I post a picture on social media every single day and have done so for almost eight years. Thursday night I posted a picture of my feet and the floor at the Vivint Smart Home Arena where the Utah Jazz play. From where I sat the only thing separating me from the incredibly talented multi-millionaires was about ten feet.
I was treated like royalty.
This is not the way I'm treated normally when the Jazz pay home games. In fact, when I watch them play it's on my TV at home. The court-side tickets are not mine, but Jeff's, my friend. He and I met almost thirty-three years ago in Provo, Utah as we left our families behind and embarked on an adventure that would change our lives. There were six of us, Jeff, Brian, Mark, Mike, Linda, and me. Six excited and scared people who have been bound by our friendships ever since.
We've kept in touch through the years. We all married, had kids, and now many of those kids are marrying and having kids of their own. Jeff's had season Jazz tickets for years and every once in a while, he invites me and others to spend a night with him, being well-fed, and (if the Jazz win...) well-entertained.
Naturally, I'd love to sit every game in those seats, but I know that's not the point. Jeff is the kind of person who gives up seats he's spent good money on for others to enjoy, and because he's such an amazing person, he's got a lot of friends.
After the game ended (the Jazz smoked the Rockets, by the way...) I thought about the experience I had that night. Yes, the game was fun and the way people treated us was beyond exceptional, but what I enjoyed the most wasn't the pre-game meal with amazing food, or sitting next to Jerry Sloan's party in the lounge, or being so close to the players during the game that I could have had a conversation with them or tell the referees what I really thought of that Rudy Gobert's technical foul call.
No, the best part of the night was spending time with Jeff and two other friends we met in a small Scandinavian country all those years ago. And we don't need court-side ticket for that.
But, boy are they fun!