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Thoughts For Thursday: A Wonderful Moment At A High School Basketball Game

December 9, 2010 · 23 comments

in Commentary, Thoughts For Thursday

I know when you read the title you might have thought “Oh, a Rudy-type story.  A child overcomes adversity and sinks a half-court shot at the buzzer to win the game.”

Sorry to disappoint, but my ‘moment’ occurred before the game even started!  You may not find the event as inspiring as I did, as sometimes it is just hard to describe a situation well enough in writing, but I hope you do.

I was at my daughter’s high school Varsity basketball game this past Tuesday.  Right before the start of the Varsity game, our school plays a recording of the National Anthem.

So, the teams were standing there looking at the flag, as was the audience, waiting for the song to start.  However, no music was playing.  Obviously there were technical difficulties, and I personally was waiting for the song to come blaring out of the speakers and startle me.  Everyone stood and waited there uncomfortably, when all the sudden, our  team started singing “Oh Say Can You See…”  Next thing you know, the coaches were singing, the refs were singing, and all the fans were singing.  Standing there singing myself, watching my daughter sing down on the gym floor, and seeing both my sons singing in the stands gave me chills.  To me, it was wonderful that everyone in the gym seemed to know the words, and were happy to sing them.  I could hear some very beautiful voices just singing aloud and from the bottom of their heart.  It was a wonderful experience.  At the end of the song, there was a lot of cheering, and everyone seemed to enjoy singing the song.  It got me thinking- why don’t we all sing the National Anthem before every game instead of standing through a recording?  It seemed so much more meaningful coming from the players and the people all around us.

After the game, I asked my daughter how the singing started.  She said that when it became obvious that the recording was not going to start, the coach leaned over to the girls and said “start singing”, and they did.  They sang like it was a song they had been practicing for weeks, even though they had not.  I give the coach credit because it would have been easy to just announce an apology and say ‘sorry, but tonight the National Anthem will not be played’.  However, he did the right thing and had the girls sing to honor our country.  I am so glad everyone else followed along.

What do you think?  Would you rather sing the National Anthem yourself, or listen to someone else (or a recording) perform it?  Perhaps it was the uniqueness that made it so special and the novelty would wear off after a couple games.  I don’t know, but it was a moment I truly enjoyed.

(Ironically, the game did end with a buzzer beater from outside the 3 point line to win the game.  Unfortunately, it was against us!  It was the other team’s best player that scored, which is not nearly as dramatic as if Rudy came in and sunk the shot.)

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

First Gen American December 9, 2010 at 6:40 am

You are a great storyteller. I love this little window into your life.

I hate singing in public so I’d vote for keeping things the way they are, but I’m glad you had this experience.


Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:41 pm

Thank you First Gen!

Believe me, I hate singing in public too. I usually just mouth the words. 🙂


101 Centavos December 9, 2010 at 7:10 am

Great story, Kris. A well-done to your daughter’s coach for taking the initiative. That’s about the only time I can inflict my singing on others, when I’m singing in a crowd.


Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:43 pm

I am great at ‘muttering’ when I sing. Actually, it is more of a ‘soft muttering’. I don’t know though, there was something about this that everyone was just singing and not caring. It was very nice.

Maybe you just need to make some beer bread before singing?


The Grouch December 9, 2010 at 7:45 am

Gotta love those spontaneous moments where good things happen.


Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:44 pm

Isn’t that funny how you just can’t plan for the great moments in life. Uh oh, I think I feel a new post coming on….


Jacq @ Single Mom Rich Mom December 9, 2010 at 9:15 am

Great story! We sing O Canada and don’t listen to a recording. I thought that was normal. Sometimes I cry. 🙁
Here’s a Christmas themed flash mob. I just love it when all the food court people get up and sing too.



Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:57 pm

I like it your way best Jacq- just singing. Maybe our way is abnormal and I was just unaware of how things are usually done.

I love that video. Can you imagine how great it would have been to be there??


Jacq @ Single Mom Rich Mom December 9, 2010 at 4:40 pm

Well, we do usually have a singer start it all at the big events, just like I think I’ve seen you guys do on TV. I love that video too, it’s done in Niagara Falls (Canadian side). 🙂 It’s been too long since I’ve seen Handel’s Messiah performed, and nice to see that so many non-professional singer people remember the words, which I certainly don’t.


Kris December 10, 2010 at 7:55 am

I was thinking the same thing- I definitely did not know even 30 percent of the words to the song!


Crystal @ BFS December 9, 2010 at 9:36 am

Huh…every time the national anthem plays here, we all sing. I thought it was like that everywhere. We treat the recordings as the backup beat. 🙂 I think it’s one of the few songs that I actually know all the words to, lol.


Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:51 pm

So even for high school everyone sings where you live? Maybe I just live in an usual area then. Every game (except opening night) I have been to, the high school pulls out a recorded National Anthem.


Crystal @ BFS December 10, 2010 at 2:26 pm

Even in middle school games, we all sing. 🙂


Aloysa December 9, 2010 at 10:43 am

I like to listen to someone sing. I have no singing voice, no music sense and believe me no one wants to hear me sing. LOL


Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:50 pm

I am always so happy to hear someone really sing. I actually envy people that have no problem just belting it out when they sing. I would never do that, and nobody would want me to. I do like to hum though. 🙂


Nicole December 9, 2010 at 11:26 am



Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:49 pm

It really was kind of an ‘awww’ moment. Well, at least for me. I love little things in life!


Squirrelers December 9, 2010 at 1:01 pm

That’s a cool experience. What’s neat to me is that A)everybody seemed to have a sense of patriotism, B)the girls seemed to know the song well (you never know these days), and C)The coach showed some good leadership with the kids.

This story makes you feel like waving a flag, eating some apple pie, grilling out with the family, and lining up for a parade. Except it’s bitterly cold here in Chicago today, but that’s just a minor detail:)

As for the singing….I like what is done at many stadiums for major sporting events, where there is a designated singer and people can join in if they want. The more that join, the less people are able to hear my voice. If I ever try to sing, my daughter is the first person to say that Daddy can’t sing:)


Kris December 9, 2010 at 2:48 pm

I agree Squirrel, I was so happy that the girls were able to just all sing together right from the start, and they sounded so good! I did feel more ‘patriotic’ after the game, much more so than when I just stand there and a recording is playing.

The people around me may have beens singing loudly to drown out my voice. 🙂


Roshawn @ Watson Inc December 9, 2010 at 3:51 pm

That is a great story! It was a tangible expression of national pride that was enhanced by the uniqueness of this situation. It is funny, but I don’t typically regard spontaneous bursts into singing with such fondness.


Kris December 10, 2010 at 7:56 am

I don’t think I have been around many spontaneous outbursts of song. This may have been my first. I can guarantee though I will never start a spontaneous burst of song myself.


Jen Lau December 9, 2010 at 10:12 pm

I think that is a great idea singing the National Anthem before every game without a recording.


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