What a great way to spend a Saturday morning in July: I’m sitting in my car with rain cascading on the roof, lightning skittering all over the sky, and thunder sockin’ it to the atmosphere with such force that I feel a rumbling in my bum.
I’m staring through the windshield at acres of not-supposed-to-be-empty soccer fields. There’s supposed to be a tournament going on, but the pitches are filled with puddles, not players. No. 5 son (age 13) and I stumbled out of bed at 7 a.m. on this Saturday morning in July and drove almost an hour to be right on time for. . .this.
Actually, No. 5’s team managed to start playing just before the weather did. Here’s where the story gets really sad: When the refs whistled things to a stop, No. 5’s team was ahead, 3-1.
You might ask “What’s so ‘really sad’ about that?” Listen up: No. 5’s team, the Lions, is winless. For the entire season. In fact, they’ve rarely scored. Whereas their opponents “put it in the old onion bag” with disheartening regularity. When the deficits reach half-a-dozen goals or so, No. 5 and his mates visibly lose interest – they go from Lions to Li-yawns.
(I know what you’re thinking: With this lack of success, I must be coaching the Lions. I admit I’m not much of a soccer coach – all my kids will loudly and enthusiastically admit it too. That’s why I limited myself to only coaching 6- or 7-year olds, for whom the most important element of soccer is the post-game treat. But the Lions’ lack of success isn’t my handiwork. My only contribution to their season of discontent has been forgetting it was my turn to bring the post-game treat, which still remain pretty important to 12 and 13 year olds.)