Football is over, finally. Last night was the absolute last event of the season, T1’s team dinner. All of the players and coaches got together at a local version of Buffalo Wild Wings- lots of televisions playing sports, all the servers in sports jerseys, wings, burgers and beer type of place- to have dinner and hand out awards.
It wasn’t really the type of event the parents would attend, but I also wasn’t going to drop him off, drive home and then turn right around and leave to pick him up again, so while they all had dinner and talked I sat at the bar.
After an hour and a half or so, after they had consumed a bunch of chicken wings and the coaches had given speeches and they all had ice cream Sundays (because they still only 13 after all) I could tell the event was breaking up. I went over to the server station and flagged down one of the waiters who was taking care of the team.
“Excuse me,” I said to the kid. He had shoulder length hair, big glasses and was wearing a Redskins jersey. He was probably 22. “Could you help me? My kid is over there and I want to pay his bill. He’s the one second from the end who looks like Will Smith.”
The waiter looked at me a little funny, looked down at the table and broke up laughing.
T1 really does look like Will Smith. He’s actually a dead ringer for Jaden Smith, Will’s son. I sometimes wonder what people who see us out together think because I look like your average, run of the mill white guy. We actually get a lot of variations on what happened next.
The waiter turned to a waitress standing next to him and said,” This man’s kid is on the team and he wants to pay his bill. The kid there that looks like Will Smith.”
As soon as it was out of his mouth, he froze. I guess he suddenly had the thought that maybe, possibly, out of context, what he had said could be construed as a little racist. As if all black kids look like rapper turned actors, or something.
“Oh!” he yelped, “Sorry! I mean, he does look like Will Smith. Not that all…I mean…sorry.”
“It’s okay,” I grinned. “I said it first.”
“Yeah!” he said, looking at the waitress with relief on his face. “He said it first.”
“Anyway,” I said, “I’m over at the bar.”
“Okay,” said the waiter, “thank you.”
I turned to go back and sit down.
“Holy shit,” I heard the waitress say, “that kid really does look like Will Smith.”