It was a day like any other. Sitting at the kitchen table, I was sipping my customary cup of tea looking out at the garden when my eye was drawn to something strange outside. At first I couldn't quite put my finger on it but I knew that something was not quite right. Then I saw it - the sad remnants of the basketball net hanging forlornly from the basketball hoop.
I first noticed that the net had been damaged after the Great Hail Storm of early 2010 but that didn't explain the current sorry state of the net. Cautiously, I ventured outside to see if the culprit had left any clues but the clues were few and far between - no debris on the ground, no footprints, no fingerprints. Damn they were good. Determined to get to the bottom of things I drew up a list of suspects.
Suspect No.1 - 'Boom Boom' Bella so-called because of her fiery temper. Height 120cm. Motive: known to blame the hoop for her own shortcomings. Overheard to say, 'the hoop is too high' and 'the net keeps getting in the way'.Opportunity: Plenty (but lack of height a disadvantage).
Suspect No.2 - 'Happy-Go-Lucky' Henry. Height 115cm. Motive: Unclear - never shown any real interest in the hoop. Opportunity: Small, rarely unsupervised.
Suspect No.3 - 'Towering' Tom. Height 5' 11". Motive: Unclear - purchaser of said hoop. Opportunity: Plenty (with height on his side).
The more I studied my list of suspects the less likely they seemed to fit the bill. The gradual nature of the disappearance seemed to rule them out for starters. How could I not notice members of my own household systematically sabaotaging sports equipment in my own front yard? I needed to sleep on it. Perhaps tomorrow I would see things in a different light.