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3/30/2020 4:41 pm  #1


Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

The Prelude
The country of Oneioea (AHN-yo-uh) lies in the middle of the Ocean of the Swords. You can’t miss it, unless you’re looking for it. The population of 10,000,000 exports plenty of coal, carrots and titanium throughout the world. But Oneioea produces something with slightly more entertainment value: crappy soap operas and basketball talent.
 
For now, we’ll focus on the latter.
 
Our story begins in 1968. The capital city Murdlock had secured enough funding to build a recreation center and a gym, the first of its kind. Murdlock lies in the southeast corner of the land with a handful of smaller cities and towns surrounding. The gym contained a basketball court, as well as a walk-around track above the court. The track was typically used by the older crowd. The gym had very little burn outside of a place for kids to play tag and indoor kickball in the summer. The only two basketballs were a little underinflated. The rims were slightly rusted and the nets, bought used, dangled on the strength of a handful of strings.
https://i.imgur.com/sxrdZOk.png

Along came Cameron Murphy Jr. Cameron was a superstar athlete at Murdlock High, playing basketball and baseball. He played a little bit in college overseas, but ultimately came back home after graduation, just as the recreation center was built. He missed the game and wanted to give it back to the community that helped raise him. He applied to work as a camp counselor with the rec. However, as Cameron tried to persuade the rec director to hold basketball clinics for children, he was met with a polite no. Basketball just wasn’t going to generate enough revenue and there wasn’t enough money to upgrade the equipment.  

He had a basketball in his car, a 1962 Watson Mountainmover. He donated it, but the director still said no. Cameron gathered some fishing nets and mustered a rough make-shift twine to hang from the rim. It didn’t look half-bad. Alas, the director denied again.

Cameron didn’t care. He loved the game, a love the city didn’t reciprocate. Sure, Murdlock High had teams and played all over the country, but that was high school. The fans consisted of the parents who forced their kids to play just to stay in shape. It wasn’t a profit driver by any means.

Against the wishes of the director (really without the director knowing), Cameron, who had a key, unlocked the gym at 11:00 at night. He turned on a single light that hung over the center of the complex. He approached the north free throw line, dribbled twice, whispered “one of one,” and swished the ball through. The nets held up pretty solid for being homemade. He repeated until “ten of ten” and then ran through some jump shot drills. Sprinting back and forth, the ball returned to his hand naturally with quick pace.

When he concluded with another set of ten free throws, Cameron gazed up at the large clock on the wall – it was 1:00 in the morning. He hopped back in his Mountainmover with tired legs and a plan. He had just completed two hours of uninterrupted hooping. Two hours was all he needed to execute his plan.

The following Saturday, Cameron called up a few of his friends, long distance. First, he hit up Brian Williams, an old high school teammate who had also played professionally overseas. Brian lived up in Desherd City across the river, “working for the man” as he tended to put it. He was just as bald as he was when Cameron used to hit him on a bounce pass in the low post.

“So Brian you uh… you trying to play some ball down in Murdlock?”

“M******** what?” Brian was known amongst friends for his blunt and colorful language.

“Yeah man. I got the keys to the gym here.”

“Tonight? S**** I don’t have anything better to do.”

They agreed to meet at Cameron’s apartment at 10:55 that evening and walk over, just so as the police don’t get suspicious about a bunch of cars in the parking lot.

Cameron then called Andre Oz, the slick shooter who moved out of Murdlock the month prior. Andre ran the Horrible Woeful Unsatisfactory Logo and Apparel Company out in Gilroy. Andre never played after high school, even though he would have dominated the college ranks. He had other interests, namely the girls. He was muscular, confident and walked with swagger.

“Andre man, Brian and I are playing ball tonight at the Murdlock gym. You want in?”

“Consider yourself dusted, baby. I’ll see you later.” Andre called everyone baby.

