Monthly Archives: October 2011

Why I Can’t Play Sports for Fun: Part II

My previous post began with an expression of doubt about my own ability to play sports for fun. I talked about how my experiences as a college athlete birthed a competitive side of me that simply doesn’t play nice with other kids (unless you count ripping other kids’ heads off and carrying them around on sticks like little head trophies as playing nice). In the end of the post I voiced my relief that a scheduled game of flag football was canceled due to rain. This meant that my inner ogre never had a chance to rear its ugly head.

I was then presented with another opportunity to play some good old two-hand touch football a week later. This time Mother Nature didn’t hand me any game-canceling gifts, which is a shame because what happened during the game was a sight for sore eyes. I’ve been told that one person can’t lose a game for the team, but I suspect this time was an exception as I was most certainly the reason why our team lost by 50 points to a bunch of no-talent ass clowns.

I know what you’re thinking. I’m just being hard on myself, I’m exaggerating, but I tell you I am not. You see, the girl I was marking was half of my height, double my weight and definitely looked like her running speed topped out at 5 m.p.h. I’m willing to bet a kidney and one of my dachshunds that she hasn’t played a competitive sport since her middle school gym days and that even then she probably took herself out five minutes into the game and shamefully ate all of the halftime oranges at end of the bench. These are all reasons why I chose to mark her. She was everything that I wasn’t and was absolutely going to make me look like a rockstar.

Turns out judging a book by its cover means that the book will make you look like an idiot by scoring 100 touchdowns without moving more than ten feet at a time. She exposed all of my flaws as a flag football player and made it clear to everyone that years of competitive lacrosse experience don’t mean shit if you have a body like a barrel and the ability to be in the right place at the right time.

My uselessness didn’t stop at the defensive end. I proved to be completely inept as an offensive threat before I even had a chance to step on the field. While warming up on the sidelines I invited a team member to toss me the pigskin as I ran some practice routes. I overcompensated in my attempt to make the catch and instead fell flat on my face in front of the rest of the other team’s sideline. And I didn’t catch the ball.

I will say though that the worst part of the game wasn’t the fact that we lost because I didn’t have the agility to mark the most un-athletic person on the field. It wasn’t the fact that I fell down during warm ups, thereby securing my place as “the useless girl on the team.” It was the look of disappointment from my teammates. It was the realization that my extreme competitiveness isn’t what prevents me from playing sports for fun. I can’t play sports for fun because I’m just plain awful at them.