Friday, April 3, 2009

The (Occasionally Bratty) Boys of Summer

We're just one practice into the season for the Cardinals, my son's pee-wee baseball team of highly distractable first- and second-graders, and already I've encountered my first youth-coaching dilemma. We're doing some base-running, mostly to work off some of the kids' manic energy, and it falls to me to demonstrate the proper way to round first base and make the turn toward second. I'm trotting through my demonstration when I hear from the team assembled behind me one of the kids say, "Faster, grandpa!"

Do I:

a) Take the occasion to remind the team about the importance of supporting and respecting each other?

b) Challenge the kid to a foot race?

c) Have him drop and do 20 pushups?

d) Reassign him to our team's minor-league affiliate in Rockford?

Or are there other options I haven't considered? All who respond win free admission to the Cardinals' season opener on April 19.


  1. e) Challenge him to a footrace and leave his sorry ass in the dust; then make him play outfield for the rest of the season.

  2. I like Harriet's answer! But what I usually do in a similar parenting situation with boys is laugh it off by inviting that kid to take over the demonstration and show us all how to do it "right." Because parents are, you know, unimaginably old. Ever so much more than twenty.

  3. I recommend only challenging him to a footrace if you're sure you can win. The pushups are more of a sure thing; the little guys may be fast, but almost never have the upper body strength to do quality pushups.

    Or you could just call him "Sonny" for the rest of the season, and pretend to be hard of hearing when he talks. "Eh? What's that? Speak up, Sonny!"

  4. I like the Rockford option. A little exile might do the boy some good.

  5. Thanks for the advice, everyone. I'm glad you've got my back. See you on opening day.

  6. I'm late to the party, but I'm a fan of "all of the above." Rotten kid.