The Mecca of Basketball

New York is a cyclical and irrational love, you spend most of your time wondering why you are there and you periodically realize you have the answer in front of your eyes. In a loop. Today the only way is north, from Central Park to Harlem, through movie sets filled with historic cars and urban parks where you have no other choice, the menu includes just barbecue and loud music. The final destination is Rucker Park, a quick search at the entrance and the vibrations change, it’s not all rhetoric what surrounds it, the place really transmits the vital energy and history of the neighborhood.

People know each other, greet each other, understand each other with a nod. The situation is so authentic that it is a pleasure to feel out of place. I sit on the sidelines. 5th and 6th grade are playing, I don’t know how old they are but they have already learned to fly. The level of basketball is “Globetrotters”, the local speaker tries to find a sense in a commentary made of counterattacks. During the breaks the children invade the field to enjoy a bit of crossover and step-back, strictly 1vs1. What better summary of the spirit of the time. Suddenly something moves, a newcomer stands out for the Supreme outfit. The hymn to sobriety resonates from the sock to the band. A brilliant number 6 around the neck. The boy seems to have personality, despite the look lost in the void. After a few minutes I realize that he is simply born ready. It’s Lance Stephenson, an NBA player from Brooklyn. The MVP of the “game” is rewarded by him, even if a bit perplexed. It may not be his model for the future, but on the pitch it perfectly represents the unpredictability of a simple New York afternoon. You never know what is going to happen.

Alberto Pizzoli

Architect, born in Verona in 1988.

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