This blog explores the breadth and depth of just how truly horrible I am at being an adult.


Saturday, January 2, 2010

I'm really bad at sports.

My middle sister is awesome. Let's call her 'A'. She's a smart, kind, fun person. But I submit to you today that she is a thief. A thief of my athletic ability.

You see, I have absolutely, positively no sports skills whatsoever. I am god awful at any and every sport ever invented. The only sport I am even good at watching is baseball. I think if you were to hand me a football, I would spontaneously vomit.

My sister, however, is supremely talented at sports. As far as I can tell, she can play literally every known sport with supernatural ease and grace. She was blessed with the athletic ability of at least three average people.

Three people! You'll understand why I suspect she stole our skills, then, when I tell you that my one other sister is just as deplorable at athletics as I am. (But a wonderful person, nonetheless.)

'A' somehow stole our skills. She took whatever chance we had at being normal and hoarded it all for herself. She was a four-year starter on her basketball team in high school. They easily went undefeated in their league and won the state championship her senior year. And this wasn't no weak-ass state like Delaware or Nebraska. THIS WAS CALIFORNIA!

I, meanwhile, somehow managed to earn our cross-country team's 'Most Improved' award three years running. (We, by the way, were the worst team in the league.)

'A' went on to play Division I college ball, where in her Junior year the team won the Patriot League (a minor league, admittedly, but what have you ever done?).

What made 'A' such a basketball ace? Was it genetics? No. A goal-driven, competitive home life? No. Was it wizardry and magic used to drain whatever natural talent might have been bestowed on me? Probably.

I remember being on my town's CYO basketball team when I was in fourth grade. If you've ever played youth basketball, you probably recall the 'A' team and the 'B' team. The A's were stars and the B's were everybody else. But I wasn't on either of those.

Do you recall the 'C' team? Probably not, since not many towns had them. My town did. Thank God I wasn't on that one.

No, no. I was on the 'D' team. Ever heard of it? If you say yes, you're either a liar or you were one of the eight other kids on the team with me.

We were a team so definitively bad that there never was before and never will be again another 'D' team.

We were a ragtag group of shapeless, weak misfits, the kind Emilio Estevez would turn into a bunch of winners if this were a feel good family film. But we had no 'rise-to-glory' storyline; we had only weekend after weekend of crushing defeat.

We were ten boys who consistently lost to every team we faced. We regularly lost to girls team. It happened so often it eventually stopped being humiliating.

There was a retarded kid on my team. Let's call him 'M.' Now, I know fourth-graders will call anyone who's different 'retarded'. The kid who wore mismatched socks? Retarded. The kid whose parents didn't have cable? Retarded. Hell, I got called retarded for four years because I bought "Magic the Gathering" cards once.

'M,' however, was the more classical description of retarded. Learning disabilities, total lack of coordination, emotional and psychological impairment. Real 'D' team material. And we his teammates, being the horrible little snots we were, took advantage of his fragile state whenever we could.

Imagine an elementary-school gymnasium. There are the two main basketball hoops at either end of the court, but along the sides are auxiliary hoops that can be raised or lowered so more kids can practice at once. Someone (me?) convinced 'M' that those hoops were bonus hoops worth three points.

When he would shoot at them in games, believing he was a hero to our constantly-losing team, he did so with such horrible aim, such utter lack of precision and control, that it looked as though he were intentionally hurling the ball at the spectators in the stands.

If we were to get extra points every time the other team's parents were frightened that a kid with severe learning disabilities was trying to injure them, we would have made it to the playoffs. We could have gone all the way.

I write this anecdote now not to gloat about how mean someone (me?) was to a kid who obviously had it bad enough as it was, but rather to illustrate how rotten yours truly is at basketball. 'M' STARTED ABOVE ME IN THE LINEUP.

The coach would have rather endangered the crowd's welfare than put me in the game. He thought to himself 'Do I want 'M,' the kid who literally cannot tie his own shoes, or do I want Tony?' and he didn't choose me.

It was around this same time that I played my first (and only) Little League season. In one year, I did not make it to base one time. I only made playable contact at bat once; I grounded out to shortstop. Yet in that very same year I got hit in the face with a baseball... wait for it... twice. My face was hit by the ball more than my bat was.

With my limited knowledge of statistics, I could predict that every time my bat hit a ball, my face would be hit infinity times. From then on, I decided to stay home and read Shel Silverstein.

During the year all this was happening, my sister 'A' was playing and excelling on traveling soccer, softball, and basketball teams simultaneously. Coincidence? I think not.


  1. hahahah i can totally relate to the to basketball story. i was terrible! this one time before a game when i was 10 i drew dots all over my legs and connected them. it looked like i had spider veins. and yet there was one girl on my team (her ad was the coach, go figure) who always got the ball. she was the "a" girl on our "b" team (i dont know how i was on the b team, i should have been on the d team.) and she was a ball hogger and now shes on varsity. and shes not even nice either.

    -charlotte (charlie)

  2. some have habilkidades for sport and others but we always have some ability to find you something and not have to stop looking

  3. When you are an adult, you do really need to get into sports, specially, when you are older than 30. This way, you will keep yourself healthy.