I went to a college basketball game on Sunday.
I enjoy basketball games. I don’t get to nearly as many Arizona games as I would like. It was just a coincidence I had tickets to this one.
But I’m very glad I did.
Saturday, January 8 was full of shock and confusion and sadness. It’s very surreal to see the President of the United States talking about something that is happening in your neighborhood.
My church is two miles from Oracle and Ina. I drive past Mountain View High School to get there. We went through the now-infamous intersection on the way to the game with the flashing lights and crime scene tape making sure the previous days’ events didn’t escape our thoughts.
UA coach Sean Miller said he hoped the game allowed us to “take our mind off of something for a brief moment.”
The moments were very brief.
I did enjoy myself. It’s always fun watching Derrick Williams do his thing. It was great seeing Jamelle Horne put all his talents together. It was entertaining seeing athletic plays from Stanford’s Josh Owens and others.
I stood and cheered with the McKale crowd. I booed the refs. I tried to make jokes on Twitter.
But it was hard to maintain focus. I missed plays while constantly checking my phone for updates and reading the latest news – the clearing of the “person of interest”, the heroic people who were first to confront the shooter, the courageous UA student who never left Rep. Giffords’ side. It’s difficult to get too worked up about another player-control foul with so many bigger things going on.
Bigger things that make me feel small.
We talked about the shooting on the way to the game and all the way home. How did this happen? What will change because of this? How do you prevent this from happening again? The questions will continue to be asked, as elusive as the answers may be.
The Wildcats’ 10-point victory over Stanford was a great win for a college basketball team. Now we’re hoping for much greater wins in the hospital rooms.
Everyone deals with tragic events differently. Some will want to get everything out. Others will want to keep things to themselves. Let’s listen to each other and be there for each other.
Tucson needs to heal together. An Arizona Wildcats basketball game was a nice first step.
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