Tuesday, October 2, 2012

That escalated quickly.

Finally, season has officially begun! Season opening weekend started bright and early Saturday morning, but unfortunately for us, we would only be spectators until Sunday. Our entire Saturday was spent watching the other teams play, watching people shoot in the 3pt contest, and then watching other teams play again. Thrilling. Our league rules dictate that every team stays and watches every game. It’s silly and a bit ridiculous to enforce this, but enforce it they do so stay and watch we do. The banquet was that night and just like last year the best part of it was the food. There is just so much and it’s buffet style so I get real liberal with my portion construction. Otherwise it is just a lot of German pish posh for a couple hours. The real disappointment for the evening was Vlasti being robbed of the coach of the year award from last season. He is way too dignified to care about any award, but everyone in that room knew he deserved it.

Saturday was a lot of watching and sitting around—mildly put, it was dull. However, in the middle of my nagging boredom was the first round of the 3pt competition, and of course you remember I was participating. One player from each team shoots and the top four move onto the semis. Standard rules apply: each shooter gets one minute, 5 shots from the 5 spots, but instead of shooting balls from a ball rack, you get two balls and two teammates, one to pass one to rebound. I held a tryout before selecting my passer and rebounder. It was rigorous, I won’t lie and ultimately I picked Mort and Bri. It wasn’t easy, but they proved up to the challenge of chasing down potential bricks and passing me the ball in my shooting pocket. Having lost last year in this competition I am regrettably aware of how important those two things are to winning. Each shooter shot at the same time as another but that was simply for time saving purposes—you didn’t have to beat that person to advance. I decided I would anyways. I made 17 and moved onto the semis. We wouldn’t shoot again until Sunday afternoon, and this time it was head to head. I got paired against a girl from Osnabruck who had played Saturday, so she was visibly hung-over from celebrating the previous night. 
Seriously. All the teams that play Saturday party together that night then stagger into the gym Sunday to watch the remaining games. We keeps it classy. Anyways, I thanked her after beating her 14-7—hope it was worth it. The final was a few hours later, just before our game. Mort asked me if I wanted to know throughout the shooting if I was winning or losing and by how much. I decided I didn’t want to know since that wouldn’t really change anything—regardless I needed to make shots—but I did want to know how much time I had as I moved to each spot. This created some comedy. As I got to the last spot, I had no clue how many I had made or if I was winning and as I made my last shot I stopped and just turned to my teammates, almost unsure of what to do and waiting for some sort of gesture or clue as to the result. It felt like 3 long, full seconds passed before they started cheering as they swarmed me. I guess I won.

Winning was nice, I won’t lie, but you know what makes winning way better? Prizes! And it turns out the 3pt champ got a prize! It was the best kind of prize there is too—a cash prize. I won 300$ for making 16 shots. They literally handed me an envelope with the cash inside. Sorry I’m not sorry. This money actually comes at an auspicious time since I recently got my speeding ticket from the famous Chemnitz road-trip. Allegedly, I was driving 160 in a 100 speed zone. First of all, no. That is flat out wrong. There is no way I was only going 160. As you can imagine I got a hefty fine, and my license is suspended for a month. That’s rich. I don’t want to hear any “oh my gosh” or “holy cow” nonsense. Must I remind you I was driving on the autobahn, not in some school zone—there is no speed limit, mostly. If you are gonna have a highway without limits, don’t be surprised when people are driving really fast. Needless to say, the prize money will come in handy.

 It had already been a long weekend but finally it was time for us to warm-up and play. Our game began shortly after the 3pt final around 4:30 on Sunday. We started off a little slow but once we shook the cobwebs off it was a pretty good game for us. At half we were only up 6, but the next time I looked at the scoreboard we were up 30. That escalated quickly. We played one of the two teams that moved up from Div2 last season to replace the two teams that moved down—one of which was Chemnitz. We played good defense and ran their butts off that second half and won 83-60. Everyone contributed which made the game really fun. I had 11 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists and couldn’t hit a single 3. How fitting.

Minus all the waiting around, Saturday was actually really fun. Sidney and Mary (teammates from Chemnitz) drove out with Raoul and Ralf (coach and trainer from Chemnitz) so I got to hang out and catch up with them which I loved. There were actually a lot of former Chemnitz players at season opening, some playing and some not. Judith is now with Freiberg, Tina is with Halle (HOLLLLLLA), Sam is with Rotenburg and I am with Wolf obviously. It was great to see everyone again doing well.

So I am backtracking here, but I am sure you can manage. Friday night after practice, a group of us drove to Braunschweig for dinner. We heard about this sushi place, this all you can eat sushi place and we were intrigued. No one ever needs to eat "all you can" but there is something about that label that entices us, isn't there? Ichiban was the name of the restaurant and boy oh boy did we enjoy this place. First of all, you order from an ipad. I hadn't even eaten yet and I was somehow satisfied. Here is how the place worked: you spend 20$ for all you can eat sushi as well as the hot food, like teriyaki chicken, noodles, fried rice etc. They had it all. We could order 20 items at a time but before you could get more you had to finish your first order. No problem. I am still disgusted when I recall how much we ate, how much I ate, but I didn't spend 20$ to fool around with no salad or a roll. That's not my style. I like to make those places second guess their profit margins when I eat, cause I absolutely leave on the winning end of that scale. 

We play at home this weekend against Rotenburg who picked up a new player since we last played them and it happens to be one of my teammates from last season, Sam. They lost their game at season opener in a close one to Freiberg. Evidently the link I posted for watching games didn't quite work so I will try to figure that out and update the link next time. Happy October friends!


  1. If you were driving over/near/at 160 mph then they were right to take your license away! Have some pity on your friends and family who don't want to lose you. Sheesh.

    Congrats on the 3pt contest! I wish I had been there to see your surprise. Remember Magic Mountain?

    I also wish I had been there to see you gorging yourself at the sushi place...ha ha!

    Miss you!

  2. 160km is only 99.4 MPH. Falling short of perfection again.

    Annnnnnnnd I'm officially caught up. That was fun!

  3. Ugh, I know. But like I said, I was going much faster Eric. Glad you are caught up. I have missed your comments. I was starting to think you had become tired of me...