When my boy was seven years old his mom and I decided he would benefit from joining the local baseball little league. I don't know what HER excuse for this abysmal decision was, but having been in the parenting role for only a year at the time I can lay claim to noober ignorance.
I only got to go to a few practices and one game before Ella Rose banned me from attendance.
The coach was an oversized, underbrained neandertal who thought the best way to motivate small children was to yell at them, ridicule them, harrass them. I'm sure he was living out some demonic fantasy of being an MLB coach. I'm sure he was a dismal failure in his relationships with adults. I'm sure he was a lousy partner in bed.
I am fairly confident that under that pot bellied beer gut and gross, gruff exterior he wore pink and yellow flowered underpants.
At the single game I attended I was standing up at the fence. My fingers were clenched in the mesh, sweat was pouring out every pore of my being, and my tongue was bleeding slightly from my teeth chomping on it to avoid embarrassing my boy and forever alienating Ella Rose by the public humiliation that would have ensued had I given voice to my vehement ire at the thick-headed, single digit IQ-ridden, morally depraved imbecile masquarading as my boy's coach.
Did I mention I really, really did not like this man?
I was teaching college at the time and one of my students also had a little boy on the league. She approached me, politely ignored my physical anguish, and instead asked if I had a boy playing today. I smiled and pointed to first base, where he was standing after being walked.
Suddenly the air was split in two! I heard the crack of a bat, the ball went soaring high, higter, higher still over the second baseman's head. The coach screamed "RUN, KID!" and my boy sprinted as fast as he....
Actually, no. My boy did not sprint. What he did was he skipped. High strides. Long strides. Arms in the wind, a smile on his face. He skipped to the second base, and he skipped to the third base, and he skipped home, and when he got there he bounced even higher in the air and landed with both feet smack in the middle of the mat.
I was never so proud in my life!