It's been a nearly insurmountable challenge; this being born with two left feet beneath knees that bend in alternate directions; and thighs made up entirely of unidentifiable materials. Aside from the obvious challenges in purchasing footwear, the darkest, saddest, most unfortunate side has existed in the impossibility of participating in varsity ball as a teenager.
Now, clearly seven steps of freedom exist between the likes of me and my firstborn daughter. Not only were her feet born right, but she can simultaneously move them back and forth, while bouncing a ball up and down, and remembering which direction she ought to be pointed in.
So, although I have grave disabilities of my own to contend with, I manage to drag myself (on my belly) across many a gymnasium floor to watch her perform her magic. My head has learned the rhythm of looking to and fro as the ball gets dribbled from one side of the gym to the other- back and forth, and back and forth again.
And in perhaps a desperate attempt to bridge the chasm between the haves (the coordinated properly footed individuals who also favour lulu lemon) and the have-nots (those of us who ask; "Who's the ump?" and "Can I drive the Zamboni?" at out of town basketball games...) I've found my own way to identify with the mysterious world of sport.
It's not entirely unlike housework. Substitute the ball for a full set of dishes that must be continuously run to and fro- from cupboard to table; table to sink; sink to sink, suds to dish rack. Throw in some confusing rules about how much time you have before you've got a penalty (you pretty much have thirty seconds to do the whole routine before the next time a kid whines; "I'm hungry"...) and all you really need to complete the analogy is a stripey shirted referee. (or it is "Back catcher"?!)
Once you fully grasp the parallels of the ball to life indoors, you'll be amazed how sporty you really are. Take laundry, for instance. You wrestle and wrangle it down the stairs, dodging pets, small and large kids, and unwielding furniture in your wake. You take aim at the mouth of your open washing machine from however close you can manage to get (cue pets, kids, etc). This is the start of the back and forth, sweat-forming set of motions that laundry demands. Up, down, back, forth... for endless quarters.
Yes, you are an athlete extraordinaire. You've no need for a $92.00 track jacket that will be obsolete and outdated in six weeks; a pair of hightops, or a team cheer. You are the team! You train tirelessly; and while you run to and fro, you juggle, dribble, sop, twist, all while performing the fanciest of all footwork.
Yes, basketball really is a lot like housework.
We'll just have to work on our pass...