After leaving the apartment to grab some lunch from Shane’s Café (a couple simple slices of crisped bacon and some hash browns), Cameron walked through the Harriot West neighborhood. He spotted two familiar faces in a driveway, duking it out. Carl Baker, a spry, skinny and short 19-year old. His eyes were colored with raging arrogance as he shot a volleyball at the hoop that perched above the garage door. It clanked off the back iron to the other side. The other kid, Evans Strong, reached and grabbed the ball before it would have planted itself in the grass. Evans was stocky and shaggy. It looked like he hadn’t had a haircut in years. Cameron recognized the duo from the sports section of the paper. Carl and Evans led the Murdlock High team to a championship two years ago. Knowing this information and seeing the poor display of horse-around hoops typical of driveway games, Cameron laid out his proposition.

“You guys trying to hoop tonight? Like, really hoop against some competition?”

Carl and Evans agreed. At 10:55, it was on.

Cameron had five guys for the night and felt pretty confident he could find enough to run a full game. He called up Brian’s brother Michael, who loved the idea and said he couldn’t wait. Michael said he would help recruit others. A half hour later, Michael called back and said he had two buddies, Dustin Wesley and Darren Wyzell, willing to play. They needed one more man to run fives.

Cameron had only told one other person outside of the rec director about his ambitions to start the youth clinic. 

That was Wesley Howard Jr., a fellow camp counselor and “the most feared pitcher in indoor kickball,” according to the kids.

Wesley liked the idea but doubted its success. Cameron thought Wesley would play that night for two reasons: Wesley was single, and he was bored. That’s exactly what Cameron told him in his sales pitch on the phone. Begrudgingly, mostly because he couldn’t refute the facts, Wesley accepted the invitation.

Cameron had his ten. He pumped his fist in front of him.

Little did they know, this would become the foundlings of the country’s biggest source of entertainment.

And it started at the apartment parking lot at 10:55 that night.
_______________________________________________

Please let me know what you think. More to come later.

Last edited by HWULA (3/30/2020 4:55 pm)


https://i.imgur.com/9xazS3v.png
 

3/31/2020 12:31 am  #2


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

The First Game
Cameron walked outside of his apartment at 10:50 and sat on the hood of the Mountainmover. He laid back on the windshield and tried to find Orion, his favorite constellation. He spotted it fairly easily just as other cars pulled up next to his. Brian and Michael pulled up in a silver Watson Minislick, Isley Brothers playing out the stereo. The rest of the gang arrived promptly and they walked over to the rec center.

Everyone introduced themselves to the others on the walk over. It was a hodge-podge of characters. Very cordial as the streetlights illuminated the sidewalks. Ten minutes later, Cameron stuck the key in the hole, cranked to the left and opened the floodgates of basketball culture.

The gentlemen wasted no time. No warmups. No pre-game shots. Nothing. Cameron just flicked the light switch, one single light in the middle, and they went around and picked teams by shooting free throws. As it turned out:

Team #1


  • Cameron Murphy
  • Dustin Wesley
  • Devin Wyzell
  • Brian Williams
  • Michael Williams 

Team #2

  • Carl Baker
  • Evans Strong
  • Andre Oz
  • Wesley Howard Jr.

Wait… Cameron had screwed up. He thought he had ten. He only had nine. ARGH!!

Just as the men realized this erroneous miscalculation, the door to the gym was pushed open. In entered a young man named Marcus Moss, but everyone called him Deacon. He was the janitor who came in before the gym closed up at 5:00. He was sporting cream unicorn pajamas, comfy slippers and a stare of bewilderment at the activity he walked in on. His shirt said, “I don’t know if the author can count to ten.”

Confused, Carl asked Andre what the shirt meant.

“Oh yeah. We made that shirt over at the Horrible Woeful Unsatisfactory Logo and Apparel company out in Gilroy. It’s one of our bestsellers.”

That didn’t give Carl an answer, but he took it in stride and just shrugged as the plot continued as if nothing happened.

“Hey Deacon, what are you doing here?” Wesley Howard asked.

