I was a pretty good athlete when I was young. I spent a lot of time at the park playing baseball and basketball. They named the park after Jeff. He was a great guy in the neighborhood who died in a car accident in the mid 70’s. He was always at the basketball court willing to play one on one or get a game of half court going. Shooting basketball I could be alone practicing my sky hook or slam dunk. I was pretty good for a white kid. I just couldn’t dribble worth a crap and had to learn to pass the ball off quick. I noticed how calm and quiet it was that day. Usually there’s a lot of traffic going past. This time no one even walked up to the court. I shot the ball towards the basket then walked over to the bench. The ball hit the backboard and came to a complete stop as it landed. Pulling out a cigarette from the pack in my sock, I sat and looked at the ball. It was a leather, red, white and blue basketball. As a sports card collector I was proud to have the same thing the pro’s used at the time.
A slight breeze blew, just enough to make the leaves rustle on the trees. My basketball started rolling slowly to the center of the court. It took an abrupt sharp turn and came directly at me. The ball was rolling at the same speed the entire time. It dropped off the asphalt court and rested at the edge in front of me. Jeff was back, he wanted to play a little one on one.