When they got together for drinks, Eddy Jacks, Jr. and his former college teammate “Toe” Beans enjoyed reminiscing about the good old days.
“Yeah, those days were really something,” Jacks said to Beans during one such soirée.
“They were great,” Beans agreed. “It’s not like that anymore.”
Yes, much had changed for these two. Once, they had roomed together in a dirty rathole of a dormitory room. Now each resided in his own dirty rathole of an apartment.
“We used to live it up,” said Jacks. “It was crazy.”
Beans nodded. “Crazy is the right word for it, man.”
These crazy times had consisted of getting drunk, sleeping late, and playing video games. They still engaged in such activities, albeit in a joyless and mechanical way. The twang, it seemed, had left their bows.
“Not to mention the ladies,” Jacks added.
Beans smiled impishly. “Too many many to count.”
They had combined for thirty-five intimate encounters over the course of four years, a not inconsiderable sum but hardly one that defied enumeration.
“Everything was going according to plan until I tore up my knee,” Beans recalled.
“You were a first-round pick for sure. All those points. Nobody could stop you!” Jacks exclaimed.
“I made it look easy, Eddy.”
“That you did. What a vertical leap, too.”
“I mean, hell, J.P. Crackerjack went pro.”
“He didn’t have anything on you, ‘Toe.’ You were twice the player he was.”
J.P. Crackerjack, a contemporary of these two gallants, had been drafted by the Cleveland Spartans and proceeded to set numerous records over the course of his ten-year career. “Toe” Beans, who had started for half of his sophomore season, lost his position to Crackerjack prior to suffering an ACL injury.
Already three sheets to the wind, Jacks lifted his glass and proposed a toast. “To what might have been!”
Beans touched his glass to Jacks’ but said nothing. The past was all over him now, both the way he remembered it as well as the way it had actually happened.
“Are you okay?” Jacks asked.
“Just got to thinking,” Beans said.
Beans sighed. “About how I wouldn’t trade those days for anything.”
Not that anyone would take them, of course. They were worthless.