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Inspirational Reads

And Father of the Year Goes To...

May 18, 2011

So, on Monday, I told you about how I sucked it up and started coaching my little boy's soccer team. For most of the year, only nine of the ten kids on the team have shown up to play. The tenth happens to be a classmate of my son's, so I knew that he was in Nicaragua. I thought they were there for missionary work (and they might have been), but it turns out that the kid's mom is doing research on various strains of rotavirus, and there's something unique about the population in Nicaragua that makes the work interesting.

Because nothing screams "interest" like little kids shitting themselves days and nights.

I learned all this on the first night that they were back and at soccer practice. After practice was over, this guy kept talking and talking and talking and talking to me. I just wanted to get to Wendy's so I could buy the kids (and, perhaps, myself) a Frosty. hour after practice was over...I was on my quest for the Frostys.

Since the Easter holiday fell in the middle of the soccer schedule, they did not have any games that weekend but resumed the following weekend. However, there was an event at the school where the fields are, and so the Saturday games got moved to Sunday, and some of the older kids' leagues were played on Friday night. Stick with me here; this is backstory.

Unfortunately, since I'm the coach, my phone number is listed as the contact. This means that any of the parents can call me. So, Sunday morning before the game, I'm slumbering away. My wife was out of town, so I had stayed up late the night before...reading...and...not...playing video games.

The phone rings, and it's this guy from the soccer team, who spent half the season in Nicaragua. Worse, it's not even 9:00 yet! You can imagine my frame of mind at the time when my daughter brought me the phone.

The guy was calling me to tell me that his son wouldn't be at the game that day. The game that wasn't being played until 1:00 in the afternoon. Color me unamused, dude; this is news that could have waited until at least eleven o'clock. The reason why his son wouldn't be playing? The little guy broke his arm.

I reacted appropriately. "Oh no! That's terrible! I hope he's going to be alright! Is he feeling okay?"

Now, at this point, right here, they guy should have said "Yeah, he's good. He's a little trooper. He'll soldier on through." Things would have been cool.

Instead, this guy proceeds to tell me the story of how his son broke his arm. Turns out, his older daughter had a game on Friday night, so while she was playing, this guy and his son were messing around on one of the other practice fields. His son was playing goalie, and his was kicking the ball at him.

I think you can see where this is going.

Apparently, this guy drilled kicked the ball so hard so that it hit his son with the force of a meteor striking the Earth in such a manner that he just happened to break two bones in his wrist.


And then the guy laughed. Like, "Heh heh. Isn't that just the darnedest thing?"

I'm still like Buh? Maybe I didn't hear this correctly. I've had...a few hours sleep...since I was up late...reading...and...not...playing video games...and my head is a little foggy. Did this guy just call me up and tell me that he broke his son's arm by kicking a soccer ball at him? And then try to laugh it off?

Why, yes. Yes, he did.

Now, I played goalie. I've had the ball drilled at me where I'm pretty sure a sonic boom accompanied the shot. I've had the ball hit me so hard it hurt and I wanted to fall on the ground like the pansy-ass that I am, and bawl my eyes out. Never, however, have I ever broken a fucking bone in my wrist, arm, ribcage or anywhere else from a soccer ball hitting me. Those things have give to them! How the hell hard do you have to kick a ball--at your own six-year-old son--to break not just one but two fucking bones in his wrist?

That's not the best part of it, though. Apparently, when the ball connected with the son's arm, the son fell to the ground screaming in agony. And what does his dad do? Picks him up, ignores the kid's cries of pain, and watches the rest of his daughter's game. The whole time--according to the story--the kid is whimpering in pain. They go home. They eat dinner. They go to bed. Finally, the next day, after the kid gets up and complains about the wrist still hurting, they go to Urgent Care for x-rays.

Jesus Christ, dude, at least Darth Vader tossed Palpatine down the shaft after a couple of seconds of the blue lightning. You let your kid suffer for twelve hours or so.

And this guy just chuckles about it. Heh heh. Well, what do you know?

At this point, I've kind of tuned him out. I really don't want to listen to this guy chat me up. So, after giving me the rundown of his son's injury, he then begins to talk soccer strategy with me, since hr won't be at the game. Because, you know, I haven't handled the team for the first six weeks of the year.

Insert annoyed eyeroll here...

There are two kids on the team, David and Michael, who are very, very good players. Michael even has slide tackling down almost perfectly, but this guy wanted me to stop him from doing that. He shouldn't be doing that in this league, Mr. Smasher of Wrists tells me. My response was, "The kid has a talent. I'm not going to tell him not to use it."

He then went and lectured me on not letting David and Michael play in the game together at the same time. So, at this point, I was already confused, pissed off and a little bit perplexed by this conversation. And I was thinking, "Wait, you want me to not use my two best players in order the games?" As he was rambling on, I was thinking about anything else. Finally, there was a pause and I finished the conversation with "Well, I should get the kids their breakfast. Sorry about your son's arm. Don't worry about bringing him to practice for a couple of weeks. Bye."

Sweet Jesus. The only good thing, though, was that I suddenly didn't feel so bad about yelling at my kids to clean their rooms. I might get annoyed and frustrated with them, but I've never broken any bones in their arms. Or anywhere else, for that matter.

Perhaps I might just win that Father of the Year trophy yet!


Pearl said...

Oh, my, but you are far kinder than I am.

I would have been hard-pressed to be civil to someone who showed up at the last minute and purported to tell me how to do something I'd been doing already for months.

And who kicks a ball that hard at a little kid???


Wynn said...

That picture of the dude with the baby has the potential of being the best picture ever, if the baby wasn't on it's very obvious way to crying really, really hard. Because even if I'm not a fan of kids, I don't want them to be sad.

And also, dude, if I broke my kid's arm, I wouldn't tell anyone. ANYONE. Only if they asked, ya know. But tell? No.

BeckEye said...

This guy is a douchebag. And an enigma. But mostly a douchebag. But still an enigma because he's A) the type of guy who probably kicks balls really hard at his son to make him "manly" and help "build character" and teach him to "WIN, DAMMIT!" but he's also B) the type of guy who whines to coaches that "everyone should get a turn" ostensibly because "the good kids make the kids who suck feel bad about themselves." Weird.

Wow, that was awkward said...

There are a lot of reasons why you should have never answered that phone call.

Scope said...

I'm sure it was a fluke shot with the kids wrists turned funny or something.

At least that's the story for Children and Family Services if they start asking pesky questions.