Posts Tagged ‘Imagined Conversations with Lebron James’

Michael BarryMichael Barry is a writer who lives in Boston, MA. He received his B.A. in Financial Economics from St. Anselm College and his MFA in Creative Writing from the Stonecoast Program at the University of Southern Maine. Check him out at MichaelBarryWriter.com.

lebron-james01It was being whispered around that Lebron James was in Manchester, NH, incognito. Why he made his way to a city with no professional basketball I wasn’t sure. We met up on Elm Street, outside the Black Brimmer. We both knew where we were meeting and when, the details prearranged elsewhere. On the curb a valet weaved his way through a number of smoking college students. They were enthralled in the story of a girl they’d passed around. None of the flat brimmed polo hat bros gave heed to the 6’8” athlete in two pieces of a three-piece plaid cashmere suit. On another night in another city we might have been looking for the red carpet, the next party, the third piece of his suit. In ManchVegas we were on our way to a nightcap.


The first thing we saw turning up Lowell Street was a tow truck dragging away some unsuspecting drunk’s Cutlass Ciera. It was too early for the college kids to be at The Red Arrow Diner. The car belonged to a local. How unlikely a local would be unaware of the tow zone, Lebron stated so matter-of-factly, as though this were his usual Thursday-night-spot.

Lebron walked into the diner like it was a nightclub. He had a pseudo secret handshake with the lady behind the register and shot a kiss at the heavyset guy manning the grill before bear hugging an older gentleman reading yesterday’s paper at the counter. He had a swagger as we made our way down the line. I loved that about Lebron, that he waited in line. No shortcuts. LBsWhen we got to our place at the end he shoved his hands in his pockets and cozied up to the wall. There were four or five people in front of us. Lebron’s smile beamed as he turned to the girls ahead of us. He asked them where they went to school and immediately which dorms they lived in, favorite teachers, intramural basketball, then volleyball, tennis. He seemed to know so much about college life. The girls asked him how. He confessed how much he’d missed. How the millions of dollars couldn’t buy him one or two or four years of campus life, of skipping classes and hitting up house parties and bonfires with the gang. He never had the gang, had missed out on the opportunity to miss them and work to stay in touch after graduation. (more…)

Read Full Post »