When the girls were really little and all three of them were still in daycare all day, I used to tell Mom that when they get into school we’re not over scheduling them. They aren’t going to have something going on every night and all day on the weekends. Too many times I’d sit there and listen to parents with kids older than ours talk about how they had some activity every night and then soccer all day on Saturday. And nobody wants to be at a soccer game on a Saturday. Ever. Saturday and Sunday afternoons in the fall are already sacred and I’m not going to let some European socialist endeavor soil them. That would be like cheering for the Hessians when General Washington crossed the Delaware.
Anyway, I came to a realization however. If we don’t sign the girls up for some things, then they won’t really know if they like it. They’ve been in dance and gymnastics since Obama was just some crazy Bolshevik in the Illinois senate who liked to vote “present” instead of taking a stand. But not really anything else.
So we signed them up for softball this spring. And I signed Rye and Kinz up for a Saturday morning basketball camp. First hoops practice was this morning. Ten kids between 7-10. Four girls. One little girl wanted no part of the camp until she saw Kinsey in there. You could really sense the frustration her Mom was feeling too. I could see that they had been having the same conversation all week about how she’d like basketball if she tried it. How there would be other girls her age in there. How it was only 45 minutes long. But her Mom was still on the verge of pulling the rip cord on the kid and just heaving her into the gym and sprinting in the other direction. Hey, we’ve all had our hand on the pin to that grenade one time or another. Sometimes we pull it and sometimes you get saved. Like North Carolina when Fred Brown passed the ball to James Worthy in the ’83 NCAA Finals.
“Mom, I don’t want to go…hey that’s Kinsey. She goes to my school. Remember I went to her birthday party last year. Okay, bye.”
It was a fairly non-eventful deal for me however. Although it was interesting watching them do some things. Kinz really seem to enjoy it and took very seriously her defensive stance and hand placement for shooting the ball. And saying Rye was a little strong with her shots is like saying that woman from “What Not to Wear” is kind of annoying.
Not as annoying as the parents who are telling me that, “wow, Riley is in 4th grade. Hmm, it might be too late to get her involved in basketball and way too late for softball. Most girls have been playing since they were 5. Why did you wait so long?”
Really? Too late? She’s 10. I didn’t realize that a full ride scholarship was the goal here. Not that I’d mind if that happened. But damn, she’s a kid. It’s supposed to be fun. If she misses a grounder, its not like she’s going to be branded Bill Buckner. Or Jose Lind. Damn you MLB Network for airing Game 7 of the ’92 NLCS today! Six errors all season and then two in Game 7 Jose!
So I realized that I turned into that parent who signed their kids up for everything. Rye has violin Monday mornings before school and Tuesday during school. Gymnastics Wednesday night. Dance Thursday night. And now basketball Saturday mornings. But they’re not even breaking a sweat really in basketball so I’m not sure that counts. And it keeps them from watching The Disney Channel for an hour.
Of course in April softball starts for all three of them. I have no idea how we’re going to fit practices in there along with games. The girls are going to be in the backseat wearing a leotard, tights with cleats and a softball mitt on one hand.