The playoffs are long and I am, on occasion, busy. But don't despair: We got you covered. I'd like to unveil a new feature of this blog: My Drunk Girlfriend Watching Basketball. My very sweet girlfriend offered to cover the games tonight for me while I did a radio show. Elizabeth is really smart and funny, but she has not watched more than a few incidental seconds of an NBA game before. This will be fun.
9:30 GUYS. It's a basketball game. Chicago-Cleveland game number... one? It's their first match-up, right? The playoffs just only started, so this seems like it's probably a safe assumption to make [Ed. note: Nope.]. I am excited enough about this, because the Bulls are a team I have heard of. In fact, I have not only heard of them, but I have heard of them for years. Thanks, Michael Jordan, for being so famous that even the sports-phobic child of parents who have probably never watched an entire non-college game of any sport in their long lives knew about you and your team as a child. I won't pretend that this isn't like 97% due to Space Jam.
I'm starting my report a little late, because I was off enjoying some box wine and got distracted, BUT it looks like I came into the Chicago-Cleveland game just in time. It's the third... quarter? (Third? I thought this was only in halves? Though I am aware that something can contain both halves and quarters) and my new favorite player from the Bulls (read: the only one I've noticed yet), just put the ball in the hoop at a short distance and made it so the Bulls were not losing anymore. They said his name but I was so caught up in the moment that I did not hear it, so I think I'm going to call him Patches, in honor of the fact that he is less talented at growing facial hair than he is at basketball stuff (I'm not judging, because I'm equally unskilled at both). So, way to go, Patches. He's wearing the number 13, so I suppose I could find out his name, but my absolute ignorance of what's going on is what makes this game so mysterious and exciting to me [Ed. note: It's Joachim Noah. He gets that oil.].
9:35 OK, bad news for Patches: Cleveland scored while I was lost in his dull, lifeless eyes, and I think he just got shoved by... Shaq? I wasn't aware Shaq was still playing. Isn't he like a million years old? Also, more important things have come up: I am pretty sure someone from the Addams family grew up to join Cleveland, because they just played the theme song. Maybe the guy with the luscious hair? In other "musical" news: someone, somewhere keeps starting the "We Will Rock You" clap, but no one you can see on TV is even moving. Who is even doing that? Y'ALL: no one can see you doing that. You can cancel the "wave", too, if that was in order.
9:42 Also: Lebron is on one of these teams? This raises the number of players I've heard of to two. I feel torn now, because I think I like him and I think he's also with the Cavaliers, who I was less excited about just because I only have recently become aware of their existence. The only thing going for the Bulls right now is Patches, and it appears that Cleveland has its own Patches. Number 17? [Ed. note: Anderson Varejao] I need a close up to see if he'll suffice as my Cleveland Patches should I decide to cheer for them.
9:51 The score is still close, 77-76, Chicago. I just noticed that Cleveland has a terrifying bald giant who can't even put the ball in the hoop even though he pretty much has to bend over at the waist to touch the hoop [Ed. note: Zydrunas Ilgauskas]. Too low for you, buddy? He's doing some free throws and I just realized: he doesn't have any armpit hair. It's official: he will haunt my nightmares forever.
9:56 OK, it is quarters, and we're entering the fourth. 77-77! A tie! This could go either way, and I do mean either way, since I have no idea what is going on. As far as I can tell, they are pretty evenly matched, if not in ability, in their love for slowly scoring points one by one then letting the other team score a few before resuming their own scoring.
9:58 What is up with this music? I can't tell whether this is something only for TV or if it's also playing in the arena or what. It's really clear and tinny and seemingly disconnected from everything else going on in the arena. Like, did Shaq just hear that "Mario growing bigger" noise that sounded when someone made a free throw, or was that just to let people like me know that, yes, the score is growing bigger? I like to imagine that this isn't planned at all, but that one of the commentators got a new cellphone and is just hanging out behind that table trying out all of the ringtones while his colleagues are doing their jobs. "Listen, guys, 'La Cucharacha!'"
10:04 I think I like Cleveland more and more, and not just because they are winning. One of their players has been making pretty much every jump a freak-show jumping jack. Everyone else on the court: tense posture, eyes on the ball. This guy: loose as hell and doing aerial toe-touches. [Ed. note: I have no clue who this is.]
10:08 The commentators just said that they're seeing fantastic defense at both ends, but I'm pretty sure I just saw Patches straight up miss two shots in a row. Unless Cleveland's defense involves some sort of dark magic that shifts the hoop imperceptibly when people are trying to get the ball in it [Ed. note: Incidentally, that actually is my theory], I don't know if that was the best-timed compliment. I get that the other guys on the team are doing stuff I don't even understand, like blocking his view or keeping him from getting in a good place or just scaring him or something, but as far as I could tell, everyone was just kind of standing back and watching, like, "There goes old Patches, doing whatever it is he does." [Ed. note: I don't know how much clearer I can be: Joachim Noah gets that oil.]
10:14 Two free throws for Patches. It's too late for me and him, though I will admit that his look-alike playing for Cleveland is no match. Actually, it's not even Patches this guy reminds me of by this point: I think I just found out what happened to Justin Guarini after From Justin to Kelly.
10:24 Ten point difference. Now the people in view of the camera are moving... all waving their handkerchiefs, or something suspiciously handkerchief-like. What is this? Are basketball fans the last people to resist Kleenex? Like, to resist it for so many years? I realize I should start talking about what's going on, but I am just so confused by every single thing that's happening that I can't really focus on the important confusing things. [Ed. note: God, how drunk were you?]
10:32 Confession: prior to watching this game, I drank about four or five glasses of wine [Ed. note: Oh.]. Over the course of this game, I surrounded myself and my writing station with more and more pillows. Over the course of the last few minutes of the game, I (kinda accidentally) laid down and (also accidentally) closed my eyes and fell asleep for a few minutes and started to dream I was locked in a terrifying cellar made of dirt and roots guarded by Patches and that terrifying bald giant. Good news: I wasn't, and my first sight upon waking was the reassuring sight of Lebron James being interviewed. That felt good and he was wearing a nice towel on his neck. Bad news: I missed the end of the game. But apparently no one scored, so that's OK, right? Right?
That's it. Shaq? Didn't do as much as I would expect from one of the four or five basketball players whose name I knew before about six months ago, but then again, the man's kind of old. And Lebron scored 40 points, but I think I might have been boozin' and typing every time he had the ball. Oops. He looks good with a towel on his neck, though.
Oh man, I am terrible at this.
Right now the Denver-Utah game is on and I can't even watch. Denver and Utah: I'll give y'all another chance later, even though you have the dumbest names ever, and for some reason, the arena where you are playing has a giant sign that says, "AMAZING IS BELIEF." (I'm not sure what that means. I'm really not sure if that's even English.) For tonight, though, I'm done. If Kellen's predictions are to be believed, that means one game down, one and a half to go before I give up on the playoffs forever. We'll see if that's true, and more importantly, we'll see how much longer I can blog about basketball before Kellen becomes totally disillusioned and dumps me. Goodnight, everyone. Basketball is magic.
Wonderful. Did you guys like that? I liked that. This should be a regular feature, right? I think so. Post your encouragement in the comments.