The subject referee uniform shown above,
not the subject referee
My 17 year old son Brandon is a referee in the local township soccer league. He regularly holds sway over games for children anywhere from ages 6 to 16. He wears a cool uniform. And has a whistle.
Brandon came to this part-time job by way of being a super soccer player ever since the first time he kicked a soccer ball and sent it spiraling into my groin. On his best playing days he can sweep down the field eluding opposing players just like Wayne Gretzky, only without the skates and ice. I don't know the names of enough soccer players to make a better analogy.
Clearly Brandon did not get his athletic prowess from me. You've heard about people who can't walk and chew gum?
I can't chew gum.
But it does give me a great deal of satisfaction to have someone in the family who wields such a level of authority in the sports arena. And it sort of conveys upon me a measure of clout that makes me one major dude to be reckoned with!
"License and registration please!"
"Is there a problem, Officer?"
"Yeah, there' s a problem. It's a Violation 378-A1 --- Going 65 miles per hour in a 15 mile an hour zone, weaving between cars like you're some Indianapolis 500 hotshot on Memorial Day, and blasting "Born to be Wild" out your car window so loud the actual John Kay of Steppenwolf can hear it, and he might even be dead."
"So?!! What are you? Intoxicated?"
"Oh, no, Officer, I'm just a very poor driver. I don't even know why the state licenses me."
"Out of the car please!"
"Officer, I don't think you understand."
"My son is Brandon Block, the soccer referee."
"Officer O' Reilly, is it? On any given Saturday, my son has total authority over 20-25 individuals in this very township. Make that 22-27 counting the coaches, even more if there are assistant coaches and some random moms and dads!"
"Get out of the car right now!"
"Officer, you're making a big mistake!"
"GET OUT OF THE CAR RIGHT NOW!!!"
"Just wait until Brandon hears about this!"
A bit later, after booking and processing, I was granted my one phone call.
I called Brandon.
"What ever were you thinking, Dad? I'm just a soccer referee for kids."
"But you do wear a cool uniform. And you do have a whistle!"
"Dad, I'm just a soccer referee for kids."
There's nothing worse than a fallen idol.
The subject whistle
Author's Note: This little piece was inspired by seeing Brandon in his uniform and whistle heading out to ref a soccer game. He struck me as looking very official and authoritative which struck me as something the self-indulgent Perry would go way over the top with.
After that, it pretty much wrote itself.
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