Mary and Me

[dropcap]I[/dropcap] took my wife’s mother fishing yesterday. Just outside Panacea, Florida. We had a marvelous time. We even wore matching shirts and drank matching iced teas. With matching sprigs of mint. While we fished, Miss Mary took the opportunity to tell me a few stories.

“When I was a girl,” Mary explained. “The high school in Brewton would host a boy’s basketball tournament. It was wonderful. Every year, boys came from all over. They practically filled up our town. Each direction you looked: boys, boys, and more boys.”

She paused.

“Mary?” I asked. “Everything okay?”

“Yes, fine. What was I saying again?”


“Oh yes, that’s right. So many good-looking boys.”

“You already said that part.”

“Well,” she went on. “Mother and Daddy would let the basketball players stay at our house. They slept upstairs.” Mary flashed a little grin. “For a teenage girl like me, it was Christmas. I’d come down to breakfast every morning and see six boys at the table, waiting for me. All my girlfriends were jealous.”

“Oh my.” She let out a sigh. “We’d play badminton in the backyard. Girls against boys. Heavens, those young men were such fine athletes. So strong. Such broad shoulders.”

“Alright,” I interrupted. “Can we do a different story?”

She closed her eyes and leaned back into her chair. “Back then, basketball shorts weren’t as big and baggy as they are today.”

“Miss Mary, what do you say we to listen to the radio?”

“Those basketball shorts were so short.”

“Okay, I really think… ”

“And so very tight-fitting.”