December 7, 2011
I was the team mom for my kids' soccer team this season.
I have never held the office before volunteering for it, and if I had known how hard it would be to collect $5 from each family for a coach's gift, I would have thought twice about it.
Two friendly emails did little to inspire the masses. Neither did a verbal announcement made at the end of one of the practices. A couple of parents promised to bring some cash to the last game of the season. Others just averted eye contact.
On the day of reckoning, my husband supported me by parking his lawn chair on the opposite side of the field from where our team was stationed.
"The sun will be in my eyes if I sit over there," he explained. This is the cowardly way of saying that he wanted no part in the money collecting.
If there is one person on the planet who hates collecting more than me, it's my darling companion.
I began by roaming the sidelines aimlessly. My hope was that someone would accidentally make eye contact with me and thus trigger his/her memory.
When that didn't work, I resorted to roaming the sidelines aimlessly with a stack of dollar bills taken out of my own purse. I was betting here that the prospect of being the lone non-contributor would guilt the detractors into paying up.
No such luck.
By the fourth quarter, I was forced to actually say something. Not surprisingly, everyone was really nice about it. Eight families even promised to bring their contribution to the team party later that night.
Only three families did.