One distinct delight of our Michigan life is attending high school football games. Even though I understand the sport better now than I ever have, watching the people in the stands still distracts me constantly. There are a few very specific types of attendees at high school football games:
The Mom: Every time her child is on the field, her engagement increases. Leaning forward, she holds her breath for the plays. If he gets tackled she doesn’t blink until he’s up.
The Old Guy: Alone and unbothered, he munches on concession treats and takes in the game with placid aplomb. Only a questionable call from the refs is enough to rattle his cool. Standing, he’ll shout and wave his arms.
The High School Crew: Decked out in team spirit, they walk up and down in front of the stands, more interested in seeing and being seen than in how the game is going.
The Younger Siblings: After countless hours spent at sporting events for older siblings, these may be the most savvy fans in the stands. They know when to hit concessions, the bathroom, and even the secret way to sneak under the bleachers and look for loose change. And if figuring out all that stuff gets boring, there’s always the game.
The girlfriend: Proud of her significant player, she comes to every game. Wearing her sweetheart’s jersey, she makes friendly comments to the people around her. After all, she’s never understood football.
The Dad: Caring for his other children occasionally distracts him, but most of the time he fixes an attentive gaze on the field. With every admirable move his son makes, he puffs up and looks around to make sure everyone else saw it too.
PS. This weekend at the grocery store, with arms full, I ran into the candy aisle for some gum. One moment, I was holding a box of cereal, a container of ice cream, a bag of marshmallows, a pint of blueberries, my wallet, my keys, and my phone. The next moment, I was holding all those items except for the pint of blueberries. It had tumbled from the stack in slow motion, hit the floor, and exploded. Blueberries went rolling everywhere. If I had any presence of mind, I would have taken a photo.
Instead, I just stood there and stared, hopelessly mortified.
PPS. I survived, but only after turning burning crimson and scooping up a hundred blueberries.