It’s been a long winter here in New England. Recent storms have buried us, and another’s on the way. We try to take it in stride, but things can get testy, chippy, you know what I mean?
Take tonight’s Exeter-Andover boys’ basketball game. Maybe not such a good idea to put amped, overworked, overstressed teenagers from rival schools into a big, sweaty gym as a huge storm — and a full moon — approach. Rival fans taunted each other, close to the court, nose to nose in the stands. Cooler heads prevailed, but there was some bad energy in the place, and it made me more than a little edgy. It made me flash back to my youth, when things like this used to get “settled” out in the parking lot or at the dance.
But really, it wasn’t much different than being at home. Every day, our boys need about 43 hours outside to burn off enough energy to fall asleep quickly at night. It’s just not happening in the dead of winter, but finally, as if by sudden revelation, the answer presented itself: big inflatable punching and kicking dummy!!!
OMG, we love this thing. Best…winter…acquisition… ever. Perhaps one should be standard issue in the dorms at Exeter and Andover. In any case, it’s going to tide us over until that glorious day, six to eight months from now, when New England’s outdoor baseball season begins and promptly ends three-and-a-half weeks later.
Update: do not repeatedly tackle the inflatable punching and kicking dummy, as young boys will inevitably do, immediately after being warned a kajillion times not to. Said dummy will start to lose air. Unlike “Happy Fun Ball,” however, he can endure quite a bit of taunting!!