“It’s just really important to Sam,” enthuses Marsha with a look of utter distress on her face about the whole situation, whilst simultaneously checking Facebook. “Soccer is a huge passion for him and he really looks up to the coach, sees him as the most important thing in his life during the soccer season – oh my gosh, Carolyn’s at it again with her status updates complaining about having no help at home, bor-ring….If no one else is doing it for you, get off Facebook and do it yourself woman,” mimics Marsha as she swipes Carolyn off the screen in disgust.
“You know,” continues Marsha, back to the important topic of soccer, “when their coach doesn’t turn up, not only does the team fall apart during the game, but the boys don’t feel like they’re worthy of their “esteemed” coach’s time,” she sighs, withdrawing her French polished fingernails back to their phone typing.
“Hmm,” agrees Beverly, mother of the star striker of the team. She’d not been happy since the beginning of the season when her division one son had been relegated back a level to division two. “This is what happens in the lower divisions, it’s just rubbish, no one commits, no one cares. I think I’ll talk to the club director about it. See if they can give us a new coach – one who actually has the team winning as their top priority. When he does turn up to coach he’s too soft, like they’re just there to run about and have a giggle. Perhaps we can pay a coach? Volunteers just don’t work.”
Marsha looks at her watch. It looks so out of date now, she must get herself one of those hot new Marc Jacobs’ timepieces. “Five minutes late again. This is just ridiculous, where’s the man’s commitment, I ask you?”
“Exactly. It might as well be us out there coaching them,” spits Beverly angrily. “We turn up with our kids on time, we put in all this effort when we could be at home in the warmth, feet up, watching I’m A Celebrity –”
“Oo, do you think Shane Warne will win?” asks Marsha getting excited.
“For sure – Oh, here he is, FINALLY!” says Beverly loud enough for them to hear in the next suburbs’ training grounds.
But coach Tim doesn’t hear the women. His mind is still back in that hospital with his little girl fighting the whooping cough ravaging her tiny body. On his wife who is falling apart and on his boy, slinking along beside him who is suffering on all fronts as his family dances with death. He gives his little Matthew a hug as they walk up to the waiting team. His wife had said it would be good to get fresh air, try and do life as normal for a while. Him and Matthew had missed last week’s game when their baby girl had been rushed to the Children’s Hospital – maybe a run around with his mates and a bit of his beloved soccer will make him forget for just a small while. He tries to remember how to smile: “How are my boys? I heard you played an awesome game last week, lots of great passing and marking, well done, high five! I was really upset I missed it…”