Saturday, April 2, 2011

Uncle Sal and the Hopeful Hoopster (Episode 189)

Inside A Boy Named Sushi, Uncle Sal sat on his tatami across from Randy Osorio. "How've ya been, Randy?"

"I'm doing great!" Randy reached into his shirt pocket and removed a photo of a boy who looked about 15. "That's my sister's kid."

Uncle Sal removed his glasses from the pocket of his lime green guayabera shirt. He wished the guy would have had the decency to wait until some hot sake was on the table before bringing out the photo. "Which sister?"

"Loretta. Remember, she married Efrem Budal. The architect."

Uncle Sal glanced at the photo, then asked a passing waiter to bring some hot sake. Nothing like sushi and hot sake to precede a good afternoon nap.

"He's tall."

"Can you believe it? The kid has grown seven inches since Christmas. He's six-five now and he's probably not done growing. And you know what's the best part?"

Uncle Sal used chopsticks to pick up a gyoza that Randy had ordered and popped it into his mouth.

"Loretta wants me to practice basketball with him. It's been a while since high school, but I can still shoot the ball. And teach him how to get rebounds."

Uncle Sal chewed the gyoza. He remembered Randy's days as a power forward at the local high school, but didn't remember those days as anything noteworthy.

"I mean, just look at the kid. OK, he could stand to put on some muscle. But he's going to be bigger than almost every kid he plays against. If I teach him some good post moves, he could probably dominate those other kids. And then he might start getting some attention from colleges. Wouldn't that be great? My nephew playing big-time college ball?"

"Well, I don't know if he'll be interested in basketball. Or if he'll be any good. But he sure is a lanky Budal, Randy."

This episode featured:
Oscar Robertson Wilde as Uncle Sal
Simon "Spike" Krzyzewski as Randy
Jellybean Merengue as the tatami.

Tune in next week when Uncle Sal says, "The world is your oyster. It's too bad you're allergic to shellfish."

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