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Tuesday, May 6, 2003   |    Fiction

Prenatal Hoop Dreams

by Nick Jezarian

My God, look at the size of this kid’s feet. He’s gonna be a monster. What do you mean how can I tell? Just look at them. We have to get this kid into Pete Newell’s Big Man camp A.S.A.P. Pete Newell’s, he coaches all the best N.B.A. centers in the summer. Out in Hawaii. Oh, our boy will love Hawaii, just look at him.

Honey, honey, don’t worry, Pete Newell’s Big Man Camp accepts young people too. No, no, he’s not too young. You’re crazy. Not quite as crazy as when you thought I was going to really stab you with that steak knife. I know. You’re right, I did chase you around the house. Yes, I suppose I was relentless. But you spilled A-1 on yourself. I was kidding; I wasn’t really going to cut you like a steak. Oh, come on, I just said that.

Bygones, honey, bygones. Look at this kid. That’s my boy, you’re my boy! He can hear me just fine, he’s not deaf.

Hey, doc, you know LeBron James went straight to the pros from high school? Yeah, they’ve been recruiting him supposedly since he was in 7th or 8th grade. My boy? He’s gonna sign a deal in the next few weeks. I’m not crazy doc, and you should watch what comes out of your jaw box over there. I’m payin’ your bills remember.

Honey, look at the size of his head! He’s gonna be a seven-footer for sure. This will be wonderful. I have calls into Coach K, the Syracuse cue ball, what’s his name? Boeheim—that’s it, thanks Doc—and I put in a call to the N.B.A. to see what his chances are for the draft.

Nice spin, baby, yeah! That’s my motherfucking son. You’re right honey, I’ll watch my language, not in front of the lad. But you know he’s going to learn it traveling from city to city? He’s going to be a young millionaire. He might even sow some oats if you know what I mean. Ouch! O.K., we’ll teach him right from wrong sure.

His arms look long. Wonderful, wonderful. I wonder if I should look into West Coast schools for him too? Oh what am I talking about, let’s just convince him to go straight to the pros. He’s going to be huge with a capital U, UGE! You like that one, doc? I made it up myself. Be careful or I’ll make him dunk on your M.D. ass.

Honey, you say its just a sonogram but that’s my son. He’s gonna be a pro player. Oh, come now, I’m not being ridiculous. What? 5’5” Jewish kids can’t make the pros? So I married an anti-Semite? Oh, please, I wasn’t trying to stick a basketball in your private place for no reason honey? Yeah, I read that the earlier they start holding a ball, the better. In the crib, no, that would have been too late.

Hey, Doc, I bet you’ve never even seen a left hand like that? My son’s going to the N.B.A. U.C.L.A.! That’s where I’m sending him, the pros can wait. Honey, I’ll be right back, I’m going to call U.C.L.A. What? Security? Get your hands off me, Doc. DOC!

O.K., honey, I’ll see you at home, I have plans to make.

Nick Jezarian is clearly a superbly built creation resulting from the union of man, woman, and crustacean. Nick's crustacean heritage contributes to his being mostly belligerent, constantly angry, yet always amused. Considering Nick's criminal spelling and grammar habits, the fact that he is part of the Y.P.R. brain trust doesn't say much about the site. Josh and Geoff have driven Nick's writing to new levels as he sends his Guff to the staff in an elaborate binary code that can only be deciphered by the light of pixie dust. Nick is Y.P.R.'s resident hip-hop expert, as he owns three CDs and once stabbed 50 Cent. Nick's favorite word is "word."