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5/16/2018 5:12 pm  #1

Basketball Titans

Brad was your typical 20 year old. He was a student at Columbus State University going for a dual major in financial management and physics. While most people only saw his deep passion for basketball, he was also a complete geek when it came to either finances or science. His classmates saw him as a legend, showing up to labs wearing a sleeveless basketball jersey, shorts, nike high tops, long white athletic socks, a lab coat, and goggles rested atop his blond spiked hair.

This semester, Brad was taking Experimental Physics, where students had to pick a project and attempt to complete it. Most students chose the easy way out, deciding to pick a safe project such as building a trebuchet. Brad, on the hand, was a show off. He decided to construct a device that was able to shrink objects by changing the size of its atoms. By mid-March, after spring break during one of his late building sessions that lasted until early in the morning, Brad was ready to test his device. He grabbed a pen, and entered into the device "1/100". A beam of light shout out from the shrink ray, and the pen suddenly disappeared. Holding a magnifying glass, Brad was able to find the microscopic pen on the table. "YES!!!!" he screamed in the empty laboratory. He then reset the device and regrew the pen. Then, hoping to see if it worked on living creatures, he pulled out one of the guinea pigs that was in the laboratory. He shrunk it and used the magnifying glass to see that it was still moving, then regrowing it to put it back in its cage. Excited by his work, Brad decided to go test out the shrink ray more. With his device in hand, he ran into the hallway and then to the outside. Somebody's bike was on the bike rack, so he shrunk it to the size of a toy. After playing with it for a while, he eventually got bored and wanted to find something else to shrink, regrowing the bike back to its normal size. After walking around for a while in the cool, deserted night, he found a functioning Ohio National Guard helicopter that was on display for a month. "This will be freaking awesome to fly in," he thought. It was chained to the ground, but once he shrunk it to 1/500th of its original size he was able to pick it up and pocket it. Satisfied, he started to walk back to his dorm, relishing in the thoughts of being able to play with his new toys.

Once Brad got back home, he pulled out his new miniature helicopter from his pocket and sat it down on the floor. Then, he shrunk himself to be at the scale of the chopper. The world rapidly expanded as he and his clothes shrunk down an eighth of an inch, quite a far difference from his usual height of 6 foot 2. He climbed aboard the helicopter and started it up. Using the controls, he was able to lift it up into the air and fly it around his room. Brad looked out, and amused himself with the thoughts of how this would be the perspective of a fly. After sometime flying around, Brad landed the helicopter, grew himself to his normal height, and placed his new toy on his dresser. Then, the climbed into bed with a loud yawn.

The next morning, Brad awoke to the sun shining on his face. The alarm clock on his bedstand told that it was already 11:00, so he pushed himself out of bed and put on his clothes. After eating some cereal, he texted one of his basketball teammates to see if he wanted to shoot some hoops, which was what he typically did on Saturdays. However, Brad had a different idea for playing basketball with his buddy Jake: he wanted to have a microscopic scrimmage. So Brad got his phone, keys, basketball, along with his shrink ray and helicopter and headed out to the court.

Jake had already been shooting a couple of hoops by the time Brad got there. As their customary greeting, Brad and Jake did a couple of high-fives. Then, Brad told his buddy about the shrink ray. "Dude, you won't believe what I have. It's a device that can shrink people and things," exclaimed Brad. "Oh yeah. What did you do, spend all of your time watching sci-fi movies last night?" replied Jake. "No, watch this," and suddenly Brad shot the basketball that Jake had been holding. It shrunk to 1/500th of its size. "WHOA, MAN!!!" Jake cried. "Alright, he's my plan, bro. How about he play a miniature game of basketball?" asked Brad. "That sounds awesome, but where are we going to do it? And couldn't someone else come out here and shoot hoops and then step on us?" questions Jake. "Ah, you see that's where I got it," smiled Brad. "You know how they always saw that our sneakers are 'made to plat basketball in'? Why don't we play basketball in one of them?". After Jake stared at Brad in disbelief, he exclaimed, "Dude, our shoes reek with sweat." But Brad persisted until Jake relented, saying, "Fine. But we get to do my shoes". Brad shouted in joy. He then pulled out his helicopter while Jake took off his high tops. Then, after putting the shoes on the sideline, Brad shot Jake with the shrink ray, and then shot himself. Thankfully, the shrink ray landed right next to his shoes. By the time Brad was shrunk, Jake had his already miniature basketball. The two of them boarded the helicopter, flying of Jake's shoes. Just hovering over the shoes, Jake's and Brad's noses were filled with the rancid odor. "Man, do your feet stink!" Brad exclaimed. Then, the two descended.

