I am very fortunate to have a job that I find incredibly fun and rewarding. I am on the radio program ‘Derringer in the Morning with Maureen Holloway’ on Q107. In my 12 years on the show by far the top 3 questions I get asked are, how awesome are John and Mo to work with? (answer – awesome, they are the best) what time do you wake up? (answer- 3:15am) and lastly, do you get nervous? (answer- not really nervous but excited)
Although I don’t get incredibly nervous, my job has put me in situations where I have been known to bite my fingernails on occasion. Some of those moments are…
-First few months on the air
-Introducing bands in front of thousands of people
-Auditioning for commercials
I will admit they are all cool experiences that have been known to tie my stomach in a knot, but none of that comes close to what made me the most nervous, and it happened last Saturday. On Saturday morning at 9am I was put in front of a small crowd and didn’t know what to expect. Within the first few minutes they looked a little puzzled, worried and in fact there were even a few tears shed…. I had my first practice as the coach of my son’s under 5 soccer team. I swear standing in front of eight five years olds is more intimidating than standing in front of Christian Bale (although that is a close second).
I don’t know what it is but I was up half the night in anticipation. I guess there’s something about looking at those little faces. They look to me for advice and I look to them in fear.
It’s also tough doing anything you have no experience in, first time jitters I guess. I mean, I played the sport my whole life but never coached. In fact, even as a player the only thing the coach said to me was “Ryan, you’ll be starting on the bench this game”.
Unlike my 5 years in high school, this time I was going to be prepared, I was going to do something called “homework” (pronounced home-work). The first thing I did was print up a bunch of lesson plans online. Things have sure changed since I played…especially the names of the drills, for example:
Today it’s called ‘sleeping bear’, in the old days it was called ‘run’
Today it’s called ‘coach says’ in the old days it was called ‘pass’
Today it’s called ‘what time is it Mr. Coach’, in the old days it was called ‘shoot’
Today it’s called ‘pirate ship’, in the old days it was called ‘score’
It didn’t take me long to realize that no matter what you call it, it was fun. In fact it was the highlight of my weekend (remember that blog I wrote about picking the best part of your weekend?) The kids were great, the parents were great and the soccer league in Acton is great. It really was a truly rewarding experience. It didn’t take me long to realize that I had nothing to be nervous about. I figure, what’s the worst thing that could happen? They kick me in the shins? Even if they do, I’ve got shin guards on.
All jokes aside, if my team happens to read this blog when they get older, thanks for your unbridled 5 year old enthusiasm….it’s contagious