June 26, 2009 by David Gillaspie
DG’s B&B offers corporate team building exercises. If needed I act as facilitator. I coached youth sports for a decade and developed an instinct for finding common ground. Try finding the right words for an enthusiastic parent who blames you that their kid doesn’t give a damn about sports.
A former basketball coach spent a night in the Wrestling Room. We had a beer in the garage.
“During my last game my player’s brothers rode the refs hard. One of the parents in the stands asked the kids to quiet down.
“During a timeout I asked the kids to let the game finish before getting us all disqualified for bad sportsmanship.
“On the final buzzer one of the kids gave the ref a blast and got evicted from the gym. The parent took over and put the kid in a hammer lock and marched him toward the door.
“The kid started bucking so I jumped in. The dad told me he had it all under control. He said he was a cop. Said it like he was the only person who knew how to handle a kid
“I told him he was in my jurisdiction, that I would enforce the ref’s decision. Called him ‘Sir’ real loud and he let the kid go.
“I got the kid out of there after he went back to the stands for his book. Backing the cop off felt like beating a ticket in court. I told the kid how lucky he was and asked him if he felt lucky.
“The kid knew about his rights, but not about the right time and place.
“After I got him outside I saw one of the team mom’s and asked if she’d seen the renegade cop going berserk. She said he was her husband.”
We spent the next hour shooting Horse in the driveway, ten bucks a game. The coach showed me a scar on his head where he fell in another game of Horse and bounced his head off a boat.
He still beat me.