The two students were in awe at the sight they were seeing. What typically would be seen as a piece of footwear to them was more like a cathedral capable of holding thousands of worshipers. Brad always knew Jake's feet stink, but at this miniature scale the smell overwhelmed the two. The helicopter landed by one of the walls of the shoe, in a dark patch. Brad and Jake jumped out and onto the floor of the shoe. With each step they took, sweat oozed out. "I knew I sweat, but I didn't knew I sweated this much!" said Jake. The two started to dribble the ball, passing it back in forth. Without any real hoops, they decided to just try to shoot the basketball at the shoe's wall above a certain height. Their miniature game was interrupted by what sounded like thunder. At first thinking it was about to rain, the two realized that it was instead giant footsteps. Two more pairs of footsteps could be heard, booming for what felt to be eternity. Then the bounce of a basketball could be heard, with shouts of familiar voices. "Dude, our teammates are playing ball up there!" shouted Jake. The bounce of a giant basketball could be heard, and then suddenly a loud boom was overtop and the shoe tilted to one side only to return to its upright position. Brad and Jake and been thrashed about the shoe, wondering what act of God did this to them. Brad realized that the giant basketball had hit the shoe that their were in. After playing more basketball, Brad and Jake heard their giant teammates leave the court. "Alright, I'm about ready to return to my normal size," Brad said. However, Jake wanted a few more minutes to play ball in his shoe, so Brad decided that he would regrow himself and then regrow Jake. After starting the helicopter, Brad ascended into the air and flew off to the shrink ray. He regrew himself to his normal height, and looked down into Jake's basketball shoe, seeing the movements of what looked like an insect. He had a giant smirk on his face; even though Brad was fairly tall, he always had to look up at Jake, who was 6 foot 6. Jake also had a much large shoe size than Brad, being a size 14 compared to his size 12. So Brad decided that he was going to play a prank on his tiny friend. "Hey, Jake. So I gotta say, your shoes look pretty nice. I think I might take them for myself. You wouldn't mind that, would you?" Brad asked. Jake looked up with intense fear. Then, when Brad picked him the shoes and started walking towards the bench, Jake began running to the end of the shoe. "Perfect," Brad thought. "Now I can actually put these on with him in there, as my toe won't reach." Brad set the Jake's shoes on the ground, and began to unlace his. Once he had his shoes off, he slide his other foot into the appropriate shoe. "Oh man Jake, your shoe feels nnnniiiiiiiiicccccceeeeeee," he said with a long draw. Then Brad slowly inserted his foot into the shoe Jake was in. Standing at the back of the shoe, Jake watched with horror as a goliath of a dirty white sock descended into the shoe. It continued to move forward, rapidly approaching him. Then, it stopped right before it got to Jake. "Phew, he has smaller feet than me," Jake said relieved. "Hey Jake, since you're not here to stop me, I think I'll actually take your shoes. Thanks Bro," boomed Brad. After walking around for a bit, he took of his shoe, laughing his head off. Then, after poking Jake, he grew his friend. Once Jake was at his normal height, he gave Brad a hard punch in the arm. Brad couldn't stop laughing, and eventually Jake realized that it was pretty funny too, joining in and smiling.


5/16/2018 5:29 pm  #2

Re: Basketball Titans

A couple of months after presenting his shrink ray, Brad was asked by many groups to commercialize his new invention. He didn't feel all that comfortable with doing so, as he didn't feel that his work was fully completed. However, his mind was changed when a particular group of investors reached out to him. It was a group trying to bring an NBA team to Columbus, Ohio. The investors were unable to procure land large enough for a new stadium, and instead had a different idea: shrinking the game and fans to be able to fit into a small space. Their idea was to have a miniature arena inside a basketball shoe to provide a unique experience for fans. When these investors asked Brad if they could use his technology, he gave them three conditions: first, he would have a major stake in the new team; second, he wanted the team to be called the Columbus Giants; third, he wanted his game-day basketball shoes to be used as the court. The investors at first balked at the first and third conditions. However, after realizing that they had no other options, they relented. Brad wanted his well-worn shoes to be used, as he envisioned an experience for the spectators that would let them know what real basketball players went through.

The design for the project had the arena of a scale of 100 feet equals half of an inch. This would leave plenty of room for both the court, seating, and concession stands. Fans would enter one of the building's doors, stand in line to go through security and have their tickets checked. Then they would board a revolving train that takes them into a dark tunnel where they would be shrunk. After that, they would exit into a giant dark room with a massive sneaker in the middle. The train would take the fans into the sneaker, where they would be dropped off and set free to explore the arena inside of the giant basketball shoe. This design was pitched to the NBA, who was astonished by its uniqueness. Almost immediately did the association green light the project and give Columbus its own team.

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