Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Catch

We’ve all heard the joke where the pastor needs some rest and relaxation on a Sunday so he calls up his petitioners, tells them he is sick, skips church and heads right to the golf course. Once he is at the golf course, he has such an amazing round that as he approaches the 18th fairway he can’t believe how much his game has improved and marvels at how well he is doing.

Up in heaven, Peter turns to God asks, “Why are you blessing this man with such an amazing round of golf, on Sunday, when he should be teaching his Church?” God sits back, motions for Peter to watch further, as the pastor hits the truest shot of his life on the 18th and sinks a hole in one. As the pastor celebrates in unbelief, God starts to chuckle to the dismay of Peter. Peter, looking sternly at the Almighty, says, “Oh, that takes the cake. A hole in one?”

God simply turns to Peter and says, “Who’s he going to tell?”

And while this parable is comedic, it does seem to have manifested itself to me today. As you see, today, I’m in the middle of a “Man’s Weekend.” My wife and my daughters are up in Salt Lake and Boston and I have been left to simply fend for ourselves. Now, mind you, this is not a traditional Man’s Weekend, the highlights have included shopping; going to the bookstore, seeing a chick flick and quite possibly a little tanning. Believe me, I see the irony, but how we spend our “Man’s Weekend” is a story for another day.

While this weekend included a religious meeting yesterday, it did not include attending a meeting today. My brothers and sister are keenly aware of this tradition, which has been a staple in my family for years. Anyone who knows me, knows I am a stickler for tradition.

But the miracle of this weekend did not happen on the golf course. My highlight happened at the park, right next to my house. To set the scene, as always, I was dressed in black, from head to toe. I also had bribed my son to go to the park and play football.

The bribe is not important, what is important is the football. As any of you who have seen him can attest, Boston continues to grow. His shoes are size 14, his suits coats have been stolen from my closet and his height is well over six feet.

He is, as far as outward appearances are concerned, a man. In fact, at the 7-11 (another staple of the Man’s Weekend) the clerk asked if we were brothers, which means I either act like I’m 13, which is most likely the case, or Boston looks a lot older than his true age.

But back to the football. When we play football, its not football in its traditional form of 11 on 11. However, anyone who has ever played football will attest that what we do is football in its truest form. In short, we do drills. 1 on 1. Boston plays the quarterback, I play the receiver as we move up and down the field. Running and throwing, running and throwing, running and throwing. Usually there is no crying, but sometimes there is, which sums up the truest account of each and every football practice I have ever attended.

Sadly, for Boston, I love doing this. And, ever worse for Boston, I have found myself bribing him a lot. We played yesterday, we played last week, in fact, nearly every Saturday or Sunday, you will find us at the park, throwing the ball and sprinting up the down the field. We have always had a good time, but TODAY; TODAY was a miracle; a truly spectacular day.

Boston was focused. He was running and he was throwing the most perfect passes I had ever seen. As he took his turn at receiver, I took the position as quarterback. We moved up and down the field several times and then it happened.

It started as a simple ten yard route, which was suppose to end up in Boston turning to his left or so I thought. Instead of his left, however, he broke to the right, which left me throwing against my body and delivering an awful pass. It was a duck, it sailed over his head and was headed out of bounds.

As I prepared for the ball to hit the ground, I saw Boston jump in the air, extend his six foot frame and, with his left hand fully extended, snag the football before falling to the ground. He literally turned his body around in a circle, leapt in the air and snagged the ball one-handed before hitting the ground.

As he hit the ground, he stretched out his hand and held up the football displaying it in the air. If we had seen the catch on TV or at the Super Bowl, the image would be burned into our head through a continuous loop of highlights, but at the park, Boston and I were the only witnesses.

And, as I threw my hands in the air and shouted for joy, I am sure that somewhere Peter looked over to God and said, “I get it, who’s he going to tell?”

Knowing me, God must have replied, “Everyone.”


The B Hunters said...

love this!

melissa said...

I love you matt. Your hilarious. who can break with tradition. I never feel bad about breakfast out on sunday. Hey I turned out all right.

The B Hunters said...

While I may not be able to see the continuous highlight reel on t.v. your description was such that it is burned in my head. Way to go Boston! I remember having to catch a few of those ducks myself, although I doubt I did it in as much style as you obviously mustered.


The Meyer's said...

Dude, your blog is the best thing out on the internet. The kids keep asking what am I laughing at...

mhathorne said...

Matt, you are a gifted writer and storyteller. Thanks for sharing!

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