Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My Life As A Referee & How It Pertains To Writing

So, most of you know that I referee girls basketball games.  In my league, girls games are generally different from the boys in that when a girl fouls, she almost always apologizes, but when a boy fouls, he denies it and calls the other kid a crybaby.  (Although I have seen some girls who have clawed opponents.  That's rare to see in a boys game.)

Last week, the game was in double overtime and it was intense.  Both teams were in double bonus and we were running up and down the court with wild abandon.  (Okay, maybe I wasn't running with wild abandon. I was running with a wild plea heavenward to let it end, please for the love, just let the game end.)

I called several fouls and we had two fans that were heckling us as referees.  Every call made was, "Are you kidding me?  Are you blind?  Has blowing that whistle affecting your hearing and your eyesight?"  (The week before I was standing in front of the fans with my back to them, doing my job during the game, and one fan--a large man--said, "If something doesn't move soon, (meaning me) I'm going to spank it."  I think that's possibly the most shocking thing ever said to me as a referee).

But I digress.  At the double overtime game, we were being good referees and ignoring the hecklers.  Every time I ran down the court near them they would be armchair-refereeing with, "that's a foul.  See that?  Three in the key. Count that?"  It was annoying since they were obviously watching a different game than I was.  Or seeing it from a  perspective of their daughter that they loved was in a situation they wanted to make better for them---and see them win.

Which brings me to my thoughts today.  I thought about comparing the hecklers to editors, but that didn't come out right.  Although you can ignore hecklers and editors.  (But hopefully your editor isn't telling you, Hey, that's a misspelling there, see that?  Plot hole there.  Third one.  Count that?  It could get awkward that way.)

I thought about comparing the hecklers to fans in our lives who are well-meaning but perhaps misguided.  They want everything to be good for us and always have us on the winning side, but sometimes the method they use isn't the best.  Can't we all think of an annoying but lovable person in our lives?  But then I thought maybe that person in my life might recognize themselves in my post and I'd be in trouble.

I also thought about comparing the hecklers to reviewers, and that seemed to have some traction, but then I remembered that I review books and thought I better not go that route.  I don't want to compare myself to those hecklers.

So, I settled on, ignore the bad, remember the good, and be grateful a large hairy man never got close enough to spank you even though he threatened it.

New Castle and Hawaii Five-O next week.  Can't wait!


~T~ said...

In a soccer tournament last fall, some of the parents from the other team (mostly, I hope) were making helpful/critical comments to the referee. Tired of it, he loudly directed the coaches (on the other side of the field) to keep the parents quiet, or he'd end the game. Does that not work in basketball?

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

We probably should have given them a technical. I've never heard of refs ending a game over it though. Interesting!

Debra Allen Erfert said...

You are so ridiculously funny, Julie! I needed a good laugh this morning. Thank you.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Debra, I'm so glad someone gets my sense of humor. :)

Jon Spell said...

"If something doesn't move soon, (meaning me) I'm going to spank it." I think that's the best thing I've seen in a while. Oh, tears in my eyes. =) (Sorry for you to be in that situation, really, but hoo-boy.)

I think of the hecklers as being more of the people who seek to tear down your work or you. Someone can provide me constructive criticism and not be a heckler, or someone, hypothetically, could say that if I don't plan to publish in the LDS market, then I clearly don't plan to get published. Youtube commenters? Hecklers.