Thursday, June 21, 2012

Free Lee

Among SB's precious memorabilia is a photo of our rugby team circa 1996, which features a man who appears to be missing his kit.  By the time that I joined the CWB team he was long gone but apparently not forgotten.  Naked Man is returning to Hong Kong for a visit, as often is the case because no one seems able to leave this place entirely.  The old boys will gather at Carnegies to relive their wilder, younger days and catch up on stories.  Here is Naked Man's story:



Many moons ago the Hong Kong Sevens wasn't quite the major commercial success that is is today; it was more home grown yet still a spectacle that featured rugby's greatest sevens teams.  During the 1996 tournament, Naked Man and his friends were invited to an event featuring the All Blacks.  As the All Blacks were performing their famous Haka, a passport slipped from the pocket of one of the warriors and fell to the ground.  Later, a woman named Lee found the passport and went into a fit of rapture befitting the momentous occasion.  She and Naked Man's other female friends were avid jersey collectors and fell into a discussion of how to return the passport in a manner that would provide the greatest exposure to the All Black team.  Meanwhile a member of the team management returned to the event to search for the missing passport.  Some of Naked Man's group thought it would be amusing to inform him that the passport was being held for ransom by a crazed fan.  Apparently the member of management had been born with a genetic deformity that rendered him devoid of all humor because he immediately threatened arrests, lawsuits, and worst of all, banishment from Sevens, when Lee returned the passport to him.

At the Sevens that year, several sympathetic groups of people had posted flyers on the wall with "Free Lee" written across the top.  Naked Man remembers seeing the flyers as he was queued for beer.  He even remembers some of the Sevens competitions.  He does not, however, remember how he ended up with a "Free Lee" tattoo on his buttocks.

And that is the story of Naked Man.  I am sure that there is a moral to this story.

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