Daniel’s big present from Meka and me was a portable basketball hoop, complete with stand and pole. Daniel loves to play basketball and he’s been shooting hoops since we set up his first Little Tikes set when he was a toddler. Up until a couple of years ago, we used to set out the six foot net out on the driveway and shoot baskets in the evenings. It was actually more of a challenge than you’d think. The basket was designed for something about the size of a softball; the real basketball we were using barely fit through the hoop. It was time we moved up.
Like most things in this world, the net came in pieces with nearly unintelligible instructions. I dragged the large cardboard box onto the driveway. Daniel brought out my tool box. He brought his tool set as well, just in case. This turned out to be fortuitous for the instructions did mention we needed a hammer, several screwdrivers, half a dozen different sized ratchets and an adjustable wrench. They didn’t make it clear we’d need them all at the same time.
My original intention was to have Daniel “help” me, but the quotes came off that help real quick. For example, he held the backboard in place, balanced on the rim edge while I quickly jammed bolts through the holes from the bottom and tried to attach the nuts before they fell through. We worked through the afternoon in the 95 degree heat. The sun beat down on the blacktop of the driveway and roasted us from above and below. I think the matte black finish of the hoop and pole left griddle marks on the palms of my hands. But we finally finished it. We filled the base with water and stood it up, tall and straight.
And then we went in. We were too tired to shoot any baskets.