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’18 Team Missouri: Larry Hughes (I’m a Pin Head)

Hughes, Larry_BocceThis is the second guest blog post by Unified Partner Larry Hughes on the bocce team attending the 2018 USA Games. For more blog posts from Team Missouri delegates, visit

I always thought that if someone called me a pin head, that it was an insult. I never really thought about what exactly defines a pin head. I guess it could be someone with a really small head, and therefore a really small brain, so then not likely to be very smart.

But now that I am here at the National Games, it has taken on a whole new meaning. A craze actually. Maybe more like a frenzy for some.

All of the team members earned, mostly as an incentive for fundraising, Team “Mo Magic” Missouri pins. And the other teams for all the other states that are here also have pins too. So as a way to fill idle time and meet people, you trade pins. Simple enough – but for some of us, it’s super addictive. Trying to get a pin from every state, because you have to have the whole collection, right? And just when you figure out this whole swapping and trading ritual, someone throws something unexpected at you. Some states have more than one pin! Oh man, like it isn’t hard enough to get 49 other states, now you have to worry about whether you have BOTH Florida pins – the one with an alligator and the other with the palm trees. Or California, which is really two teams, one north and another south.

So every time you see someone from another state, they get circled like a pool of sharks, “You got a Missouri pin yet?” No – awesome. Yes – bummer.

And then there a sport specific pins. We have a very limited number of Bocce team pins… so what’s good enough to give up one of those highly coveted beauties???

So maybe there should be some kind of therapy for this… Hi. My name is Larry. And I’m a pin head… where you from? Got any pins to trade?