In 2009 one of my favourite writers, Chuck Klosterman, wrote an interesting article about President Barack Obama, university basketball, and if one can tell what a person is like from the way they play basketball. It got me thinking about what I am like when I play and if it speaks to who I am. Playing on Monday night in the summer of 2008 caught me at my lowest, I had invested a lot of my time and thoughts about what my life was going to be life connected to this woman. When that relationship ended I felt so unsure about who I was, where I was going, and what I wanted. Basketball and playing was a place to start looking. Or at least a way to step away from everything.
I know that when I first moved to Toronto from Los Angeles in the late ‘80’s not many people played basketball at the school that I went too and it’s all I wanted to do. I ended up playing with people, organizing games, and sometimes sharing what knowledge I had at the age of 10/11 on how to play. I liked making a good pass and making my partner look good. I got frustrated and would sometimes do too much if my team and I were losing. I didn’t like losing. I got intimidated by bigger, better players. I liked talking on the court and cracked jokes. I got frustrated when I wasn’t playing well or when my teammates weren’t playing their best. I got REALLY frustrated when I wasn’t playing well. Have I mentioned I got frustrated when I didn’t play well?
Wait a minute. Why am I writing this like it’s in the past? This is how I am now. Almost 25 years later. So what does that say about me?
What would playing the game say about you?
I feel that playing with the guys in this collective I have learned a lot about them from the way they play basketball. In 7 years a lot has changed for all of us but that first summer we all met and subsequently each time we get together and play, the game teaches us a little bit more about who we are.
I am hoping that if you are reading this that you are curious about what playing the game says about you. And that you might be interested in seeing what playing the game said/says about us.
– Colin (Team Purple)