Saturday, July 31, 2010

Anything for a story

Last Sunday afternoon, I had a soccer game.

And, to be honest, I wasn’t entirely confident in how I would play. I hadn’t really eaten anything substantial that day, I didn’t drink as much water before our game as I’d have liked to, I drank quite a bit the night before and I didn’t get enough sleep. I didn’t have very high expectations. And they only dropped lower when I got to the field and found out that we only had 11 girls: no substitutes.

There’s nothing like knowing that you won’t get a water break to really fire you up.
The girl who normally plays sweeper – which is the very last defender back – wasn’t able to play last Sunday, so I stepped in to fill the position. My teammates always think that I’m the right person to play there when she’s missing, but I’m not entirely crazy about that position. Mostly because I either play really good or really bad when I’m there and, well, it is sort of crucial that, as the last line of defense, you don’t suck.

And then the referee comes over and OF COURSE it is one of Colin’s best friends. And when the other team takes the field, who is out there? Colin’s little sister. Seriously, Universe. That is rude. The Athlete is leaving and I’m mildly hung over and playing a position that I’m not confident at and you’re going to send a few ghosts from my past to witness this debacle? Really? Ugh.

The game begins and, lo and behold, I am not a disaster! I am actually quite good. I’m tired but I am not exhausted. I am hot but not overheating. I’m not sweating out vodka. And I’m remembering why I occasionally like playing stopper. Because, when you play that position right, you can make the forwards on the other team look stupid. Which is pretty much the greatest thing ever.

Once we get to the second half, I am feeling quite great about myself. Why did I ever think that I could be any less than COMPLETELY AWESOME? Why don’t I play this position every week so that I can make, like, every single girl in the league look and feel stupid? Why haven’t I been recruited to play for the L.A. Galaxy in the absence of my boyfriend David Beckham?

There’s maybe 10 minutes left in the game (we’re winning, 3-0) and the other team kicks the ball out of bounds. I’m the closest one to the ball, so I step off of the field, grab the ball and prepare to take the throw in.

I should mention that I hadn’t been out to that sideline at all up until that point in the game. So I didn’t quite realize that the grass was wet. Really wet.

I hold the ball in my hands, behind my head. I take a couple of steps to get started. I plant my feet and, just as I’m pulling the ball over my head and about to release it, the grass rips out from under my feet. My legs go straight up into the air. I fall onto my back with a dramatic thud. A really loud, really dramatic thud. The ball flies out of my hand. And I’m lying on my back, starting up at the sky. And at the linesman, who is standing over me and trying not to laugh.

Which was nice of him, actually. Because everyone else was definitely not trying not to laugh. My teammates are laughing. My opponents are laughing. The spectators are laughing. And so I, in turn, start laughing. And roll over onto my stomach so that I can hide my face in the (muddy) grass for a moment.
I got myself up, brushed myself off, ignored my swampy ass and shook off the embarrassment.

It was definitely the most humiliating moment I’ve had on the soccer field in a long, long time. Perhaps ever.

But I completely kicked ass for the rest of the game. And I’ve been amusing myself by telling anyone and everyone the story.

So I’ll take it.

Shameless, boys and girls. I am shameless.


my life is brilliant said...

LOVE it! Good for you.

You freakin' rock, whether you're kicking ass or busting ass. ;)

Mrs. Architect said...

MLIB put it perfectly in her last sentence!! :o)

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