Dear Kid,

Guess what I did this past weekend? I went to a college rugby game.

I was (of course) there to see my favorite future athletic trainer work the game.

I particularly wanted to see something spectacularly colorful but ultimately insignificant happen so that I’d know the Kid was learning something. (This led to my friend saying, “Enjoy the rugby game. I hope someone gets hurt.”)

I don’t know why, but that reminds me of this:

It was snowing, windy, and about 28 degrees, so I was quite happy to find a parking space right near the end of the field from whence I could watch the game in relative comfort.

I may have witnessed the least injury-filled rugby game in the history of rugby.

No one understands rugby because it was (we think) invented in England where they have a history of creating sports no one understands (looking at you, Cricket). We know that rugby can be played with either 7 players on a side or 15 players on a side (although typically not at the same time) and that the traditional striped rugby shirt was very popular in the 70s. A game without mud is considered a failure and a game without injuries is considered unsporting. A game without alcohol immediately afterward is nonexistent.

Oh sure, there was mud. And yelling. And several dudes getting up from the bottoms of various piles looking a bit dazed. And Our Boys won, so yay.

Rugby shirts were really popular for a while in the '80s. Then we got over it. DearKidLoveMom.comBut there weren’t any interesting injuries. There weren’t even any uninteresting injuries. The highly developed medical assistance skills waiting on the side in of the field in the cold were not called upon.

Until about 5 minutes before the end of the game when one of the other team’s players went down with a splat and didn’t immediately bounce back up. (Fact: Rugby players may be big, but they are very Tigger-like in their bouncability.) After another moment or two, I thought “Oh good. I’ll see the Kid in action.”

Just as I thought that, the player got to his feet and lumbered off the field, and I thought, “Oh good. I’ll see the Kid in action on the sidelines.”

Do you know what an injured ruby player does? He does not head over to the athletic trainer’s table for assistance, oh no. He decides to walk it off. When that fails, he sits down. When that doesn’t help any more than the walking, he shrugs, gets up, takes his rugby shoes to the car, turns to his cell phone, and begins to take selfies.

When the athletic trainer (aka the Kid) brings him a Helpful Bag of Ice, do you know what he does? He takes the bag politely, thanks the Kid, places the ice bag on his injured knee (while standing) for 1.387 seconds, then stands there holding it (not anywhere near the injury) cheering on his team to defeat, all the while thinking that it will be much easier to deal with the pain (and the defeat) as soon as he’s drunk. (Probably also hoping that the team will finish quickly so he can begin that medical journey as soon as possible.)

Rugby. A game without mud is considered a failure. A game without injuries is considered unsporting. And a game without alcohol immediately afterward is nonexistent.

So that’s what I saw. The Kid delivering ice. But very well-qualified and well-bagged ice.

Note: Turns out there was also a pretty significant nosebleed that required nose plugs, but I didn’t know about that until much later.

Love, Mom