46 lines, 13 rules

46 lines.

13 rules.

Two words. “Basket Ball.”

And now, one price: 4.3 Million Dollars.

Dr. James Naismith’s original rules of basketball. Two pieces of paper that any basketball fan would love to see.
Two pieces of paper that, to quote the illustrious Indiana Jones, SHOULD BE IN A MUSEUM. Or, at the least, featured in the abomination that most call the Basketball Hall of Fame.

$4.3 Million.

To think, this aged typewritten document, pinned to the wall of a YMCA 119 years ago, scribbled on by Dr. Naismith himself and left unframed for its entire existence – unframed and equally unprotected! – gave birth to the game I love. A billion dollar industry. A sport played worldwide. A defining point in modern American culture.

$4.3 Million.

What a number.

And get this: it was purchased by a couple of U of K donors. Not by a former or current professional basketball player or coach – people who owe their entire fortunes to those two sheets of paper.

You can’t tell me someone like Michael Jordan or Shaquille O’Neal wasn’t interested. Because I know one thing. If I was a billionaire, I’d be right there. I’d have paid $4.3 Million.

For 46 lines? 13 rules? For the seed that created my favorite distraction?

Hell. I’d have paid a lot more.

This was lovingly handwritten on December 10th, 2010