March 23, 2006
I've got mad skills (or is that bad skills?)
The Greet Machine is a labor of love. I write all this crap day after day without any thoughts of making tons of money or getting any recognition whatsoever for my efforts. That is the way it is and I am comfortable with that. You may think I am being paid by the Twins or people related to the Twins stadium efforts, but alas, no. I am truly stupid enough to do all this work on my own time and dime. It is really humbling to think about. However, I will say that recent events have been a nice change in my favor.
You see, all my inane ramblings about stadiums, and all my work on the Voter's Guide, has actually, for the first time, resulted in a tangible benefit for me. Yes, I have finally made "connections." I bet you didn't know this, but you are reading a blog by someone who "knows people." And one of those "people" actually came through for me in a way I didn't expect. Yesterday, I was invited to play basketball on the Final Four court set up at the Metrodome.
Let me give you some background. I was a pretty decent basketball player in high school. I was the captain of my high school team. At the time my high school (in Virginia Beach, VA) was well known as being the high school of both JR Reid (where has he gone to?) and DJ Dozier (the old Vikings RB flop). During a Lefty Dreisell camp one summer I was selected for a 15 person All-Star team. If you'll note, sometimes the top tagline of this blog states, "Internet home of the 1991 Kempsville High School slam dunk championship runner-up." I don't say all of this to brag, but only to set up how far I have fallen.
Wow, I am really a bad basketball player right now. I think the skills are still there, but I am just way too out of shape to make it work. It was embarrassing. I make Jabba the Hut look healthy. In the games I played in yesterday I literally had to stay on the defensive side of the court because I knew I wouldn't make it back if I ran all the way down. So, in other words, the humbling of Shane Nackerud continues. As Cheesehead Craig has pointed out, I have lost my pride, I have lost almost all of my hope, and now I am being humbled seemingly on a daily basis. I have really got to get back in shape!
You would think that because of my inability to run more than 10 feet I would have had a bad time. Ha! That is where you are wrong! I had a great time! How often do you get to play basketball at the Metrodome? Not often. I mean, I played on the same court Villanova will play on Friday night! It really gave me a unique perspective of what the players will see and how the court is set up from a player's point of view. And plus, I got some great pictures.
I tried to get a picture of the whole set up here. How the spectator seats are laid out, etc.
Here is another picture of the people I played b-ball with. Good people all, and in much better shape than me. I was impressed.
After the games I went down into the bowels of the Dome where I found this sign to the Vikings locker room. I asked a security guard if the locker rooms were open, and he said, "Are you a player?" I said, "No." Then he said, "I don't have a key. Sorry." So, I said, "What if I would have said I was a player?" And he said, "I guess we'll never know, heh?" That was a bummer.
Here is a picture of me trying to dunk. Pathetic. I used to be quite the dunking artist, but now I couldn't jump over a phone book.
This is where I went into the Dome, the "Loading Dock." Ever wonder what is behind this door?
Stairs and then...
A revolving door that leads to a guard desk. Now you know!
Anyway, even though I barely made it off the court alive and breathing, I had a great time. I had a blast! Special thanks to the Big D for inviting me. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I am very thankful to get the chance to do this. So, thanks Bid D. Plus, you've got a pretty nice jump shot! Let me know if I can ever take part in something like this again or if I can ever do something for you!
Posted by snackeru at March 23, 2006 11:16 AM | Life
Oh, excellent. Looks like a good time!
Posted by: bjhess at March 23, 2006 12:40 PM
Posted by: Cheesehead Craig at March 23, 2006 2:14 PM
Nice pics, congrats. I've always wondered what the Dome would be like for a b-ball game... can anyone attest to the quality of seats? Perhaps in the upper deck?
Posted by: spycake at March 23, 2006 4:30 PM
Back when I was a college basketball fan, I went to the regional tournament in the Dome and sat in the upper deck. I was on an end of the court and it wasn't much different than going to a T-Wolves game at the Target Center and sitting in the upper deck, except that it was really bright up there. Oh, and the hugeness of the building behind the court was a little distracting.
I sat in the lower deck for a T-Wolves game in their inagural season and it was not too bad.
Posted by: SBG at March 25, 2006 1:10 PM
It is superb!!!
Posted by: emma at March 27, 2006 12:50 AM
It reminds me of when a friend and I sneak through the bowels of the Metrodome during Gopher baseball games. The Vikings locker room is always locked, but I've gotten into the Gophers locker room, both press boxes, the Twins kitchen, and both dugouts (those were after the games of course)
Posted by: TwinsJunkie at April 1, 2006 12:42 AM