Saturday, January 18, 2014

Wildcats and Turtles and Disharmonous Harmony

Here we sit at the middle of January, and all that is green is buried in white.
The skies filled with those big grey and purple clouds that hang low packed with snow.
Sometimes it falls. Sometimes it doesn’t.
Sometimes I shovel it. Sometimes I wait for next week’s thaw to clear the laneway for me. 
But summer ball is right around the corner.
Yes, it’s a very wide corner still but it’s there on the horizon’s horizon.
This season will be very exciting as both Alannah and Ashley-Rae are playing at even higher levels, both playing on traveling rep teams here in the Windsor area.
But this year they play on different teams under different clubs. Alannah will be playing for a bantam team of girls born in 2001. She is playing for the Wildcats.
Ashley-Rae will be playing for the Squirt team of girls born in 2002. She will still be playing for the Athletics of the Turtle Club, on the same team that Alannah played on last year but is now too old.
While the Wildcats and Turtle Club share a mutual need for diplomatic mutual gain, the fact is these two clubs don’t like each other. And one of her coaches this year coached another team from yet another club Alannah played against last year.
And that club didn’t like the Turtle Club either.
None of these clubs like each other – but years of competition mean that many of these coaches and players have spent time in more than just one of the clubs.
It’s likely very common from community to community, rivalries like these. They are great as long as they don’t get personal.
So far so good.
But it is extremely interesting to me, the observer I seem to have retired to. Seeing both sides, seeing both styles both so completely different despite their undeniable similarity. Like two competing churches each searching for the more perfect doctrine. Both reading from the same book and interpreting the same things differently.
It’s fun.
Ashley-Rae’s team has three of my players from my Gold ’99 team from last summer. Now I’m just a dad but I’m proud of each one of them. Now they join forces with the girls that Alannah left behind.
The other girls from Alannah’s team that moved on because their age moved them up to Bantam now play on the same Wildcat Alannah does. Great kids. Great parents. So I am not so alone now straddling the Wildcat – Turtle Club line. Although the Athletics team parents seem like extended family to me.

The best of the best.
So I am looking forward to watching both teams.
They have both been practicing since the summers end. In different elementary schools in the same way, doing different things looking for the same results.
Both managers are also excellent. One a wily old veteran of the coaching circle – the other a young woman who’s extensive and impressive player career and coaching experience has now culminated to her first  managing position.

I'm very happy that both girls have such great leadership to play for.

Yet so similarly different.

Just like Wildcats and Turtles.

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