Adventures with the Screaming Eagles
by William Snyder
© 2015 William Snyder
The East Side Gym was a downright disgrace. Hundreds of students crowded into the building during school breaks, leaving cigarette butts, chewing tobacco, spilled soda, and soft candy squished and scattered across the badly warped wooden floor. There were dozens of holes in the roof. When it rained, and it rained a lot that year, more than twenty buckets had to be strategically placed from one end of the court to the other.
I talked to the maintenance guy, a man who worked to avoid doing any work harder than anyone I’d ever known, about fixing the roof.
“Can’t do it,” he told me.
“Why’s that, Brian?”
“It was built wrong.”
“The gym was built wrong?”
“And that’s why the roof leaks?”
“That’s right, Bill.”
“And you’re not going to fix any of the holes in the roof?”
“Someone could get hurt.”
“Want some advice, Bill?”
“Why not, Brian?”
“December, January, and February are excellent months to schedule away games,” he said, checking his watch.
“January, February, and March? That’s the whole basketball season.”
“Sure is, Bill.”