Sporting life

And it feels like
I’m seventeen again
Feels like I’m seventeen

So sings Annie Lennox.

Sometimes I am 12, my puer aeternus intact.

Forever Young as Dylan would say.

Always been like this.

But I guess I have nothing on my beautiful grandson John.

A day short of twelve he is playing for the whole Metro and environs minor-peewee championship. Resting for the big game? Are you kidding? He has his first ball hockey game in the morning, followed by his winter baseball practice in a gym, then at night, he scores 2 goals and an assist in a 3-1 victory.The kid is wearing me out.

JM33hoto 3

Grampa with the Thunder hat, John with his medal

True I am still hobbling from an injury at our annual Easter ball hockey game but this is too much. I still have my pride. And my memories.

Bball 56I watch the Thunder go wild as they throw their gloves and helmets in the air. It all comes back to me. I have been there and tried as a coach to help the young to appreciate those significant moments.Even losing with a kindred group can have lasting meaning.


Sport correctly understand as a true amateur (from the latin root of amare—to love) has the power to eternalize a moment when time stands still. Outside the rink, the diamond and the court it may be mean Greenwich time, but on the playing field it is eternity. Sacred ground may be anywhere people congregate. Here we can have transcendent experiences which go way beyond the winning side of a scoreboard.


Coaches may not plumb the mystery at work here.


That’s why we have grandparents nourished in a sacramental worldview.


Ah, to be twelve again.Or 3.

John and Gramps


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