Saturday, July 17, 2010

he's talking about his . . .

It's time for one of my self concious in/out of the closet moments.  It's not new to me, but I don't think I've quite shared with anyone else.  Momma's probably seen and noticed it, but I haven't actually discussed it with her, so I can't be sure.  But she is somewhat astute.  She catches stuff sometimes.

And it has to do with my hair.  I'm going to tell you about it.

You may not know, but not so many years ago I was the guy with the shaved head.  I even have my own clippers.  I was really good at buzzing it all off myself, though I did always ask nicely and would get Momma to run around the edges, because I always missed something.

The worst was around my ears.  I always missed a nice long strand, and I would never notice it till a couple of weeks had passed and it was noticeable as it and the hair around it grew.  And I don't know how I always missed that bit.  Early on I noticed a pattern and paid extra special attention to that area.

Hair is damn fine insulator.  It holds in much more heat than you might realize unless  you're going bald or have been or are the shaved head guy.  Depending on when I last shaved the noggin and depending on what time of the year it was I might reach needing-a-nother-swipe time in the colder months.  Sometimes I'd let it go longer because I knew that I'd be that much colder for the next little bit after removing it, but I hated my hair and would also just want it gone.

If I didn't shave it it was unmanageable and sucked and was wispy and mousy and sucked, and I hated it.

And then somewhere around the time I came out and unrelated to my coming out I just didn't cut it one winter.  I actually didn't cut it at the time because of the winter.  I kept the insulation intending to shave it in early spring, and then I didn't do that either.

And then it was all kinds of looking like shit because it hadn't been cut into a style and was pretty much growing in as a horrible mullet like thing.  I had a friend trim the sides and back enough to fix that situation, and eventually I went to a local chain salon and paid someone.  For the first time in years someone else cut my hair with some concern as to making the cut something that added something of a style.

But by that point I was sorta on a mission to just let it grow.  I was never allowed that luxury as a child.  My haircuts were provided free of charge by my father when he decided that it was hair cut night.  Each of my brothers and I took our turn in line to get a get little missionary style haircut.  He did a great job, as far as I know, and only nicked me a couple of times over the years, but I never really had any option but the one cut we all got.

And though I'd never really thought that I wanted long hair I let it grow, and in the process I changed my attitude about my hair and stopped forcing the curl out.

I actually never realized my hair would curl the way it does.  I'd always hated what my hair did and, when I actually had hair, I forced it to not curl.  When I let go and let grow however I saw what it was actually capable of, though I'll admit that I have to control the curl to be sure that it doesn't go the wrong way.

And now I just hate the sides.  I don't really hate them in general, but I do hate them now.  My hair needs to be shortened, and when it gets as long as it is the sides go all sorts of stupid.

Am I in a better place with my hair?  When I had none to concern myself with I was never really concerned with it.  I buzzed the clippers around my head for a while, swept the floor after dusting myself and took a shower.  There was a lot of craning my neck and trying to align a hand held mirror with the one on the medicine cabinet as well, but that's a given.

I should point out now that I've re-resorted to cutting my own hair, but this time I use scissors.  I seem to at least be able to get my hair to a uniform not bad where it's all roughly the same length, but I still have to get Momma to come behind and fix what I can't see.

But I don't wanna.  I want to pay someone who actually makes their living making hair look nice in a way that me, the bathroom, a wet comb and those damned scissors can't.  There's a whole other part of this dream where boys run into things accidentally because they can't take their eyes off me as I walk by, but that's not part of this post.  I'll write about that another day.

we'll see bout this

a) I can give every single child the same chances, choices, options

b) I can put your kid where I want them and train them to do that job so that we can win games

There's been a lot of soccer in my life lately, and currently the t.v. behind me is showing what I'm assuming is this year's ACC women's championship between the Tarheels and the Seminoles.  I'm kind of assuming the game is being played in the spring. 

And I'm loving it!  This week I watched part of the men's version of the same ACC championship, UNC vs. UNV, and I watched the US women's national team tie at one with Sweden.  Earlier tonight I watched Manchester United beat Celtic three to nothing, and last night was MLS action, DC United versus Seattle Sounders with Seattle getting that win.

While the kids' soccer sign ups usually sneak up on me I got an email this time around to confirm whether I planned to coach at the U12 level again.  So it's been on my mind a bit.  You might even say that I've been thinking about it.

I may not have shared anything about last season, and I hate to have to say it, but we had an entirely losing season in the spring.  I had a great group of kids that I'd love to coach again, and I think that we could have a totally different season this time around, partly because they'd go in knowing each other.

That was one of my complaints, and it's a complaint I had with my U8's as well.  I was given teams of kids that didn't even know each other for the most part, though a couple kids did know each other, and there were a couple of pairs of kids that were friends with each other.  And I recognized larger groups of kids on other teams as having been those same large groups before. I feel that left my kids at a bit of a disadvantage going into the season, and due to that and other random nonsense toward the end of the season really messed with their heads.  They never got the chance to see themselves as the team that I saw, and I remain proud of what they were able to do.

But I'm not here to bitch about that.  I think that having heard from the coach coordinator is an attempt to address a problem that's been recognized by more people than me.

I do want a winning team, but more than that I recognize that these kids are ten and eleven years old.  My goal has always been to help them develop a love for and understanding of the game, to help them learn skills that will make them better players and to give them access to different positions.  I don't want for a kid to think he belongs in a position without his agreement. 

The key is to find the balance between a and b from the beginning of this literary journey.  I doubt I'll be coaching U8 as we're going to find something else for The Boy.  Soccer is so not his thing, and the only time he really wants to play is before the season actually starts.  Once he's out having to actually run and play soccer he changes his mind. 

And that's fine. 

I'm curious to attend the preseason coach meeting, to find what players I have from last season and to see them again at our first practice as well as to meet the new guys.  I'm excited to start working with them, to try this thing about balance where I push them to greatness.

And now for something sort of along the same lines and not entirely something different, and I get that it's a pipe dream, but I love the idea. Read on.

I may have another trick up my sleeve in addition to balancing the whole things I said, and it gets to my goals as a coach, and it gets to a concern I have always had with how I think I assume the parents see me as a coach.  I could totally be wrong about their opinions I assume for them.

See, we live in a football town.  I know already that, come fall, our soccer Saturdays will be a sea of orange in support of the local college team.  Some of the families only watch soccer when it's their kids, but they sure as hell are going to watch the sports they grew up with and know and understand.

They just don't get soccer . . . yet.  I'm going to attempt to give the families homework, though I'm not sure it will work.  I'm going to give them watching soccer homework, and I'm going to request that the parents and kids watch as many game as is reasonable for them, assuming we can still get some soccer on the t.v.  I want them to get it, to know what's happening, to understand why it's beautiful and why people love it.

I have a few weeks before I really have to worry about any of this, but those weeks are going to go by quickly while I'm not really paying attention because it seems so far away still.  And then suddenly it'll be time.  I'm excited.