Bleacher Bits: Every season, it's about the kids
I've often said that the approach I take when writing about high school sports is all about the kids, but this past weekend helped me realize that my reporting style is just as much about the parents, or even more so.
When I went home for lunch on Friday and checked my mailbox, I had a priority-mail package waiting in there for me from my 25-year-old daughter. I quickly tore it open to find a batch of homemade cookies she had made for her daddy, along with a perfectly worded "hang in there" card she hoped would bring some smiles while I deal with a personal challenge.
And a big smile it brought, when I could see through the happy tears.
Then my 28-year-old son came down from Red Bluff for the weekend. This is a man whose interests have been more toward the creative and far from any playing fields. Yet he wanted to come down and watch the 49ers with his dad.
And after dinner I asked him if he wanted to watch a movie, and he asked me to put in "Field of Dreams." Nothing will ever usurp that movie from the top spot on my all-time favorites movie list, and the reasons I like it are too numerous to mention here. But my son likes it because he knows what it means to his father.
People have told me over the years that my children must have had good parenting, but I have also been quick to insist that maybe I was just fortunate to have good kids.
I'm sure the majority of parents reading this have also been blessed with good kids. We're not necessarily talking perfect angels here, but the type of kids whose many positive and cherished moments provided greatly outnumbers the list of "kid mistakes" they are all expected to make and hopefully learn from.
Could I choose to become some hard-as-nails sports reporter that rips Jimmy up and down when he loses a fumble on the 5-yard line when his team is driving for a potential game-winning touchdown?
Sure, I could. I know a little about sports and knows lots of words, but the simple matter is, I choose not to.
An accurate depiction of the same event can also read something like, "a potential game-scoring drive was halted by a fumble inside the 5-yard line."
It still tells the story, but doesn't needlessly point fingers.
I've been a sports reporter since 2005, but I've been a parent since 1985. I cannot turn off the parent in me when I write, and I don't intend to.
You bet I'm proud of both of my children, just as I'm sure you are of yours. I prefer to also help your kids feel proud of themselves, both for the effort they put out and whatever results those bring.
I'm not about to pretend not to have kids while I'm writing; in fact, I can't think of anything in the world that would be worse than not having them.
CONTACT Craig Purcell at 824-1036 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.