The tyranny of jocks and coaches
: Colleagues and bloggers John Shabe and Joe Territo dredge up unpleasant memories of phys eds past. This is inspired by a story in the Press of Atlantic City about an a-hole coach who gave a kid an award for being the biggest crybaby on the team. Shabe:
Reminds me of when I was in sixth grade and my gym teacher used to tease me in front of the other kids because I was fat. Do these guys take courses to come up with this stuff?
Not much of an athlete myself, I also had my share of asshole gym teachers. It was bad enough that I lacked the upper body strength to pull my lanky frame up a rope or to get my head above the chin-up bar. Not to mention that my eyesight and lack of coordination made it difficult for me to land my bat on the ball. Did those NFL-wannabe elementary and junior high school chumps with physical education degrees have to coax my classmates into picking on me for it?
I was tall and clumsy and the coaches were my nemesis. I couldn’t hit a ball within a mile. I had no hope of pull-ups, let alone that dreaded rope. I turned getting medicals into a varsity sport.
I came to hate coaches and their damned gyms. They made most kids into failures. It is because of them that I hated sports and exercise and turned into a couch spud and will probably lose years off my life as a result. (Only well after 40 did I start to “run” to survive.)
My kids had great P.E. teachers in elementary school (we didn’t spend tax dollars on that job description when I was in grade school) and so I thought the era of the a-hole coach was over. But then I came across a coach like those of my youth and I went ballistic, telling her — not that she wanted to hear it — how the coaches of my youth had ruined sports and physical fitness for me and I wouldn’t tolerate it now. Those who can, do. Those who sweat, coach.
So tomorrow at work, Shabe, Territo, and I will share a communal moment of klutzes. And our very jocky colleague Hauck will make fun of us. But we’re tough. We can take it. We are enjoying the revenge of the clumsy smart guys.