Well, it shows you should be careful what you wish for... I said I wanted us to have more fun and guess what, we did. We played the Colwyn Bay Bulls, led right through the game and played some great fast paced flowing basketball along the way... until we got to the last few minutes, realised we were going to win and tried to run our offences... we lost by two baskets.
Even so it was so much fun to be playing well as a team. Even training last night was fun. It was as though it had never occurred to us we could play fast run-and-gun basketball until now and everyone was getting in on the act. I think much of the difference owed to the return from injury of point guard Sam for the game and Danny from the Raiders at training, but everyone else raised their game around them.
(If I don't mention Rob and Max's legendary blocks, I'll never hear the end of it:)
I felt bad for one of the Bulls' players. We went for the same ball early on, I'd caught him in the nose and was pretty disgusted to realise I'd ended up with a huge wet bogey on my finger! I went to take the lineout ball and surreptitiously wiped it onto the wall of the gym behind me to get rid of it... that's not the full story though...
Afterwards I saw the guy tending to himself in the mirror of the locker rooms, and discovered I had actually caught him in the neck and that thing I had wiped onto the wall of the gym was actually a lump of skin and flesh. Obviously I apologised, but I wonder if I should have told him where I had left that bit of his neck so he could have retrieved it!
One of my friends bought me a great basketball film called Crossover for Christmas. Watching it took me right back to being 11 or 12 and watching Michael Jordan videos for the first time.
It’s that childlike enthusiasm that best fuels the long hours spent in persuit of our dreams, but as we get older we look around and realise that the vast majority of us are not going to achieve what we set out to, and will have to find our own way of coming to terms with this.
“There is a tide in the affairs of men," wrote Shakespeare, "which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries.” (I once heard the line and it has nagged at the back of my mind ever since whenever I think about skipping a session :)
It's all about taking the opportunities put before you and we all know he’s right, though ironically it’s something we probably only realise when the key chances of our lives have almost passed.
Even so, "a life bound in shallows and in miseries" sounds a bit harsh. When I think back to running races on the track, just one person can win, but does that make meaningless the tremendous journey the other competitiors followed to reach that point? Even for the one who wins, there will always be one more thing in their career they could have achieved.
I wonder then, if it’s not always about the big picture, but actually about the moments, and that when we come to add these together, our lives will have been more meaningful than we could possibly have imagined.