Congratulations! You have passed the first phase of our soccer coach application, the background check. (Note: While you were charged with indecent exposure for running through your college quad wearing nothing but your school colors in body paint, we think this shows great team spirit! So we are overlooking the night you spent in jail frightening even the gang-bangers with your black and red paint with the word “Marauders” scrawled across your back.)
Next, we ask all applicants to fill out the following form using a number two pencil.
YOUTH SOCCER COACH APPLICATION QUESTIONNAIRE
2. Home phone: (so parents can call you after the game to complain that little Billy didn’t get enough playing time, even though he spent his time on the field making a wreath out of dandelions)____________________________
3. Cell phone: (so they don’t have to wait for you to get home) ______________________________
4. Which best represents your coaching philosophy (circle one):
a. Let’s have fun!
b. Let’s try to get better at soccer!
c. Let’s take on the entire league and fight our way to the top for total world domination!
5. How do you deal with the parents?
a. I include them in team decisions, and value their input in game strategy.
b. I listen to their concerns, but I don’t change my coaching style for every little comment.
c. I wear my “I coach. They play. You watch.” t-shirt and shout a lot.
6. How do you treat the kids?
a. As individuals, each with his own personal skills-related goals for the season.
b. Really, this whole charade is just an excuse to kick soccer balls, because the over 30 league kicked me out for slide tackling. Wimps.
c. Like my minions.
7. Choose the best answer to complete this scenario:
It’s the middle of the season, and you have practice tonight. The sky looks ominous, and the weather forecast is calling for thunderstorms. You have a game against your rival team tomorrow (you’re 1 and 1). You’d like to practice corner kicks and remind the defense to stop chit-chatting like ladies from the Red Hat Society when the ball is at the other end of the field. So, you:
a. …cancel practice so we don’t all get soaked and zapped by lightning.
b. …see if everyone can show up 30 minutes early so you can at least get the corner kick practice in before the storm hits.
c. …hold practice. We’ve got the game of a lifetime tomorrow, people! Suck it up!
8. Your goalie just got nailed in the nose with a penalty shot. So, you…
a. call an ambulance and do yoga until it arrives.
b. run out to the field with an ice pack and a towel and motion the boy’s parents onto the field, despite league rules that parents aren’t allowed on the field, no matter what.
c. take the opportunity to remind the ref that your grandmother can see better than he does.
9. When it comes to building a team, you prefer to…: (circle one)
a. make the best of it with whoever shows up.
b. hold tryouts, knowing that whoever gets cut will probably egg my house while their parents drive the getaway cars.
c. trade with other teams, using offers of $150 cleats gratis, soccer balls signed by David Beckham and unlimited ice cream as incentives.
10. If selected as a coach, I will..
a. …probably forget to sign up for a field and end up having practice in my backyard, around the shed.
b. …likely not become entirely disillusioned until at least the playoffs.
c. …buy the soccer board a case of Champagne each and then pretend that it wasn’t inappropriate, just so I don’t have to fill out this dumb form again next year.
Like this? Why not try these?:
You’re a Good Mom (and Your Kids Aren’t So Bad Either) by Jen Singer (for the chapter entitled “Don’t Let the Youth Sports Cartel Rule Your Life.”)
Pssst! Hey, you! We’d love to hear from you. Anything. A little hello. A “that was funny.” A “I’ve been a long-time fan” or “I’m new here.” Let’s get the conversation started. Some of you provided such great quotes for my books, that I’d love for everyone to hear from you here, too. You are such clever fans, all of you. Thanks!