“Well, I very conveniently left my wallet in the break room and thought I would stop by here to look for it. What are you gentlemen doing here?”

Cameron explained they were just trying to ball but that there was a miscount. He asked Deacon if he would want to play.

“And what’s going to happen if I say no?”

“Um… I’m not sure. It’s not like this game is going to be covered or written about in 50 years or anything. So nothing I guess.”

Reassured by the lack of notoriety this particular game would receive, while simultaneously scared of creating a roadblock in the story by leaving, Deacon joined the group. He breathed a sigh of relief once he realized he could play in his pajamas without anyone commenting on his crude appearance or poor fashion choices. He was especially grateful once he concluded no one would be able to draw him or picture him in these garments, let alone talk about them. 
https://i.imgur.com/ZvMIdUE.png

He was on Andre’s team, which referred to themselves as Team #2, since they all missed their free throws


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3/31/2020 4:09 pm  #3


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

The Actual Game Now That the Author Can Count
The game was a simple pickup game to 16 points, win by two, every basket worth 1 point (there is no 3-point line.)

The ball pounded the hardwood with fervency as the players drove past each other, putting defenders in a spin cycle and gliding to the basket. Some of the older players, namely Devin Wyzell and Dustin Wesley, struggled against the young guns. Carl zipped past Michael numerous times and either finished the layup or whipped it to a teammate in the short corner. Cameron, Andre and Brian had the most intense battles. There was physicality as Brian and Andre banged it out down low.

With Team #1, Brian and Cameron’s team, up 16-15, Brian dropped into the middle of the lane and threw the ball threw the hoop. Andre argued Brian took an extra step and travelled.

“You gotta put that ball on the floor a little quicker there, baby. You walked.”

“Nah man. That was clean as a Sunday service.”

Carl offered Brian shoot for the decision, even though it was pretty much just Andre creating the conflict. It was pretty well regarded among the group Brian move was legal.

Brian picked up the ball, shot from the elbow, and swished the ball through. Game over. Team #1 with the victory 17-15.
https://i.imgur.com/FxmOBaM.png
“Let’s run it back,” Andre proposed, frustrated.

Cameron checked the clock. He was hoping to clean up a little bit before the rec opened up at 5:00. But he, and the others, had so much fun competing he wanted to play again.
 
“We down to run one more?” he asked.

Collectively, the same smile stretched across everyone’s face


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3/31/2020 9:15 pm  #4


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

This feels satirical.


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4/01/2020 2:11 pm  #5


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

ThisIsFine wrote:

This feels satirical.

I just wanted to write something light-hearted and fun for an origin story I hope you've enjoyed reading thus far!


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4/01/2020 2:35 pm  #6


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

I like it. Different in a good way. Keep up the good work HWULA

 

4/01/2020 5:03 pm  #7


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

ussmidway wrote:

I like it. Different in a good way. Keep up the good work HWULA

Thank you kindly.


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4/01/2020 5:07 pm  #8


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

A Meeting with The Man
The basketball junkies held a sequel that lasted until 3:00 in the morning. Team #1 came through victorious again, this time by a wider margin of 16-8. The Williams brothers put on a solid show, combining for 12 points and a rolled ankle that was not terribly serious. Brian needed no ice as he once again scored the game clinching point.

Cameron confirmed with everyone they would again do the same thing next week – two games starting at 11:00 that night. He hadn’t had this much fun in a long time, and he had the impression he wasn’t alone in thinking that.

The weeks continued to roll on into months and the fellas kept competing in the overnight. They started to add other elements to maintain the energy. Brian brought in the stereo so they could listen to the radio while they played. Dustin brought a makeshift water jug with ice that he filled up so they could stay hydrated. And Andre brought in some sleeveless shirts that he cut up himself at the Horrible Woeful Unsatisfactory Logo and Apparel company. He even printed up a diagram of the shorts that would come in in the later months.
https://i.imgur.com/P125vrN.png

https://i.imgur.com/Pj6vyoV.png

“How come there’s no M on our shorts?” Cameron asked.

