I can see a number on a back and think immediately and randomly of favorite players, from teams I’ve loved or coached or both, who wore that number. It’s especially common when the Denver Broncos wear their orange jerseys.
I see 80 and think of Haven Moses, of Joe Dudek when I see 32 and, at seeing 43, remember Steve Foley.
Those who wear a number belong to the team in the moment. There were 33s, 29s, and 5s before them, and after they’re gone, someone else will suit up in that number. While you’re in our colors you’re loved; after you’ve moved on, you’re remembered.
How could I forget? I was also going to pick up my cousin, Raquel, in San Francisco. All this, before I’d even learned to parallel park. But I was ready. Kids these days? They’re not so ready. Why be ready to drive, when you parental Uber toting you around?
Hayden and I talked fantasy football while I fixed her scrambled eggs Sunday morning.
I know, you’re not supposed to talk fantasy football. Maybe it’s okay with the people you play with? Anyway, Marcus Mariota, you see. He’s projected for mad points this week, but is questionable for the game Monday. Should I stick with him?
I prayed about it last night I told Hayden.
I actually hadn’t. On two other occasions, I’ve prayed for trivial things (that didn’t feel trivial in the moment) only to see them granted. I tried to remember the last time I did actually pray. It might have been in acid-washed jeans.
My soccer boys must face a team next week that we angered greatly last week.
We did nothing wrong. Outside of beating them. After the match, they sat on the turf in various stages of disbelief. An older, more experienced team tested and topped by a band of upstarts. It’s a sweet feeling to pull out a win like this.
And now, we must go to their place.
Moments that shape us aren’t limited to wins. Moments of discomfort and fatigue and dismay contribute to that ever-changing DNA of self. No matter what happens next week, the team we will convene as the next day will in part become a result of this match.
I chose troubled Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott in my fantasy football draft. It’s not just any draft. It’s a league of four. That’s me and my daughters. The league winner gets a trip with me to an NFL game.
Madison said she didn’t want Elliott and she didn’t want Colts quarterback Andrew Luck.
The reasons were different. Luck is hurt. Elliott is in a battle against a six-game suspension for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy. They say he abused a woman he says wasn’t dating (not that it matters) but that evidence says otherwise.
More than that, if you count the days as an athlete. Back then I warmed the bench. I had a uniform, though. I loved sport. I sucked at it. But I loved it. I romanticized it and I relished it. And I could do it just well enough to make the team. Not an atom more.
I tend to stand on the field a bit, which is illegal.
I’m short. I have to do it. I get out of the way when the ball comes my way. Unless I don’t. One day I was slow to retreat. The ref gave me a look. The opposing coach hopped and pointed fingers like I’d just stolen his fortune cookie.
It’s an undisclosed, nondescript number at which fashion is no longer a player in my life game. It’s an age at which lead singers for bands I once blasted from stereo speakers as a teenager (Huey Lewis) now hocks … of all things … hearing aids.
You ought to see some of the ads served up on my Pandora station, for men of my age.
Look, I might not be able to dunk a basketball (I could, on a 6-foot rim, once … okay, 5.5-foot rim), or do anything crossfit, or – Hell – stay awake through consecutive episodes of Hawaii 5-0 after dinner. But I sure as Hell don’t need these supplements you’re pushing on me.
I had to go with that opening line, because I’d promised someone I would. I’m glad, though, because this friend suggested it as we talked about how things are going for me now, and it perfectly tells the story.
No, I’m not coming out of the closet.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that. You might have noticed more of a mindful bent on Mondays around here. I can’t help it. Between meditation on Wednesday, yoga on Friday (something old and new), and prayers for world peace on Sundays …