Stan Silliman is a
                  humorist-public speaker appearing on stage and at over
                  250 events.Stan is willing to go anywhere people want
                  to hear about the funny side of sports


Silliman on Sports
By Stan Silliman


My good friend, Marv Melsner, was a pretty fair small college ballplayer who prided himself on being in superior condition. He would like nothing better than to play basketball for pay year around. Heís not NBA capable, too short at 6í4Ē to play inside in a foreign league but he thinks heís fundamentally sound enough to compete in big arenas around the world. When he saw this chance to play 120 games a year he laced up his Adidas and ran to the hotel where they were interviewing for new Washington Generals. He recorded the interview for our readers:

Washington General Interviewer: Your name is Marv? Sit down, please. We want guys who love the game of basketball, love to hear it bounce and are willing to play in all conditions. It says here you averaged 16 ppg at Grinnell College. Are you passionate? Are you one of those guys?
Marv Melsner: I am, Sir. Iíd love nothing more than playing basketball every day of the year.

WGI: Thatís good. You could be playing in ten different countries next year, sometimes outdoors, concrete courts. You good with that?
MM: I get to play basketball and see the world? Why wouldnít I be?

WGI: Some guys canít take the grind. Some get a little depressed.
MM: Depressed? With fans paying good money to watch us play?

WGI: Thatís the thing, Marv. Not too many will be there to watch YOU play. When theyíre all rushing to get autographs after the game, donít take it too hard if no one asks for yours.
MM: The Generals donít get to sign any autographs?

WGI: I heard tell it happened once, but the rumor was never confirmed. How do you feel about getting de-panted a few times a game?
MM: De-panted? Like in the middle of the game, some Globetrotter pulling my pants down?

WGI: Yes, youíll be expected to wear hearts or little doggies on your underwear. Is that a problem?
MM: I guess so. Maybe I can wear Batman or Superman underwear.

WGI: No, we follow regulations. Itís either hearts or doggies. Plus you donít want the underwear looking weird when a bucket of water is thrown on it, do you?
MM: Water? I thought it was confetti.

WGI: No, confetti is for the fans. Youíll get water splashed on you, definitely. How good are you at blocking half court hook shots?
MM: Well, you wonít believe this but Iím actually pretty good. Iíve practiced blocking hook shots and was pretty successful at Grinnell.

WGI: Wrong answer. You will never block a half court hook shot. Understood? You will be allowed to play defense but only at certain times of the game. Is this a problem? Sometimes the ball will be hidden from you in the shirt behind your opponentís back. Is that a problem?
MM: You mean because it will be obvious the ball is stuck in the shirt and Iíll look like a fool hunting for the ball? Will my pants be on when Iím searching for the ball?

WGI: Yes, when they hide the ball, your pants will be on. Now, one more thing, how are you with losing?
Will it eat at you? Will it gnaw at your soul? Will you ever be sitting at a lonely coffee shop in Budapest whining about never winning a game?
MM: No, Iíve got energy. I get off on traveling the world. I get a thrill seeing the net splash. I donít need to win to appreciate I get to do something a lot of kids just dream about. Sign me up, Sir.

Be my friend at        

Silliman On Sports
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