This morning at Lewis’s school sports day they had a Dad’s race. I didn’t want to take it too seriously, in case I lost. But I certainly wanted to be calmly competitive and give a good show for Lewis.
As the 10 or so of us took off I tried to stay close with a fit-looking father. He took off with much gusto, clearly trying to take out the race. Prior to the race he happened to share he was a club rugby coach (an intimidation technique). At the halfway turning-point, I took it very slowly to avoid demonstrating my leather shoe’s lack of tread on the carpet-like surface. As I turned around I noticed a couple of other fathers had taken the risk and slipped over amid their 110% efforts. I almost came to a stop to avoid them, which gave a bit more of a lead to the other father – dastardly wearing just his socks instead of shoes. I upped the effort to catch him. As we drew close, with just 10-20 metres to finish, he slipped, fell & rolled spectacularly. I passed him with some caution to not get caught by his somersaulting legs, and I crossed the line in first place. The poor other Dad had to dust off a significant amount of fake grass from his office attire, and accept 3rd of 4th place. At least he gave it a go.
In those final triumphant strides my smile hid a slight grimace. I had pulled my hamstring. It was still totally worth it. After the race I walked back to my spot, concealing my limp. Lewis ran up to me, jumping up and asking if I had won.
I said ‘Yeee-ah’, as if no other outcome was possible.
I’ll skip football tonight.
This tale was inspired by Steve Bradbury.
Oh, and in other news, Lewis had a great sports day himself. And his house team won.
Don’t take my word for it about the Daddy’s Race, here’s the video evidence: