How Could I Say No?

As a welcome to the York Geography Department, one of the Professors (Emeritus) hosts a BBQ at his farm North of Toronto. This is a chance to socialize, meet and greet, and get some good food while hanging around with your fellow grad students and also your profs. It was fun, a nice group of people lots of families, and a soccer game*.

Okay, as I’ve announced, this is a blog about my studies at York while looking at the geography of soccer. Did I have any choice but to play? On the one hand, I’m not in particularly good shape – granted I don’t look like I’m impersonating a soccer ball, but at the same time I’m no Messi (disclosure: actual years spent playing soccer = 0). On the other hand, I’m studying soccer, my classmates and several of my profs know this. I don’t think even a “yeah that’d be fun, but I’ve got this bum ankle…,” would salvage my pride. So off I went to try desperately not to make a fool of myself.

Lessons in how not to make a fool of yourself:

1a) Bring small children onto the field with you, if they play well you bask in their reflected glow, knowing that they must have picked something up from you.

1b) If they don’t play well and get in your way – ready made scapegoat!

1c) If they are really young, adults are afraid to close them down or generally run into them, they make great defenders.

2) Play defense – very underrated in pickup games, meaning you look either a) responsible, or b) modest.

3) If your fitness levels are not that great play goalkeeper (apologies to real keepers – I know its a hard job, I gave up the “last goal wins”).

Final score: Other team won, but at least I didn’t do anything worthy of being posted on Youtube (good or bad).

Oh, and thanks to all the profs who put the BBQ on it was fun.

*Note: only a Geography Department soccer game will ever be interrupted so that a bird just behind the field can be identified.