I have always had a problem with games involving spherical objects. Soccer, ping-pong, tennis, volleyball, none of these ever worked out for me. Instead I ran, practiced karate and wrestled, and enjoyed almost every minute of it (running to cut weight for wrestling can only be so fun).
In Qatar I have overcome my dysfunction. I am in love with basketball. Playing on CMU’s women’s team, memories of how much I love team exertion are flooding back. There is a simple joy in passing to a teammate without quite checking top make sure she is there, because it is the joy of total trust. This trust also allows me to relax physically around my team: as someone who is rarely touchy-feely, but who like all humans needs touch, this is a blessing.
Today, on the way to a rehearsal before a practice, I dribbled my practice ball out of my dorm, down the sidewalk, through two parking-lots, down an embankment, and to the courtyard of the middle school where I am rehearsing “Oliver!“. Watching me juggle my ball and my script as I walked to the auditorium, my director asked if I had a new friend.
I think I do.
“When we get out of the glass bottle of our ego and when we escape like the squirrels in the cage of our personality and get into the forest again, we shall shiver with cold and fright. But things will happen to us so that we don’t know ourselves. Cool, unlying life will rush in.” – D. H. Lawrence