Okay, so there's this one mom that I just can't sit beside during the game. Here's why:
"Ok, now push up. Push up! I said push up! Ok, now come back. The ball's coming to you. Ok, now get the ball. Get the ball. GET THE BALL!!!! Huff, I told you to get the ball. Didn't you see the ball? You gotta go to the ball. Now, here it comes again. Go to the ball. Good, now pass it to Natalie. Pass it to Natalie! Huff! I said to pass it to Natalie. Did you not hear me say to pass it to Natalie? Pay attention! Here's comes the ball. Go to the ball..."
Holy Cow, Annoying Mom! Your daughter has only been playing soccer since she was six years old. She is a starter on a competitive team. I think she knows how to play the game without you moving her around like she's a pawn on a chess board. You are annoying me. I can only imagine how your daughter feels. In other words, shut up already!!!
Parents like her are just about as bad as the ones who complain about every single call. Now I've seen some bad referee calls. And, I must admit, I have made a comment or two. (Like the time I yelled that he should just go put on the other team's jersey colors. But that was only after an hour of blatantly one-sided calls. And it was just the one time. I swear.) But I also have to admit that most referees are way more knowledgeable about the game than I will ever be, so I try to keep my mouth shut. That way I don't reveal my stupidity more than absolutely necessary.
I learned long ago to limit my outbursts to things like, "Go team!" or "Good Hustle!" or "Don't give up. You can do it!"
So I'm not sure what happened last weekend. Perhaps my subconscious decided I had a right to a sideline opinion after nearly a decade of soccer mommming. Maybe I've just been sitting a little too close to Annoying Mom and she's rubbing off. I don't know.
It was beautiful day, perfect for playing soccer. Or watching it. Frank was having a great game. He was hustling, making good passes, keeping his head in the game. There was just this one little problem. I noticed it and, for some reason still yet to be determined, decided to point it out to him.
"Frank, push up."
"Frank! Move up!"
"Frank!! You are a forward! Move Up!"
He turns to me, finally, and speaks to me very patiently, as if he's the adult and I'm the child.
"Mom, I'm mid-field."
"Oh, well then, feel free to continue ignoring me. And Good Job!"
He shakes his head and goes back to his good job.
How does this happen? I'm usually pretty good about keeping my oh-so-brilliant coaching tips to myself and the one time I offer something, I get schooled by my 11 year old. In front of everyone. While Annoying Mom rants and raves game after game after game and no one ever calls her on it.
Embarrassed, I glance around. I'm standing by myself, about 10 feet from the nearest parent. This is good. Hopefully no one heard my blunder. On the other hand, I caught a sudden glimpse of what it must feel like to be the one mom no one wants to sit beside.
I walk over to the other parents and plop down in the cool grass. It's a beautiful day for soccer.