I Love: Lloyd

A few years ago I read Malcolm Gladwell's book Outliers. In it, he talks about how most of the elite hockey players in Canada are born in the first half of the year, a huge amount in the first three months. When kids are little and join sports teams that are chosen based on birth year, the ones born earlier in the year are bigger and faster and more mature (some by almost 12 months). Over time, the younger ones don't make the good teams, and end up training at a lower level with inferior coaches, thereby exacerbating the gap between them and the older kids. Eventually they are weeded out of the game. I saw this phenomenon first hand, though I didn't realize it at the time. I was born in early November and was almost always the youngest person on my regional ODP team. I distinctly remember one year that there was only one girl younger than me, born at the end of December. This did nothing to help my "cool" quotient, not to mention the height differential between me and the other goalkeepers.

What I did have, however, was parents who continued to pay for me to play until I caught up. Even more importantly, they (and many others) believed that I could and would catch up if I tried hard enough.

Simply put, they kept me in the game.

What I've come to appreciate more than ever recently is that we all have people who keep us in the game.

I Hate: Rejection

When I was in second grade, I was in a clique. (Part of my on going quest to be considered cool).

We called ourselves the Pink Coat Detective Agency – although we didn’t do much detective work that I can remember.

The problem with being in a gang…I mean clique…is that you aren’t supposed to fraternize too much with non-members – in case you let slip a secret and have to go sleep with the fishes during naptime. I like to live dangerously though, and if I had one weakness at that age it was kindness (not anymore…gang life hardens you).

I Hate: Fear

Sept. 11, 2014

I was eleven years old on 9/11 – sixth grade.

I was in gym class when they told us to go to the auditorium for an all school assembly - no time to change. I would spent the rest of the day in my gym clothes. White school polo, navy mesh pants, and a purple velvet hair tie holding my hair in a too-high, too-tight ponytail.

I heard it first from a classmate on the walk back to school. He said one of the world trade towers fell down.

I thought it was an accident. What else would an 11 year old think?

I Hate: Losing

Aug. 28, 2014

I hate losing.

I’ve done my share.

It sucks.

Two teams I played with and loved to death this year lost in the final and semi final of their leagues. Overall, not bad at all.

But I still hate losing.

Mostly because I love winning, it matters to me, and I enjoy keeping score. Matters very little what game I’m playing, actually, or who I’m playing against.

I Hate: Travel

July 24, 2014

I don’t travel well. Anyone can attest to it (especially my former Portland teammates).

My issues with travel are thus:

You have to wake up early. I’m not sure why this a rule, but it seems that “hitting the road early,” or taking the first flight out, is a big deal to people. I like to sleep. Anything before 6am, I consider to be an ungodly hour.  Which is why I always carry a full sized pillow and have developed a special kind of travel narcolepsy that allows me to sleep anywhere at anytime.

I Love: Positivity

July 7, 2014

When I was 12, my best friend’s father passed away suddenly.

I didn’t know him all that well. Sometimes when I slept over he would take us to breakfast at the diner (I always thought he was super cool cause he knew the waitresses, and would make everyone laugh). But we weren’t close. I was a kid, and he was someone else’s dad.

Yet – I still think about him at least two or three times each year.

I Love: Trampolines

June 23rd, 2014

Trampolines are the coolest.

Nothing brings out my inner child quite like walking into someone’s backyard and seeing a great, big, giant trampoline.

My eyes get super wide, and there is usually a high-pitched squeal right before I take off, sprinting down the lawn, hopping from one foot to the next trying to remove my shoes without losing forward momentum.

I then like to embarrass myself (or show off, depending on how highly you regard trampoline-ing prowess) with a series of jump twirls and karate kicks.

I Hate: Laundry

May 19th, 2014

I played in my first W-League reserve game this weekend (yay!). We won 4-1 (double yay!).

It was 4-0 until about the 88th minute when our team got a little bit casual, and a forward picked off a ball that was being passed between our two center backs. The forward took a couple of touches and shot it to my left, I dove, got a couple of fingertips on it, but it hit the post and went in.

I was Pissed. With a capital P.

Not at my defenders or myself or anyone really (okay maybe a little). I was just pissed. It was completely unnecessary, and looking up at the scoreboard, a 1 just looks so much sh*ttier than a 0.

I Love: Logic

Apr. 7, 2014

My mom spent the majority of my adolescence trying to get me to eat disgusting foods. I was always more than willing (maybe just willing) to try whatever she put in front of me, but she never seemed satisfied when I said I didn’t like it. “You’re not giving it a chance!”

As a consequence of this (unwarranted) mistrust, she resorted to deceit – smothering fish in sauce and telling me it was chicken, mashing up mushrooms and hiding them among my vegetables, calling it V8 juice rather than tomato juice…

Sooooo clever.

I Hate: Bad Habits

Mar. 28, 2014

I was at training last week on a beautiful (blustery) day. I was excited to be out playing, and excited to learn more awesome goalkeeper stuff. I was sure - as I am every day - that that was going to be the day that I made every save perfectly (what can I say I'm insane...I mean I'm an optimist).

We were warming up with some basic handling, and I was taking the 400th volley that week in which I didn’t get my arms out in front of me before, during, or after the shot. Predictably, my arms got jammed up against my chest and I dropped the ball.

A voice inside my head let out a blood-curdling scream. Three seconds earlier that same voice had been whispering: Get your hands out in front of you. Get your hands out in front of you. Get your hands out in front of you. And yet there the ball was again sitting at my feet.

 

Betrayal! My body was intentionally sabotaging me.