Remember elementary school? Back when we had recesses throughout the day, and that extra-long 80-minute break during lunch (OF COURSE YOU DO)? The last of the years for recess was probably grade six for you readers; once junior high hit, you were an ‘adult.’ In fact, you could do whatever you wanted during lunch, whether that’s study (meh), head out to the local IGA for candy (probably) or for some kids, stroll down to the local park to hide in the bushes and smoke pot (probably as well). Different strokes for different folks, right?
Dope aside, remember those days of playing soccer out on the school field? Those days were fuelled with rivalries; at my school, it was always the French Fries vs. the English Muffins. Having a bunch of club soccer players in our French class, we’d always win, bringing glory to Les Bleux against a depleted and withering English side. Whenever one walks or drives by lunch-time elementary recess, it seems as if the mini soccer games are inconsequential, just a few kids running around, having fun and of course, NEVER taking things too seriously. But that’s WRONG. THOSE RECESS SOCCER GAMES ARE LIFE AND DEATH. No matter how damn cold it was out there, students tie up their shoes, blast through the school doors and sprint onto the soccer pitch. Whether it was +10 or -15 did not matter: a game was to be played, the opposing class was to be conquered. Glory awaited.
And there we have it: you can now see that the weekend’s upcoming soccer games between the Golden Bears and Calgary Dinos are no different than your typical grade six rivalry match out on the beaten-up grass. Of course, the quality of university-level soccer might be slighttttlly better than what you’d find at McKernan, Kenilworth or Lendrum elementary schools, but the principles are identical. Back in the glory days as 1o year-olds, -10 didn’t even factor into our decision to play soccer at lunch. It just – happened. The same will take place this weekend at Foote Field, when the temperatures are expected to reach – hold your breath – MINUS THREE!
For the fans sitting in the Foote Field stands, it’s probably prudent to bring gloves and a toque. For players, some of those sleek Nike soccer/running gloves and a long sleeve Underarmour shirt will suffice.
This game won’t be decided by pure speed, footwork or prowess with the soccer ball. Indeed, this weekend’s matches come down to just one thing: whoever brings out their inner-elementary will make the opponent look, well, elementary.