Monday, August 10, 2009
Secret 19: The Sportsmanship Award
The elementary school I went to included 6th grade and the junior high was only for 7th and 8th graders. We were classified as a 2A (small) school and I was in a class of roughly 25 kids. As in, there were 25 6th graders TOTAL, in the whole school, and there was only 1 school in the district. The elementary, junior and high schools were on the same campus and served by a grand total of 4 school busses for 6 towns (including the town of Nimrod. Giggle).
The 2A softball rules said that if a team has more than 3 6th graders that it is considered a middle school team. Having 6 of them on our team we had to choose: Either we cut 3 girls from the team or we play against the middle schools. So, we played against the middle schools... With 4th, 5th and 6th grade girls we played against 6th, 7th and 8th. And four of our 4th graders were very small for their age (1st or 2nd grade size, really. There must have been something in the water that year). So, needless to say, we lost a lot. In fact, we only won one game. By forfeit of the other team.
The parents wanted to teach us to encourage each other so every time one of us cheered on a teammate (saying "Good Job" or whatnot) they put our name in a ziploc bag for that inning. At the end of the game one name was drawn from each inning to win a candy bar. We knew we couldn't really win but we cheered each other on a lot anyway. At the end of the year we did win one thing: the Sportsmanship Award. It was a unanimous vote by every team in the league.
After I graduated high school I was talking to someone about sports and I told them that I was on a 2A team that never won and do you know what she said? "Well, you at least beat XXXX didn't you?" to which I replied "I was XXXX...".