Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Robin

Raf thought it was real cool how they got the afternoon off school for the tournament. The bus came and picked them up by the gate; they waited in pairs and some off them played hand clapping games. Roger was a few rows behind him singing "under the bam-bushes". Raf just stood there next to some girl with skin coloured cotton briefs on (he only noticed when she bent down to tighten her shoelaces). An older guy, André, was being led across the grounds in the distance by the deputy principal. He was swearing and his face was all scrunched up. He always got in trouble. Raf didn't really talk to anyone on the bus. He sat up the front. That's where the people who didn't have much to say sat. Everyone else sat at the back. Roger was there, at the back, in the middle, smiling and laughing a lot and singing another song, this one was about diarrhea and all the girls were sparkly eyed and giggling and swinging their legs into the aisles and touching their hair.

The courts were all lined up next to each other. It made it easier for the round robin that way. They didn't play proper matches like the professionals. They only played three sets. The courts he normally practised on were concrete and a bit gravelly and Raf would run around a lot and often fall over and graze himself. One day I will play on clay he thought while he was watching Shakira videos after school at his Nana's house.

Raf won all of the games in the robin and found himself in the finals with Roger. Roger had on a red ralph loren polo tee and white shorts which hung off his hips in a way which accentuated his calf muscles. Raf couldn't understand it either but there they were, marinating in his perfect tan. No one really knew that Raf could play let alone well because he got private lessons from his uncle, not from the school coach Jenny who came into teach on Wednesday lunch times.

Roger won the first set 40-love and some boys on the side line called Raf a faggot. A group of blonde girls with olive skin made up a chant for Roger. 1-2-3-4 LETS GO ROGER. They clapped their hands and jumped up and down, giggled a lot and touched their hair.

Raf won the next two sets 40-30, and advantage two. At home he swished three teaspoons of Milo into a glass of milk, put on a Bikini Kill record and looked at the space on his wrist where a few years later a Richard Mille RM027 Tourbillon watch valued at half a million dollars would be.


  1. I read this whilst this song played [ ], thnx Alice!

  2. Wow this blog the great! I enjoy your story