I don’t mean Mike from Jersey Shore. Who, by the way, might be the most clueless dense loser I have ever witnessed on TV. This guy named himself “the situation.” That much arrogance so laughably misplaced is remarkable.
Anyway, here’s the situation: I pick up Kinz and Bails from daycare today after work. Rye is down at Grandma camp this week. I recommend this camp to every single parent on the planet. At least until Pelosi and Reid figure out a way to start taxing it to pay for health care. Shedding one kid changes the dynamic in your house. Bails and Kinz have been goofy all week. It’s like they are long lost pals seeing each for the first time every time they see each other. There has been virtually no order at all in our house. It’s like Arnold’s first day as a teacher in Kindergarten Cop. They haven’t gotten along this well since…well…since the last time Rye was at Grandma camp. Hmmm….
So they are telling me a story about playing “outdoor kickball” at daycare today. Yeah, I didn’t realize there was indoor kickball either. And they were a little tad bit confused when I asked what the differences were between the two versions.
Regardless, they are playing outdoor kickball with a boy named Ryan. Only three of them playing. Ryan is kicking, Bails is on third and Kinz is in the field. Basic baseball base running rules evidently apply. Except Bails still isn’t real clear on all of said rules. Ryan lofts one into the air…Bails takes off for home because “I wanted to get home because that’s how your score points.” Kinsey drifts over to her right and catches the ball. Ryan is out. And Bails needs to get back to third before Kinsey touches the base.
Except for two things.
1-One of the rules in outdoor kickball is that you don’t have to actually “tag” people with the ball or step on a base while holding the ball. You can throw the ball at the base and if the ball hits the base before the runner gets back, the runner is out. Or you can just rifle the ball directly at the runner and if it hits the runner, he or she is out.
2-Bails wasn’t really familiar with the tagging up rule. So she’s running full speed, head down for home. And Bails is fast. She’s also pretty serious about being fast. Serious enough that we’ve already decided that we’re forcing her to run track. I’m not kidding. She’s The Flash. Remember Michael Johnson in the ’96 Olympics? She’s that fast. Except she’s blond. And only 6.
Anyhow, Kinz throws the ball at Bailey as she’s running for home. And after watching Kinsey play softball, it’s safe to say that the one thing that stood out was that the girl has a freaking bazooka for an arm. She nailed Bails like she was Elway throwing to Vance Johnson to end The Drive. Knocked Bails right off her feet.
Bailey did not react well. She started launching woodchips at Kinsey like Will Ferrell throwing snowballs in Elf. She actually started crying while they were telling me the story she was so upset that she was out.
How the hell do you handle all of that?
I mean I’m pretty clear on the whole hurling wooden projectiles isn’t really a good choice on the decision tree of how to act when you make an out in outdoor kickball.
But Bailey, as you may have gathered, is a slight bit competitive. Which is good. That will serve her well as she strives to achieve things. But you don’t want her to be that kid who stomps away if things don’t go her way. You remember that kid. The one who wouldn’t play unless they could win every time.
She’s also a team player by instinct too. So when her sister tags her out, she takes it like some sort of betrayal.
You can take several strategies here:
Tough Love/Low Sympathy Strategy: “Suck it up. You got out. Big deal. Next time watch for the ball and you won’t get out. Now finish your peas and leave me alone.”
Helicopter Parent Strategy: “I can’t believe they even let you play a game where someone could get hit with something. That’s irresponsible and horrible leadership from your teachers. I’m calling right now to complain about this.”
The Obama Strategy: “First of all, why is Ryan out? The rules are stacked against him. He should be awarded first base because of the years of unfair outs with which he has had to deal. Second, why is their only one ball. Everybody deserves a ball. And if they don’t have one this country certainly has the resources to design a system so everyone who wants a ball can have one. And not just the crappy balls you buy at Wal-Mart, but the really good ones that the privileged kids out in the suburbs have. Last, Kinsey cannot be allowed to prevent Bailey from getting home simply because history, tradition and the Constitution say she can. Outdoor kickball needs transformational change!”
Turns out the thing that really mad her mad was that she didn’t know the rules. So Kinsey and I explained them. No idea if it helped but she stopped crying long enough to finish her dinner.