Call me Ishmael.

It is no secret to long-time readers that I rather intensely dislike having my picture taken. This is not because I’m on some government watch list somewhere and there is a warrant out for my arrest, I promise. Anyway, the only thing that I enjoy less than having my picture taken is being video taped. Whenever I’m forced (usually at gunpoint) to watch myself in a video all I can think about is how I look almost (but not quite) exactly like a curiously hairless gorilla. I have poor posture, an outsized belly, and appear something like 1.5 times larger than any other human in the picture.

All of these things were made very apparent last night when I received an email from my referee assignor. Apparently at least one of the parents at a youth game that I officiated was upset enough that I missed a foul committed against their child to send in a video clip of the game in order to show everyone exactly how poor a referee I am.

Normally this is where I would insert the video clip in question so that everyone could make their own jokes about how, “aren’t vertical stripes supposed to be slimming?” or “how could anyone tell if you miss a call for all the glare blinding them from that enormous melon you call a head?” but I don’t really know the rules about posting videos of minors and Future Generators have to be particularly careful about those things.

The main point of the email concerning the game was about the extremely poor sportsmanship exhibited by nearly everyone at the game. Interestingly however, there was apparently no video of any of those events and the only clip provided as evidence was the 60 seconds during which I missed a call. This is mildly upsetting to me not only because I really do try to call a fair and safe game, but because I was front and center for the entire clip. I was forced to watch myself stumble around a pack of 12-year-olds in a comical attempt not to knock them down or accidentally club them to death with my gorilla arms for almost a full minute.

What makes it even worse is that my posture gets progressively worse the more tired I get. As this was my 4th game that day, I looked rather like the Hunchback of Notre Dame. It is possible that the reason no one said anything to me during the game was because they were terrified that I would drag them back to my bell tower.

When I got up this morning I realized that it is only Wednesday. In as few as 3 days I may get the singular joy of officiating one or more soccer games where apparently the Crazy Bar has been raised to include video evidence. I don’t suppose that anyone knows a REALLY good personal trainer?


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