It's ironic that after this event, I now go to Butler University, home to some of the best college basketball players in the nation.
You see, there's a reason I stuck to cheerleading throughout high school.
There's a reason I'm here at this school on academic scholarship & not athletic.
& that reason is, I was always kinda awkward out there.
I was the most overweight one on every team so I lacked any self confidence at all.
All the way up to 7th grade, my dad sat at the score table on the volleyball court telling me it was all going to be okay because I was a nervous wreck.
& I guess this event could have had something to do with it.
I was in 5th grade, playing basketball for my elementary school team, coached by a teacher who hadn't yet had any kids & was no fan of mine.
She was the opposite of understanding.
I never knew where I was supposed to be on the court and I couldn't run very fast. Well, I think I could, I just didn't think I could then, so I didn't.
So anyway, it was a game night and we were playing at a small Lutheran school near by.
I remember exactly what the gym looked like. It didn't even have bleachers, only chairs laid out for the parents.
Mid game, I was put in. She had to put me in sometime, that was the rule of 5th grade athletics.
Finally, I did the unthinkable. I rebounded that ball right out of the air and took off dribbling down the court.
No one was even following me! I must have been running fast.
I quickly made it to the basket, threw it up & it went in! I waited for the cheers, but they never came.
When I finally realized that I had dribbled the ball all the way down the court to the other teams basket, shot, made the goal & won the game for the other team, I looked over for comfort from my mom.
Only there was none.
Her face was in her hands, nearly dying of embarrassment.
& like any good man, the opposing team's coach told mine that we could take that point off, no big deal.
"No", she said, "We need to teach her a lesson".
& I learned it.
Never, ever, would I play basketball competitively again.
Instead, I traded basketball shorts for a cheerleading uniform & I'm so glad I did.