I never played organised soccer as a kid, nor was I a prodigal student of the game, brought into the coaching ranks to lead men, a boy myself. I didn’t really even like soccer until I was 16, when a whirlwind romance with England saw me up at 5:30 A.M., devotedly watching them in the Korea-Japan World Cup.
In the world of lunchtime recess soccer, I was but one of the scads of first and second graders buzzing flylike around the ball in what can generously be called an extremely rough approximation of the beautiful game. The fact that I was elevated to a leadership position is a biting indictment of the very notion that such an ad hoc confederation of youngsters should have such a complex management structure in the first place.
Middling performances and quick exhaustion comprise my recollection of my playing days. I am left to assume my ascent was the product not of shared acknowledgment of some forgotten accomplishment, but rather indifference to my self-imposed marginalisation.