It Was Different Then

It was a lot different in those days, the schools we played were all small, some extremely small.

Most didn’t have dressing rooms or showers, and if they did, the shower room was always cold, damp, and dingy, with no hot water. Most of the time we dressed in a classroom where maybe there were blinds to pull for a little privacy, maybe not.

The seventh graders practiced during lunch hour while the other students were sitting along the sidelines eating their lunch. It wasn’t uncommon for a loose ball to wind up in someone’s chili. After too many complained, that practice was abandoned and we began practicing after school like everyone else.

The gymnasiums were small and the out of bounds line was normally against the wall, at least on one side. Sometimes the balcony stood out over the floor so there were parts of the floor where you couldn’t shoot without hitting the upper floor.

Many gymnasiums had no room behind the goal, and often times the hot water pipes used for heating the building ran along the wall behind the goals. Leg burns were common and when going in for a lay-up, there was always the danger of running into the wall; often times head first resulting in a bloody knot on the head.

After a game, we would go out into a cold winter evening still dripping wet with sweat, and no one ever  got sick.

If we won the game, it was coach’s treat at Napoleon Tavern, cheeseburgers, French fries and a milkshake.

Gary has been a writer/photographer for over thirty years. Specializing in nature and landscape photography, as well as studying native cultures.

His travels have taken him to most of the United States, as well as Australia, Belize, Egypt and the Canary Islands.

He has studied the Mayan culture of Central America as well as the aborigines of Australia. Photography has given him the opportunity to observe life in various parts of the world.

He has published several books about his adventures.

For more information, please consult his website,

Your comments are welcome


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