Darby Collins is a fifth-grader from Chicago. He loves the NBA. In fact, he loves basketball so much that he has patterned most of his life after his favorite players, from permanent marker neck tattoos to cutting sub-par hip-hop albums in his bedroom to lots and lots of Hanes.

After the extended lockout, Collins was itching to jump on the first thing that came out of this shortened NBA season. Turns out it is the shortened season itself that Darby will emulate, as he has made a goal to attend only 66 days of school this year.

“Young Mr. Darby has learned plenty from this lockout,” said Robert Barry, the principal at Collins’ school. “He has asked if we have an exchange program with Europe, what percentage of the school’s ‘revenue’ is given back to students and if the kickball league has a salary cap. My guess is that he’s trying to arrange a Miami-type situation for himself on the playground.

“One might consider basketball players a poor choice to emulate, but really, Darby could have gone even farther off course imitating some of today’s golfers.”

Just as many NBA players pay fines that ultimately go to charity for their indiscretions, young Collins proudly donates his allowance every time Mrs. Collins feels he has crossed the line. Skipping out on half the school year, however, is sure to raise a few more eyebrows.

“Oh, we’d already reached the breaking point,” said Kathy Collins, Darby’s mother. “This headband phase is out-of-control. It’s on in the tub, in church and for school pictures! And trust me, you don’t want to be the one who picks up the phone to find a lunch lady screaming that your son is ‘making it rain’ with milk tokens.”

Mom has an ace up her sleeve, though: “I’m gonna tell him he has to go to school on Christmas.”

By Dan Bradley

Bandwagon Dan