Yesterday, a memorandum banning a guy from his church basketball league was submitted as a photo to PGP. You can see that here. In response, the guy, who shall remain anonymous, sent an email to our support staff asking how we obtained the letter. After a brief and cordial email conversation, he agreed to give us a rundown of the events leading up to his lifelong suspension…
“I was a pretty decent basketball player back in my teens. Good enough to play high school ball, but not good enough to play college ball. I was your typical white player, hustling, diving on the floor, taking charges, and grabbing offensive rebounds (picture a shorter, less athletic version of Mark Madsen). My skill set was good enough to excel in intramural basketball. I went to college, joined a frat, and naturally joined our intramural team. We won the Greek league three of the four years I was in college and finished second in the university one year, which is a pretty strong accomplishment for a team full of alcoholics. I thought I would never lose my basketball skills…until postgrad life happened.
I took a desk job after college. Fast forward 5 years… I added about 40 pounds to my frame, lost about 5 steps and could no longer touch the rim. A few of my former intramural teammates thought it would be a good idea to get us back together and try and get back in shape a little bit and see if we still “had it.” I for one knew that I did not “have it.”
We signed up for a local church league. Our team name was the Post Grad Heroes. One of the very strict rules at this church was no cussing. This point was emphasized many times to us. I thought I was pretty decent with my mouth, but apparently that is not the case. The Post Grad Heroes quickly became known as the out of shape white guys, who had some skills, but had big mouths.
One referee in particular hated us, but more specifically, he hated me. This guy thought the church league was the NBA playoffs with how tight he was calling the games. I had a loud demoralizing voice, and worse, I was very animated when disagreeing with a call. I used to referee basketball and felt I knew more than this referee, but apparently I had lost the ability to be able to talk to referees. Well, I think a season of dealing with the Post Grad Heroes did him in. We had to win one of the final two games to make the playoffs versus the two best teams in the league.
Second to last game of the season, the game is tight (4 point game) with about three minutes to go. We get a much needed stop on defense and we are on the break. The ball is passed to me, I do a post move that I had done thousands of times and get called for traveling. I did not travel, and therefore, I am pissed. I walk with the ball to the three-point line, set the ball down to make the referee have to walk to get it, and he then blows his whistle and calls a delay of game on me. Me being a smart ass, I walk to the scorer’s table and report myself for the delay of game. My teammates are trying to calm me down, and I tell them that I’m not going to calm down because he’s making bull crap calls! (Whistle blows). Technical Foul. “Bull crap” is considered a cuss word at the church. After the technical, I was pulled from the game. I was done, the Post Grad Heroes were done. We ended up losing that game and needed to win the final game
The next Tuesday comes, and we had been encouraging each other over email all week trying to pump ourselves up to win our final ball game. We arrive at the church, go to the big gym, and say a prayer before the game starts. We head over to our gym and guess who is about to referee our game? The anti-Post Grad Heroes referee. You could see the look in his face when he saw our team. He had the “I’m about to fuck you” look — the same look that Tim Duncan gets from Joey Crawford when he refs a Spurs game. I think to myself, maybe he doesn’t remember you. Oh, how wrong I was. 30 seconds into the game the referee calls a foul against us. We line up on the lane and I’m on the bottom block. The referee emphasizes to wait for the ball to hit the rim, and playing basketball all my life, this shouldn’t be a problem. The player shoots and airballs the freethrow. I step into the lane. Everyone starts to head down the floor as the referee blows the whistle. He sends everyone back and calls a lane violation on me for stepping in too early. Look, I didn’t step in too early, so I go ballistic. I have now have turned into a hot head and try to refrain from cussing. I instead decide to ask the referee if he was high and if he had been smoking crack. I didn’t know this was frowned upon in the church league. Whistle blows. Technical foul. Now I’m really pissed. This guy came to the gym with complete intentions to throw out an innocent, 27 -year-old, out of shape ball player. I walk around as they are shooting the technical freethrows and my team is telling me to calm down. I shout out, “Someone take my ass out.” (Whistle blows). Technical number 2. You can’t say ass in the church. I am tossed. I am done. The Post Grad Heroes have lost their center.
My temper is now at an all time high. I have to leave the gym to calm down. I go outside and look for my car. I needed a Gatorade to cool off. I rode with my roommate, so I am stuck at the gym. Fuck. So I decide to go sit in the big gym and wait for the game to finish. After doing that for about five minutes, I decide to head back into my game to sit in the stands and not say anything. That is impossible for me. The referee starts making ridiculous calls, and I pop off again. I think I said, “I’d watch my mouth if I were you because he’ll kick you out.” (Whistle blows). Third technical foul. I am kicked out of the gym for good. Still being unable to leave without a car, I debate calling a cab. Instead, I decide to watch through a tiny window in the hallway. One of my teammates said the referee said, “I can see you over there, you little shit.” Complete double standard, which is bullshit. The Post Grad Heroes ended up losing that game in overtime and missed the playoffs. The six free points I gave them on technical fouls cost us the spot. I led the league in technical foul by about four techs, but I felt pretty good about it. Season was over, or so I thought.
I sent out an email a couple of days later apologizing to my team for acting like such a jackass and costing us the playoffs. Our team captain emails us back later that day saying he received an email from the church saying that we have a player that was banned from the league next year, and he sent us this infamous flyer that was sent to all staff. I knew I was going to Hell, but this really escalated my descent.”
-Anonymous Church League Baller