How’s the air up there?

I’ve never considered myself a tall man.  If I take a deep breath and stretch the slouch away, then I am just shy of 6′ in the morning.  So 5’11” the rest of the time. Put on a normal pair of shoes and I make the magical cut without needing an inversion table and maybe a torture rack.  Would have liked to have been a few inches taller but hey, with short sh!ts for parents (sorry Mom & Dad) it was not to be and I have come to terms with what I managed before the pituitary gland shut off.  I’ve been around a few of our South African rugby players and I have an uncle in the 6’4 range but holy crap I have never seen a person as tall as the dude I saw last night.  He was having dinner at the local Fishmonger here in Rosebank JHB and sat at the table a few metres away.  His knees extended above the top of the table and he looked like he would have to shop at Bigger & Much Much Taller…

Hasheem ThabeetTurns out he is Hasheen Thabeet, the tallest current player in the NBA out here on an annual Basketball without Borders Africa camp.

Now I have never had any interest in basketball beyond what the average person not living in America would have, but I have always known that basketball players are meant to be tall.

Holy Hell… he redefines the term.  Every time he got up to move around (and duck the hanging ceiling lights) everyone would stare…  and not that embarrassed stare… nope, the stare that you simply cannot help yourself.  My wife tapped away on her smartphone trying to figure out who it could be and later that night we managed to spot a photo with him in it – thanks to that distinctive light spot on the back of his head to make it easier to confirm who it was.  We watched him walk past a shop front and with a few guesstimates we figured him to be around 7’4ish… Turns out he is 7’3 (2.21m).  I then ran around measuring our doorways and he’d have to bend through most of our house.

Read up a little more about him and unfortunately the articles seem to indicate that he has not had the greatest NBA career so maybe extreme height is not as much of a requirement for basketball as I thought, but he is still one helluva big guy.

And I feel damn short now.



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