Posted by: G. Lane Cavalier | June 6, 2008

Life: Followup to “When Do We Start Keeping Score?”

I wanted to take a few minutes to followup on my post from last week.

First, thank everyone for the comments, some here, some on Plaxo, and a few by email or in person. It seems the article is something just about every parent has come into contact with.

Second, I’m here today after spending two hours at an unusually hot, sticky, and humid tryout last night.

The club team my son is trying for had about 19 to 22 boys trying out for 14 to 16 slots on the team. They seem to get what our organization seems to try so hard for them NOT to get. Everyone worked hard, I saw my son work as hard for two hours as I’ve ever seen him work. I knew probably 18 of the boys trying out and I can say that not once did I see a kid loafing or just trying to “slip in the back door.”

Now I do understand, that the kids I saw yesterday were the “motivated” ones who wanted something more, you could tell in their eyes that they didn’t assume they were going to make it, but I also saw something that impressed me more.

Each kid was working to fulfill his own “dream” of making the team, but the sportsmanship was incredibly. They helped each other up after hard tackles, they patted each other on the backside after good plays, and I don’t think I heard a cross word out of any of them. It was almost ‘mystical’ to feel like the ‘good old days’ for a few minutes.

My son came home on cloud nine, and went to bed 30 minutes early from being tired. When I asked him how he did, wise beyond his years, he said “I don’t know, I think I worked hard and looked good, but so did a lot of other guys. I don’t know if I made the team Dad but I think I did my best.”

Now, from my perspective, I felt like 10 kids locked up spots (they were head and shoulders above the rest), I think maybe 2 kids really didn’t stand out or looked over matched. I think my son and another 8 or so kids are going to be in a group that the decision will come from for the other 4 to 6 spots.

I went to bed last night feeling a lot better about this generation, it seems maybe our “rules” can’t mess them up to bad. Like with adults, some of them “get it” regardless of what we tell them.

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