When Andrew played soccer in the fall, he had a very good season. His coach was awesome, and the parents on our team were great too. We saw some behavior on the other teams that was not so admirable, but nothing really remarkable until the last game of the season.
It was the championship game; the winning team would be the division champions for Andrew's age group (9 yr olds - 11 yr olds) for our very small town. Clearly, this was serious business. Scholarships, money, and careers were riding on this game.
But you wouldn't know it from the way some people were acting. Most notably, two of the coaches on the opposing team. That's right; two grown men coaching the same team were arguing. For some reason, there was friction from the very beginning. I never caught the whole story. But at some point, the two coaches began giving opposite instructions to a child. Tensions were getting high at this time; the game was nearly over and it was tied.
And then, one of the arguing coaches began yelling at the other coach's wife.
And I said to John, "Oh, it's on."
And it was on. Like donkey kong.
The two coaches got in each others' faces and began screaming. Meanwhile, the kids were still playing soccer, and their team even scored a goal in the middle of all this.
I thought it shouldn't count because clearly our kids were distracted by their moronic coaches, but nobody cared what I thought.
Anyway, the best part of all of this was the comment from the mother of one of our players. They are relatively new to this country and I'm not sure where they are originally from, but she was quite shocked by the fight and said in a very thick accent that sounded possibly German,
"Vat is this REDNECKISH behavyah??"
And I died.
Anyway, the coach who started the argument and yelled at the other guy's wife was ejected from the game, kicked out of the complex, and permanently banned from coaching for our rec league. The other coach was just ejected from the game.
It was a great example of what NOT to do, and how NOT to act around impressionable children. We talked about it at length to our kids on the way home.
Their team won, but our team, kids, parents & coaches were the real winners. Because we maintained our character....and that's what it should be all about.
Soccer season starts again soon, probably bringing with it more lessons in character, both good and bad.
And John and I still walk around saying "Vat is this REDNECKISH behavyah??" all.the.time.