Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Sports Day, or, How To Piss Off Everyone.

Not everyone likes sport. I get this, I understand this. I, on the other hand, utterly live for sport. Sport is my foil that retains my sanity in the classroom. Outside of school I coach, watch and compete (with decreasing levels of aptitude) in about four sports.

And this is why I should not be allowed anywhere near a sports day.

It began in the morning when they appeared. The other teachers. I, of course, turned up to the sports day in a school sports staff polo (thoughtfully purloined) acceptable shorts and plausible running shoes (just in case some moron volunteered a teachers race and I could faux-reluctantly agree) Unlike my humble self, the interpretation of the dress-code by some other members of staff was an utter catastrophe. Let us put to the proverbial dogs some potentially anonymous examples:

The 'I could do sport in this if i have to' 
 It's a classic look. Black t-shirt on a steaming hot day. Denim shorts. Or maybe cargo shorts that, although absolutely practical for running down the high street of some godforsaken 'strip' in Zante or Ibiza at four o'clock in the morning in the vain hope of finding some chicken, are simply too constraining/inflexible/baggy/tasseled to afford the staff member a potential 400m PB. I can respect these people, for in general these staff members do not do sport, but they have tried here to find something that looks vaguely athletic. This outfit should be accessorised with 'sports' trainers and a cap. For some reason there is always a cap. Or a Kevin and Perry style rave hat.

The 'I don't do sport. Sweating is beneath me.'
This group is split, I'm afraid, between reasonably overweight office staff and young female teachers with a penchant for attention. They wear a floaty dress, or something extremely figure-hugging, that would be in no way applicable to a sporting event. I have no problem, per se, with those that do no sport or just don't want to, but sports day is not a fashion show for teachers. The whole concept of a teacher on a sports day hinges around looking like a complete tit. Face paint is obligatory. Stupid dancing, humiliating teachers' races and some little shit pouring a drinks bottle over your head are to be expected.
At my school we wear house bibs, regardless of whether we are student, staff or, in fact, competing. These bibs are flourescent and shamelessly unflattering. The saddest moment of the whole day for me was when I saw one of the female science teachers wonder along the front of the stands wearing her bib tied into some sort of sarong/tankini top/god-knows-what in an attempt to glamourise than unglamourisable (definitely a real word). I looked down at my own gnarled branches of legs, worn-out shorts and ill-fitting flourescent yellow vest (magically both too short and too wide) and all i could think was 'just get over yourself. How do you expect our year ten girls who pour themselves with makeup and false hair/nails/god-knows-what to actually find a positive self image built around self respect. As teachers we have to be positive and sensible role models. I have miles more respect for those teachers dancing like lunatics and enjoying themselves in a carefree fashion than those that are worried about how they look. If you want to teach, stop worrying about how attractive you look and instead use that newly found time to inspire some students to pursue some dreams while having fun. I would have told her this, but instead I was too busy losing my voice cheering for my house's relay team.

The 'Actually, none of you know I'm actually an incredible sportsman outside of school and I will now expose this by wearing the outfit of this sport with pride.'
one of these little bastards always turns up don't they. Then they wear some sort of lycra skinsuit that makes everyone feel a touch awkward, enter the prestige event and get pasted, mercilessly, by a science teacher wearing combat shorts.

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