capture the flag

My wife just told me she managed to get the grass stains out…


Every other Friday (on “Blue Week”) the entire middle school participates in Intramural competitions at the end of the school day. It’s kind of a Harry Potter-inspired thing, where everyone is a member of one of four houses (Gummere, Pemberton, Hallowell, and um, I forget the fourth) and each house is pitted against the other in grade-level games.

I personally think this is a great idea. The games are designed to be fun and inclusive, and it gives some kids a much-desired opportunity to run around, and goads others the opportunity to finally do something physical (and in the best-case scenario, without feeling inferior).

Not that it’s perfect. Intramurals this year has been disheartening for my homeroom because, well, because we generally lose. The natural athletes in my homeroom are in the minority; they tend to be outnumbered by the social butterflies and the, uh, non-athletes. The social butterflies tend to find a way to excuse themselves from participating, while the non-athletes generally start on a downward spiral of participation, frustration, complaining about technicalities, blame, and capitulation. Never having been much of an athlete myself, it feels like some sort of karmic punishment to lead these guys.

Last Friday the 7th graders played Capture the Flag. I just wanted to ref and revel in the beautiful spring weather. But as usual, my guys seemed outnumbered and outmanned by most of the other teams, and I started getting mobbed by snark and negativity.

I had to do something. So I got in the game. It helped, a little, I think, but I became painfully aware of two things:

  1. Seventh graders are young and fast
  2. I am old and slow

I got grass stains on my pants, I skinned my knee, and I hobbled around, sore, for the next few days. Not a better way to enjoy good spring weather.

capture the flagcapture the flagcapture the flagcapture the flagcapture the flag

sports, intramurals, physical education, competition, exercise, fitness


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