Reflections by a stuttering referee · Uncategorized

Kent Cornucopia Days: Refereeing Soccer and a Date


On Saturday I was the center referee for three back to back soccer games in the muggy heat, and each game went well with neither parents or coaches hooting and hollering at me. As I went home to relax for my Assistant Referee (AR) game, I got a call from one of the head game assignors who asked me if I could stick around for the next game since their was nobody on it. I was shocked that he called me which left me lost for words for a moment. After I regained my composure I accepted and worked it out with my parents since I’m still in the process of getting my driver’s license. So there we were arriving onto the field only to be told by the field Marshall that the game before mine was running 35 minutes late. Crap.

U-16 boys

Once the game before mine finally ended I grabbed my linesman flag, took a swig of water, and trotted over to the center referee so we could get the teams playing asap. I should’ve known from the start that this was going to be a bloodbath. The game was ultimately a tennis match with players flying around like rag dolls, and sending me running up and down the sideline as one pass ended up in a lightning fast breakaway. Of course the parents from the losing team were commenting on how poor I was doing and blah blah blah, I just maintained my focus on the match and ignored their comments. The game ended with the losing coach stomping off in anger, and saying he’ll report the center referee to the board (considering 90% of the board are certified referee’s, he’ll be fine).

Do or Die Game

The match itself was evenly played for a semi-final between two Kent United teams playing fast paced, procession orientated, smart football. The coaches complained that there were too much physical contact, which I was watching for and the moment the boys (only 13 years old) were getting too rough I stopped the play immediately. There was some comedy in the game though, players were flopping and flailing their arms like Brazil in the World Cup. I just gave them a shaking head and let play continue.

The First Date

I recently met this girl, and we just hit it off from the start. She gave me her name and number and asked me to contact her when I was free, which of course I did. So we texted each other back and forth and we talked on the phone for hours on end that same night. Turns out we have loads in common and she’s also shy like me. Yesterday we went to the street fair called Kent Cornucopia Days. We were both incredibly shy when we first met at the library since our parents both drove us their, but after they dispersed and we walked around my shell seemed to shed a few layers as I cracked some jokes which made her laugh. My stuttering surprisingly was next to nothing, I did have a few minor blocks on words but she didn’t seem to notice. As we sat on a bench and talked, we nearly lost Barack of time and slowly converged back to our parents who were waiting for us by the library.

Later that evening she sent me a text saying it was the best first date ever, and that we should definitely plan for a second date in the summer and this time go to Seattle. That was honestly one of the BEST evenings of my life, and I can’t wait to see her again.

– James

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5 thoughts on “Kent Cornucopia Days: Refereeing Soccer and a Date

  1. Flopping and flailing around like Brazilians. I hate that. And at such a young age too.
    Congrats on what sounds like a very good night. And a great idea for a date too.

    Liked by 1 person

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