basketball diaries

This past weekend was girls’ weekend. If you’ve been hanging around here for a while you know that girls’ weekends are never normal, even for our standards.

Fortunately for you all, this one wasn’t either.

We had originally planned to go down to Williamsburg, VA, but that fell through. I was bummed to say the least, but Heather is pretty quick on her feet, and had a back-up practically before the disappointment surfaced.

Our new location was in Mahanoy City, PA. Otherwise known as, Smalltown, USA.

Everything in this town closed at 4:00 pm, except for the tattoo parlors and beer distributors. (I’m just now realizing what a bad combination that is.) It was like taking a time machine back to 1945 when people just let their 5-year-olds wander around town and go grab ice cream from the local creamery on a Friday night. Seriously. Like, I’m not making that up.

We went antique-ing on Friday, to the Yuengling Brewery on Saturday afternoon, and Emily finally bit the bullet and got her matching tattoo after we left the Brewery. (see, I told you the beer/tattoo thing was a bad combination. Well, maybe not in this particular instance.)

The real fun happened Saturday night, at home.

We were all sitting down watching a little bit of the tube after dinner when Em needed to go potty. Waddling along to the bathroom (her foot was swollen) she passed a basketball next to the stairwell and said, “Hey, where’d this basketball come from?”

I immediately looked to Heather for an explanation (surely she had seen it there before) but her face looked just as perplexed as mine felt. And that perplexity turned to fear in both of us once we looked to Emily who also was clueless (and not joking) as to how this basketball came into our lives. “Do you think someone broke in and is waiting to kill us all once we go to bed?” Heather spoke what we were all thinking. “Yeah, but who breaks into someones house and leaves a basketball?” Emily, ever the voice of reason. “It could be, like, his calling card or something. ‘The Basketball Killer strikes again!’ You just don’t know.” I said.

(I would like to pause here in the story for a moment to address a concern I believe you may have. I’m sure you’re wondering how we all jumped to the conclusion that there was someone in the house based on a basketball in the living room in Smalltown, USA. I’m going to cut to the chase – we pack so much crap in the car for girls’ weekend that there’s never any room left for brains, or logic, or critical thinking. It’s just how we do things, okay?)

“Well, I’m gonna go search the house.” I said “Em, you stay down here, you’ll be no good to us hobbling around. If we scream, run out to the car and start it and wait for us to come down.” and then I handed her my keys.

“There’s a sword under the couch.” Emily said “Take that with you.”

(It actually wasn’t a sword, it was a Kukri. But it was a weapon nonetheless.) (I’ll bet you want to know how I even know what a Kukri is. My hubby grew up in Pakistan, and apparently, they’re all the rage there. And we have a few as well.)

So there I was, wielding my sword, and Heather had a large fork, and we were all ready to find and stab to death our intruder.

Except that he wasn’t in the bedroom, or the spare room, or the other bedroom, or the bathroom, or the attic, and he wasn’t even in the super-scary-perfect-hiding-spot-for-a-murderer/rapist basement. Pretty anti-climatic, huh? Nothin’. Not a single thing. There’s not much more in life that will make you feel like more of an idiot than getting all prepped and ready for nothing.

Except maybe wielding a sword and a large kitchen fork while doing so.


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