“Oh, it was a stylistic choice, baby,” Andre said smoothly.

Cameron knew that was a damn lie. He figured Andre didn’t think about adding the M until he already submitted the first set of uniforms.
 
----------------------------

Late one December evening, the rec director, Ian Thomas, was walking past the rec center when he heard a racket inside. He heard faintly the sounds of the Jackson 5 pumping through the walls and the squeak of tennis shoes cutting up the hardwood. He walked around to the front door of the center and walked up to the track.

Ian stood there in amazement of what he saw below him on the court. Ten men danced gracefully along the lines of the gymnasium. The ball glazed through the netting melodically. At some point, Ian closed his eyes for a few moments and listened.

He finally understood why Cameron continued to pester him. It was a beautiful display of athleticism. He thought it could sell if it was marketed correctly. He could run tickets cheaply, set up about 200 chairs around the track, and partner with other businesses. 

Per usual, it was 3:00 in the morning before the games concluded. As they were going through high fiving each other, Ian whistled down from his perch. The group simultaneously looked up, shocked to see the bossman waving down at them. Ian called Cameron up to his office.

Cameron, shook to the core, was certain he was about to lose his job. He urged the others to get out the building and go home. Nervous, he trudged his way up the stairs, through the main gym doors and into Ian’s office.

Ian’s feet crossed and propped on top of his desk. His grin was wide, resembling a car bumper. After a few seconds, he spoke.
https://i.imgur.com/GY2M5p5.png

“Cameron. I appreciate what you’ve done here at the rec. You’re great with the kids, you’re very smart. The parents seem to love you.”

Cameron, shaking not minutes earlier at the prospect of being unemployed, now sat confused in silence. Ian continued.

“You’ve dogged me about a damn basketball clinic for a very long time now. After seeing what I just witnessed tonight, I am going to grant you your wish and I want to throw some ideas around.”

“Thank you, sir. I really appreciate it. I thought you were going to fire me.”

Ian chuckled.

“I thought about it briefly. You broke into my gym, and I’m going to assume this wasn’t the first time you’ve done this.”

Cameron shook his head, slightly embarrassed but also a little proud of himself for getting away with it for such a long time.

The director went on.

“I want to open this up to the public and put you guys on. I think if we promoted this correctly, it could be a hit. We would secure partnerships with businesses, cut deals for our gym membership and provide people with a clean getaway from daily life. It would also be a hint of nostalgia watching you, the Prodigal Son, come home and ball out like you used to.”

Outside of the fact he could see Ian was simply trying to make a dime off of this, Cameron couldn’t help but feel warm inside. He loved playing, but he also yearned to give back to the kids. If this is what it took to get a clinic, by golly he was all for it.

“Were you guys planning on doing this again next week?”

Cameron nodded.

“Next time you see them, tell them my idea and see what they think. We can run a trial night game on December 21st if they agree to it. Bring the same jerseys you were wearing tonight. If all goes well then, we’ll set up a short series of games. We’ll go best of 5 and run it in January or February. I’ll work on finding partners and someone to market this thing. How does that sound?”

Cameron couldn’t help but smile. He felt his thin moustache stretch across his face.

“I’m in."


https://i.imgur.com/9xazS3v.png
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4/07/2021 1:52 pm  #9


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

I mean this in the best way possible, the stick figure drawings sell it for me. I could see this being like an extension of TBT, except instead of a tournament, it becomes a local beer league basketball deal. Keep this work up, there’s some amazing potential here.


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4/07/2021 3:31 pm  #10


Re: Good If It Goes: The Story of the OBA

ProsecutorMilesEdgeworth wrote:

I mean this in the best way possible, the stick figure drawings sell it for me. I could see this being like an extension of TBT, except instead of a tournament, it becomes a local beer league basketball deal. Keep this work up, there’s some amazing potential here.

You realize that this hasn’t been posted on since over a year ago?


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