The two-thousand-and-twelfth year of our existence wasn’t entirely kind to everyone. The lockout gave us an unfulfilling and truncated basketball season, unemployment rates continued to sneer in our faces, many white men spent many white dollars on silly white things, we lost geniuses, we lost lovers. In an attempt to ease the transition into 2013 the NBA has amended the meanings of certain hand signals to curb any nasty emotional habits players and/or fans may inadvertently be carrying over into the new year. The NBA Playoffs can now be used as your unofficial therapist, a coping mechanism of sorts, a guide to our past mistakes and future successes:
DOUBLE FOUL (SHAME ON ME) – Each time a player commits a double foul remind yourself of the last time you made the same mistake twice. In a small notebook, pocket-sized preferred, document the last instance of a double foul in your life. Revisit this notebook occasionally to remind yourself to learn from these mistakes. However, there are additional penalties for dwelling on said mistakes. Continue the play.
BLOCKING (YOUR OWN AMBITIONS) – For every blocking foul mentally delete any excuse you’ve created that has stopped you from achieving an intense want or desire that sprung from the deepness of your being. Every violation of this rule results in one (1) meatless salad. LIGHT dressing.
PLAYER CONTROL FOUL (ACCEPTANCE OF COINCIDENCE AND THE POSSIBILITY OF MULTIPLE DESTINIES) – Invest personal time to contemplate the uncontrollable aspects of human existence and accept these occurrences as inevitable, unchangeable, and above all else — beautiful. Invite the spreading light of the unknown.
TRAVELING (THE HALLOWED GROUNDS OF YOUR ANCESTRY/YOUR OWN BACKYARD/YOUR FINITE GALAXIES) – Eschew the desire to explore romantic ideas and locations as escapism. Investigate thoroughly the hidden magic and subtle inspiration of your town, your state, your unknown country. Burrow into America and pour yourself back into its mold. Search your familial line to discover ultimate awe in the power of accidental existence. Sleep in the bathtub and appreciate your personal space in different styles; snort the remnants of fading love letters. Create a mental quilt of blessed human interactions. Weep at the fingerprints those you have cared for have left on you; weep for they are gorgeous and irremovable and they have altered the landscape of your skin and at its core the way it will continue to function. A dismissal of said beauties will result in a penalty of two (2) visits to the DMV.
OVER AND BACK (UNKNOWN ORIGINS) – [The referee will adopt a Vincent Price affectation and repeat the following:] “There are dreams, yes, dreams that exist in mists and echoes. Dreams that are not happenings, that are not locations nor interactions, but dreams that are only feelings. These fogs creep from your infancy and stalk you in vampiric happenstance. And these dreams, these echoes of gripping dark fears, we shall let them breathe and recognize their tangible existence.” Players are penalized for attempting to execute a normal day after experiencing an internal terror planted unknowingly in the player’s psyche. Take a nap and learn to respect the paralyzing affronts of your mind’s perpetuity.
HOLDING (NOTHING BACK) – And when you do, scold yourself like your father would.
SUCCESSFUL 3-POINT FIELD GOAL (REVERIE) – Celebrate wildly the intricate oddities of your person. Illuminate! You are a light! You are the dizzying beauty of flight!