Friday, November 09, 2007

Bull kept chanting "Cry, cry, cry," each time the ball ricocheted off his son's skull

Wherein don't try this with a 5-year old after a league soccer game. I swear no one has a sense of humor, anymore. Community service my ass. You know what would be a community service? Learning to pass the frickin' ball to the open man in front of the frickin' goal.

Michael Jordan's son Jeffrey has beaten him at basketball and, surprise! Michael's not too happy or proud. I hope I'm not the only one who immediately thought of the Pat Conroy's The Great Santini. For the movie, this scene was memorably recreated by Robert Duvall and Michael O'Keefe; both of whom were nominated for Oscars. According to his wiki, O'Keefe was married to Bonnie Raitt and is a Zen priest. Okay.
Then Bull shouted at Ben, "Hey, jocko, you gotta win by two baskets."

The backyard became quiet again. Ben looked at his father and said, "You said by one."

"I changed my mind; let's go," Bull said picking up the basketball.

"Oh, no, Bull," Lillian said, marching toward her husband. You're not going to cheat the boy out of his victory."

"Who in the hell asked you anything?" Bull said, glaring at his wife.

"I don't care if anybody asked me or not. He beat you fair and square and I'm not going to let you take that away from him."

"Get over here, mama's boy," Bull said, motioning to Ben, "and let's you and me finish this game."

"Mama, I'm gonna play him," Ben said.

"No you're not," his mother answered harshly, with finality, then speaking to her husband, she said, "He beat you, Big Marine. He beat the big Marine where everybody could see it, right out in the open, and it was beautiful. Big Marine can't take it that his baby boy just beat him to death on the basketball court."

"You sort of like winning, don't you, Dad?" Ben said, trying to sound unconcerned and in control, but fear lay heavy on his voice.

Bull went up to Ben until they were almost nose to nose, as Ben had seen Drill Instructors do to recruits. With his forefinger, he began poking Ben's chin. "You get smart with me, jocko, and I'll kick you upstairs with your mother so you pussies can bawl together. Now guard me. You gotta win by two."

"I'm not gonna guard you, Dad. I won, Ben said, his voice almost breaking. He could feel himself about to cry.

Bull saw it too. "That's it, mama's boy. Start to cry. I want to see you cry," Bull roared, his voice at full colume, a voice of drill fields; a voice to be heard above the thunder of jet engines, a voice to be heard above the din of battle. Bull took the basketball and threw it into Ben's forehead. Ben turned to walk into the house, but Bull followed him, matching his steps and throwing the basketball against his son's head at intervals of three steps. Bull kept chanting "Cry, cry, cry," each time the ball ricocheted off his son's skull.


Blogger reader_iam said...

That scene in the movie made me sob the first time I saw it, and then I got so, so angry.

The shit we so-called adults can pull.

11/09/2007 06:24:00 PM  

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