July 5, 2013

On The Rebound: This column written by request, almost

By Mitch Howard
Sports Writer

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — Someone stopped me at a recent Little League game to comment on a column. I thanked him for his kind words and asked what my next column should be about. I had options in mind.

Option A) While playing golf recently I found myself in a compromising position in a Port-O-Potty. As I recycled the many bottles of water I had drank, an angry bee attacked me while in a compromising position. I was presentable, but unbuckled as I ran from the potty. I thought it was a funny story and could be crafted into a column.

Option B) While running in the park recently I found myself contemplating life and religion. I was feeling rather blessed to be running and considered stopping to pray right there. Instead I decided it would be adequate to thank God as I continued running. It was getting dark and a few yards later I tripped over a bracket that once held a road marker. I ended up on my knees looking up at heaven. Coincidence?

Option C) As I sat at a traffic light on 192, a man jumped from his car and seemed to be upset with the driver in front of him. It would usually be unsettling to see this display in public. Does the man have a gun? Pretty sure there was no concealed carry since the man was wearing pajamas in the middle of the day. The only thing that could have made him less intimidating would have been fuzzy slippers. It would have been funny if the other driver had punched him in the face and said, “Night, night.” Maybe I have watched too many Diehard movies.

My friend sneered at these ideas and offered another option. He said it has been too long since I had written about playing basketball with friends in Rolling Acres or more specifically stories about Paul Andrews. I like to take requests, except from the people that tell me to stop writing columns. But here is the problem, there is nothing much to write about Paul Andrews.

I never saw Paul get in a fight or utter a bad word. Everyone liked Paul and would have even if he had never played for the University of Kentucky. We were classmates from kindergarten through high school and I don’t have a bad thing to say about him, so he really isn’t worthy of a column.

I think what my friend that requested a column was getting at was more about Paul the athlete. To that I can say I have seen none better. What I remember about Paul Andrews is the sound. When he ran there was just a wooosh as he went past you. It seemed effortless to us mortals that chugged and rumbled every step. He was a Corvette and I was at best a Buick.

He chose basketball and it served him well. Paul is now a hospital CEO with his education provided by a scholarship to the University of Kentucky. I think it was his third best sport. I witnessed some moon shot home runs he hit at old Greer Field. He was a smooth fielder as well.

Although Paul never played football, he did take part in some of our backyard games. It wasn’t fair when he did because no one else was on that level. There have been few on that level since.