Are You Sure We're Playing Soccer?

For decades I have eschewed video cameras. Remember when our parents would drag out the old reel to reel camera, set up the collapsible screen and make everyone watch pictures of them as children, or on vacation in Mexico, or at some special party. Well, I don't cuz my parents never had a camera, THANK GOODNESS, but have heard nary a many horror story of someone being stuck all night somewhere watching old movies. Seriously, who wants to watch old films of themselves? I have seen so many parents filming WHOLE games, and not one but all of them! My high school graduation was videotaped in its entirety by several parents. I found it boring enough the first time to never want to go to another one much less watch it again. I, personally, would much rather flip through a photo album.

Recently, though, I have found a use for the videocamera. Baby's soccer games are quite interesting. He rarely pays attention to the ball. He's good for about a quarter of the game, the rest of the time he's on the field playing a different game.

One week it had quit raining minutes before his game. His field was nice and wet. And in a few bare patches there was DIRT! I don't know a boy who isn't attracted to dirt. I'd be a little worried if the boy was clean for more than 10 minutes, under the age of 10, and not at church/wedding/pictures/etc. As he was positioned perfectly over the dirt spot he noticed that if he kicked it just right with his cleats he could make a nice, pliable dirt clod! As he picked up the dirt clod he studied that thing like a scientist with an alien amoeba. He was useless for the rest of the game! I have never ever seen anyone so interested in one dirt clod.

When Baby was three we were visiting cousins for Thanksgiving. They only had girls at the time. By the second day Baby was tearing pieces of paper into triangularish shapes and shooting them at things. Olaf had to go to Walmart and buy him a gun. The desire to shoot things, imaginary or not, has never left the child. Several times on the soccer field he will be bored and start holding his hands out in the rifle shooting position, not the pistol position that most kids demonstrate on a regular basis, but the rifle shooting position. This entails putting one of his whole arms out, cocking his head to the side, closing one eye, and pulling the trigger with his other arm closer to the body. When in shooting mode at the soccer games he takes to shooting the kids on the other team. Thank goodness our town is red-necked enough that no one takes offense to the 'guns' on the field. Thank goodnes no one takes their children away in disgust or even approaches me to remark on my failings as a mother. I get enough phone calls as it is!

The most common occurrence is his attacks on the members of the other team. After playing for a while he gets bored kicking the ball and wants to take his aggression out on the other team members. He'll put his arm around them and try to put them in a headlock. Usually the other kid can wrestle away before it gets anywhere near the headlock position. He will also be running alongside someone and stick his foot out in an effort to trip the other teammate. He will even 'bump into' the other kids, trying to see if he's tough enough to knock anyone down. At least he's not that tough yet!

I'm seriously thinking of putting him in football next year. That seems to fit his tendencies better. Unfortunately he is afraid of the ball. He can handle kicking it as long as no one big is near. But when you throw a ball at the kid he cringes! Poor kid, maybe sports isn't for him after all.

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