In Chapter 2, how does the author's description of the center foreshadow trouble in Hoops?

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dymatsuoka eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In his description of the Center, the author mentions almost casually that, among the miscellaneous "stuff" in the office, there is "a rusty .32 with a broken handle that (the boys are) always threatening each other with".  This mention foreshadows trouble when, two pages later, Lonnie goes into a rage out of all proportion to its provacation, and, while using the .32 threateningly, is injured when the old gun discharges in his hands.

The author describes the Center as "(not) much, but it (is their) hangout".  The ceiling is so low that the boys have to flatten their basketball shots in order to make it into the hoops; "you could always tell a guy that had learned his ball in the Center, because they all had this line-drive jumper".  The author says that there are four keys to the office, which are in the possession of Lonnie, Paul, Ox, and Breeze.  In the office there are "records, magazines, extra sneakers", and the .32 with the rusty handle.  There is also a parakeet, and a working telephone.

When Paul sees Cal, who has gone missing for a few days with the team's uniforms, he reacts with a fury that surprises even himself.  He goes after Cal with the gun, then sustains his injury and is subdued.  This incident, which was foreshadowed in the description of the stuff stashed in the Center office, in itself foreshadows more trouble to come, as, in his violent world, Paul must come to grips with why his relationship with Cal affects him so much (Chapter 2). 



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