When I entered Junior High in 1972, I had two choices; either join a sports team and become one of the "Cool" kids or don't and get labelled a Nerd.
Since I have the athletic prowess of, well, me, I accepted the fact that I was indeed, a Nerd.
But I was a Nerd with a plan. For you see I soon discovered a loophole in the intricate hierarchy of power and acceptance that is Junior High. If I couldn't actually Play at sporting events, the next best thing was to Cheer at them.
So I tried out for the Cheerleading Squad in Grade 7. And to my stunned amazement, I made it! I WAS Semi-Cool!
Now keep in mind in those days, "Cheerleading" merely consisted of a bunch of girls in skirts, bulky woolen sweaters and white runners singing and clapping. There may have been, for the more advanced and coordinated Cheerleader, the odd "jump". There were no acrobatics; no pyramids, no intricate dance routines. It is only because of this fact that I kept my pom-poms in Grade 8 too.
It was great. All the fun of cross-city tournaments and absolutely none of the stress. If we lost, it wasn't my fault. But when we won, well, of course, it was due to our incredible clapping skills! I still recall my favorite classic cheer which at that time, was NEW - before it was sung it at Every Freakin' Sporting Event Ever Since:
Yep, we were awesome!
My crowning achievement came in Grade 9 when I was appointed Cheerleading Captain. It was a great honour in my psuedo-athletic career. But on reflection 36 years later [oh gaaaad.... 36? Really?], I'll wager no one else was stupid enough to want the stressful responsibility for a gaggle of whining, primping, backstabbing teenage girls all vying for the attention of the hunky basketball and volleyball jocks.
But I must admit, I was destined to stand on the sidelines. It was where I belonged; still in a uniform, but safely away from potentially harming the real sporty types.
It seems I STILL carry on the tradition; but instead of standing on the sidelines, I sit in my comfy livingroom chair to scream at the TV. And my uniform? Well it's my Valentine's Day prezzie from hubster - an official Vacouver 2010 Team Canada hoodie jacket (to compliment my Official Mitts, of course):
"Go! Canada Go?????" Seriously???? Oh brother, now THAT was original.
But give me a break. It HAS been * sob * nearly 40 years...
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