Tonight Cam made her high school volleyball debut. Her team of six stepped out on the court and I couldn’t help myself (even though I promised to try).
“Let’s go, Rams!” My voice echoed in my head as it bounced off my mask and caught in the back of my throat. This is so weird, I thought, fighting the urge that tempts so many of us to pull down our masks to let our voices carry across the divide.
A few over-the-net exchanges, and I clap and holler, and it sounds like I am the only one. I know (I hope) that I am not, but most of the crowd of single-serving spectators is behind me and off to my left, and it feels awkward to look around to check.
“Nice job, ladies. Let’s get it back now!” It almost seems futile to shout out.
This is not what high-school sports should be. I mean, where is the group of obnoxious junior boys? Where are the cliques of girls huddled to watch their friends? Where are the upperclassmen to mentor the freshmen? Where is the cheer squad? Where are my people and everyone else’s to clap and stomp and create the frenzy that would show them this is our territory?
Because this is new territory for me and for her and I want her to know what it feels like to take the court to the roar of the home crowd, Friday-night-lights-style.
Tonight, I sit in my seat, six feet and more than six seats from anyone else. I watch her set and serve and captain the heck out of her team. I try to keep my promise, and I fail miserably from my silo in the stands.
“Let’s go, Rams!”