What the neighbors must think...

It has been noted before that the games played in and around my house are of the over-the-top competitive variety. When my husband enters the fray, and he and the children play a game of family soccer or family basketball, it's a no-holds-barred proposition. Those famous Kennedy games have nothing on us. But this morning was one for the books. As in "Book 'im!"

I had just put the baby to sleep when I heard the doorbell ring. I found this very irritating because it had taken me forever to get the baby to sleep because Mike and the kids were outside playing basketball and I could hear their wailing and moaning and screaming  cheering and encouraging through the front windows. Patrick, in particular, was going on and on about someone's shooting ability or lack of it.

As I went to the door, my heart leapt to see a sheriff's deputy through the front window. Outside, were four police cars. The tree was in the way and  I could only see two of my children. My head raced as I thought about streets and basketballs and cars. I opened the door.

"Ma'am, are you okay?"

"Except for the fact that you're scaring me, I'm fine."

"Is there anyone else in the house?"

"A sleeping baby--everyone else is out here."  I could see my husband now, punching buttons on his Treo. Good grief, must he check his email now? Doesn't he even notice the heavy presence of law enforcement?

"Ma'am, we got a 9-1-1 call from this location. A child was screaming in the background and we heard him say something about a shotgun."

"Um, no, not from here. I'm the only one in here and the baby was with me."

" The call was from your husband's cell phone."

There he was, standing there holding the Treo, grinning at me a bit sheepishly.

And there was a flash of insight.

"Officer, I think maybe the phone got bumped  and it dialed while they were playing and you heard my son yelling about a shot. A missed shot (I made a basketball shooting motion with my hands). In basketball."

And now I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, exactly what it sounds like to the rest of the world when my family plays a friendly game of basketball.