Keeping 40 Years Of Friendship Alive With Basketball

September 10, 2019

(In Mandarin) We have known each other since we were young. (Bao Chou): We met while playing basketball. Back then, we saw each other every day so we would play together and chat. (Teck Ann): Both play and fight! (Bao Chou): Even till now, we’re still playing basketball together. [Cheer] [Doorbell ringing] The 30 of us are a group of friends who love playing basketball. Amongst us, we have… Jia Qiang, you can say that he is our big boss. Geng Wen, he used to be the most popular player. Da Jiao is the oldest player in our team. And there’s Teck Ann. He has the most number of fans from National Junior College. (Teck Ann): I sell mixed rice at National Junior College. (Teck Ann): We have all been friends for 30 to 40 years. (Bao Chou): Teck Ann always made us skip class to play basketball. He complained that there was no one else to play with. So we skipped class to play with him. (Teck Ann): They were worse influences! After playing, they made me chase girls with them. [Laughs] (Geng Wen): At that time, we were studying at The Chinese High School. (Teck Ann): Nanyang Girls’ School was our sister school. (Bao Chou): We didn’t do well in our studies… but our lovers were from a prestigious school! [Laughs] (Bao Chou): After we graduated from school we lost contact with each other. Two years ago, by coincidence… (Bao Chou): We called one another and now we have so many friends back here playing. (Jia Qiang): Every Wednesday, rain or shine we will come here either to play basketball or to gather. We felt happier the more we played. because we were back together playing and reminiscing. In the 29 years of my marriage my wife and I were always together. After I started playing basketball every week she got very angry. I was gone for a full three hours! If Da Jiao or anyone else doesn’t come to play this week we will know. (Da Jiao): We will look through the orbituary section. (Geng Wen): We will definitely get hooked on playing basketball. This addiction motivates us to exercise. (Geng Wen): After playing, we will relive the past with alcohol. We will talk nonsense! (Teck Ann): They drink, but I don’t. I don’t drink! (Geng Wen): There are many famous players that came from our team. There are a lot of good players. (Bao Chou): I remember when we went to Xiamen for a competition. Back then, the ground wasn’t like this court. It was a mud court. When we played spectators climbed up the trees to watch us. (Bao Chou): The most handsome among us? You can say that it’s him. We always told him to pass us the girls that he rejected but he refused. [Laughs] (Jia Qiang): Sometimes we compete in local tournaments. We even travel overseas to participate in competitions. Losing or winning doesn’t matter as long as we have fun. After playing, we will head to the coffeeshop to drink, eat and hang out. (Da Jiao): Now we know how precious friendship is. (Jia Qiang): More so when we grow older. (Jia Qiang): There is a lot of body contact in basketball. So when we play, we are not very rough. We will give in to each other. (Da Jiao): We play to exercise not to win. At this age, I play slower. [Laughs] (Jia Qiang): He’s faster than me. He even snatches the ball! We are afraid that he will get a heart attack. (Bao Chou): Basketball is a friendly sport for us. When we perspire after playing that’s when we feel happiest. Our group of friends have been together for so long. We have been playing together since young. (Teck Ann): We are closer than brothers. (Geng Wen): Definitely closer than brothers. (Bao Chou): Playing basketball every week having fun with each other it’s really a good life. This is definitely a lifelong friendship.

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