When March rolls around, a craziness takes over the Parker house and the family television set.
It’s basketball and March Madness.
Debbie and I both enjoy and love the game. To be truthful, I think Debbie loves it a little bit more than I do, even though I can be up pacing around in the living room during a game.
She analysis the games, serves as a referee, calls missed fouls and comments on the players, coaches and fans. She is in tune with the action!
If I am at work or running an errand and ask for an update on a game Debbie is watching, I not only get the score, I get the play-by-play breakdown and detailed explanation of what is going in the game. And she takes the time to type it and send it in a text.
It starts in November with high school and college basketball, especially Iowa, Iowa State, OU and Missouri, my alum mater, and it gets more intense as the weeks roll along.
And last year, we got to add in five trips to Wells Fargo to watch the Montezuma girls’ and boys’ play in their respective state tournaments. And I got to be on the sidelines with my camera covering all the games and capturing the intensity of it all. That was one of the highlights of my journalistic career.
Beside basketball, I have to throw in college softball. We are both huge OU Sooner softball fans. They are fun to watch. Unfortunately, for some crazy unknown reason, the Sooners are only on television this spring for a handful of games. The number one team in the nation and 2021 National Champs and they are not on television. Whoever is in control of scheduling games for television needs their head examined.
I didn’t play sports in school outside of my ninth grade year when I ran the mile for the Wilson Rebels. That’s a mascot name you might expect in the early 1970s at an Oklahoma junior high school.
Anyway, my most memorable race was at a neighboring high school. There were five of us in the race – three ninth graders and two seventh grades. My mom was in the stands, which was a big morale booster for me.
I laced up my Puma track shoes and put it into high gear on the old cinder track. I ran study in second place in my class until the last lap when I got passed. It didn’t stop me from kicking it into gear to finish the race. I was so proud of earning a third-place ribbon. In my mind, I all but won that race.
I didn’t play football but did go out during spring drills in the tenth-grade to play my eleventh-grade year. At that time, Oklahoma high schools had spring drills.
My good buddy, David, and I walked into the room and some of the players laughed. We didn’t care, we were there to play ball.
Unfortunately, it didn’t work out for both of us. I was big, but not coordinated enough for the game. I tried my best to run the drills but was having a tough time. I kept falling down and the coaching staff sent me home to find another choice of activity.
I also went out for basketball in the eighth grade but didn’t make the team.
Debbie played softball and pitched for the Bravettes in junior high. She tells the story of the time she was playing in a tournament for the now late Coach Denny Johnston.
She hit the ball and took off for first base and was not going to be denied. The first baseman was blocking the bag and Debbie collided with her and ended up with a bloody nose, elbows and knees.
“They took me out of the game and the person they put in my place went on to score and help win the game for Montezuma,” Debbie said.
I hope we don’t have any bloody incidents watching a basketball game while yelling at the television. Well, at least it is fun!
Have a great week and always remember that “Good Things are Happening,” every day and always.