I have been going to basketball games this weekend as there was a tournament.
I have come to loathe these things. Because I have to get there early. I have to sit there and be engaged in the game on the off chance girl gets to play. Now these are not high school games where girls might be scouted by college coaches. These are Junior High Games.
There are 8 girls on the team, but five of them play over 90% of the available playing time. The other three (Sophie included) get to share the dribs that remain. Today Sophie played 90 seconds. Yesterday? She played 2 minutes. Why? Well the excuse this week is because she missed Wednesday's practice. And why did she miss Wednesday's practice? Because I didn't check my email from Tuesday afternoon until Wednesday afternoon. And if you don't make practice, you don't play.
You are part of the magic five.
Then those rules don't apply.
But for Sophie? They are ironclad. Which is humiliating for her. And a waste of fucking time, energy and effort for me. Because I am the one coordinating her running around. Driving her. Staying and cheering. Consoling her as she mourned at the end of the game.
It has become a sick routine.
And today I snapped.
I had her there 1/2 hour early like they are told. 10 minutes before the game starts the coach saunters in. And then Sophie sits there. As to M and E.
The team they played today was really, really good. And it was clear by half-time there was no hope of pulling this game out. Yet those five girls played and played. E got to go in for about 2 minutes in the 3rd quarter. Then M got two minutes in the 4. Celia who was with me, looked up at from her phone with two minutes to go in the 4th and said, "Has Sophie played at all?"
And naturally, the answer is no.
So at the end. As the girls are getting brow-beaten for their shitty performance, I walked up and asked if she wanted to go home. Their last game was going to happen in an hour. She said she wanted to stay and I pointed out that there really wasn't much chance of her playing. Which made the coach turn to me and say, "She doesn't come to practice, she doesn't play".
And that made me insane.
Because everyone knows that those rules don't apply to the "A" team. And I pointed that out. And then I called him an asshole for pushing that line of bull.
It was wrong and I am not proud of it. Worst, I embarrassed Sophie who is the innocent victim.
But it is ridiculous that this continues. That this man screams and swears at them during practices and then bullies them endlessly on the court only to leaving them sitting endlessly on the bench.
I am angry and done. This isn't character building. And Sophie staying is pointless.