, there was one thing I surely wasn’t doing much of recently, exercising. Wasn’t exercising. Five minutes into the game I was huffing and puffing so hard you’d have thought I was trying to blow the house down.

What a hypocrite! Here I am telling these poor sixty and seventy year olds with multiple horrible disease processes that they need to exercise more and I can’t even last ten minutes. Me, barely 31. Shameful hypocrite!

Reality has set in. Three years of residency have taken their toll on my bronze greek god of a body and my youthful gorgeous exterior (Memory is selective). I can save the life of a man having a heart attack but I can’t hit a shot to save my own.

Somewhere, Micheal Jordan is quietly weeping.