Toronto’s Spanish-born point guard, Jose Calderon, is a very good shooter, whether it be from the free throw stripe, the field, or behind the arc. I know that because I had him on my fantasy basketball team one season. I think I dropped, like, Rasho Nesterovic for him. He is also part owner of a hog farm in Spain, which is something I did not learn from fantasy basketball. How would you even quantify that? “Hog farms owned” is not a useful basketball stat.
In an interview with HOOP MAGAZINE, Calderon is quick to point out that he’s not a hog farmer, per se; he’s one of several people who owns the farm and uses it to make Spanish ham, or pata negra, which Calderon says is the world’s best ham. And what makes it the world’s best? Calderon says it’s the diet, which is surprisingly not a euphemism for “choking the pig out with massive amounts of hormones.”
Calderon: Where I’m from is where the best ham is. I thought it would be a good thing to bring the ham here to Canada and to the U.S.
HOOP: What’s different about the ham in Spain?
Calderon:Well, the pigs there only eat walnuts, so everything is organic. It’s much better.
The problem, as ESPN THE MAGAZINE reports, is that pata negra has actually been banned in the United States for quite some time, owing to health concerns or something. But one producer was allowed to start importing it last December, and you know where this one is going:
In December, though, the U.S. dropped the ban for one producer, and now Calderón can find his cherished dish in some restaurants on the road. His game hasn’t been the same since.
To be fair, he was improving even before man and ham were reunited. He was a solid backup to T.J. Ford, the guard who was supposed to render Calderón irrelevant after joining the Raptors, in 2006. When Ford injured his neck last Dec. 11, Calderón was ready to move into the starting lineup. He played so well that he immediately drew some All-Star buzz. “Little did we know José would turn into a starting-caliber guard,” says GM Bryan Colangelo.
And here’s some welcome news: Calderón has heard that pata negra will soon be allowed into Canada. That bit of information should make foes sweat like pigs.
Like pigs! Ho ho ho! Wait, do pigs even sweat? I never think of them as sweaty. I think of them as, y’know, “covered in mud and sh*t.” Which I suppose is worse than sweating, but not really a totally apt basketball analogy.
So the pigs eat the acorns, the Jose eats the pigs, the… wait, nothing eats the Jose. There’s no circle of life. Damn it, Disney.