(photo @ sodahead)
As someone who played organized basketball in middle school, I can tell you that it is most definitely "serious business." When you're an 11 year old kid, you don't have the luxury of exaggerating and/or outright lying about the greatness of your athletic accomplishments; you have to prove it on the hardwood in front of your peers (and possibly any girls that may be watching).
Even though kids are expected to be hormonal and crazy at that age when it comes to competitive sports, parents can be just as bad, if not worse. I was very fortunate to have a dad/coach that stressed sportsmanship and being proud of how we played no matter what the outcome. These days, it seems that more and more children aren't as lucky.
On Friday, March 9 of 2012, a 6th grade boys basketball game had just concluded at the Holy Name School gymnasium in Springfield, Massachusetts. As the teams walked onto the court and lined up to shake hands, all hell broke lose, prompting this very bizarre series of 911 calls.
In case you think you misheard any of that, someone (that multiple people identified as an assistant coach for the losing team) went over to the winning team's coach, punched him a few times, and then bit off his ear.
Be prepared for a copyright lawsuit, sucka!
Timothy Forbes, the man with a hunger for retribution in the form of human flesh, was later disavowed by the the Catholic Youth Organization of ever having been an assistant coach, despite statements by multiple witnesses, the victim, and Forbes' own lawyer to the contrary.
Maybe all of those witnesses really did get it wrong. Maybe Forbes worked with the losing team in an unofficial capacity. But if he actually was a coach and the Catholic church to was just distancing themselves from him, that's pretty terrible. You'd figure that they would have at least just moved him to another team and pretended that the ear biting stuff didn't happen.
At least the Catholic Youth Organization's president, John Maloney, gave us one of the greatest reactions/statements about the entire situation that we could have asked for (emphasis mine):
"I think everyone who heard it couldn't believe it and it was certainly very devastating to the program to have something like this happen. We feel it hasn't happened before and we hope it will never happen again."
The possibility of prior incidents involving coaches getting their ears bitten off is something that you should probably be a bit more certain of, Mr. Maloney.
Who keeps leaving these on the scorer's table?
As far as Mr. Forbes is concerned, he may truly have had a moment of temporary insanity. After partaking of the Van Gogh special, Forbes quicky fled the scene. While my first instinct was to think that it was pretty weasley for him to run off like that after biting off another man's ear, it would have actually been much scarier (and downright creepy) if he was proud of himself enough to stick around and take credit for it.
Forbes finally did turn himself into police on Monday, though he pleaded not guilty to all charges. He is currently awaiting a hearing this week to determine if he would be considered a public threat if released on bail.
Actual mugshot @ masslive.com
In the meantime, his cell mate has most likely requested ear muffs