Advice: Never, ever stay to watch a practice
Somewhere in the Bible, there should be an 11th commandment (in fact, if I ever read it carefully enough, I am sure I'll find it). It's probably hidden away somewhere in Leviticus or been consigned to ignominy in the apocryphal or gnostic texts. It goes like this: "Thou shalt not stay to watch thy son's goalkeeping practice."
Twice I have done this so far this season, and twice I have ended up either being part of it or taking it completely, Tonight's was "the taking it completely" one. I am really not sure what the frig is going on with the club or the coaches, but it seems to me that if you offer a coaching course and accept the significant chunk of money from your participants for running it - then the least you can do is bloody turn up.
Anyway, the three 9-12 year olds enrolled had turned up with their parents (one of whom had obviously read said Leviticus/gnostic text and buggered off quickly), so I bravely stepped into the breach and worked the three of them as hard as I could for 75 minutes with no preparation and no plan. They seemed to enjoy it - and it was, all things considered, a pretty good session. What I discovered when I was coaching - and teaching actually - was that you can do these things as a one-off, but "winging it" is pretty much impossible as a way of life.
Other than that - and the arthritic pain that started once I got home - it was a nice enough day. The sun was shining, and summer was seemingly making its presence felt. The only mishap came as Mrs. Ottawacker took her long overdue turn to make dinner. Picture the scene. I am sitting in the basement transferring some money on line so we can pay our massive monthly Visa bill, when a high-pitched squeak is heard from the kitchen above.
"What was that - are you OK?" I ask.
"I'm fine," came the terse reply.
"I turned on the wrong element and shorted the whole stove."
This turned out to be only partly true. Our stove has been an issue for a while - and we are waiting for a part to be delivered and installed. While we wait, the four elements have been reduced to three and there is a gaping hole where the fourth element should be. This was the one that was turned on. This was the one that had shorted - not just the whole stove, as my wife had claimed, but the entire back wall. No amount of jiggling of breakers or kicking the stove or the wall would help (and we tried all of these several times.)
In the end, I slumped out and fired up the barbecue - and made another call to the electrician.