Losing them, fixing them, forgetting to put them in
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The father looked to the refs, the zebras in their black-and-white-striped shirts, but there was no hand in the air, no signal at all that a penalty would be called.
I thought tryouts went great. I played catcher, just catcher. You may ask, How solid was my receiving with that lingering double vision? Well, I’m happy to report that squatting behind the plate was a miracle cure.
In 2014, during the tense aftermath of the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, Harrison decided the young fighters at the gym needed to get to know police officers, and vice versa. So he began offering free memberships to police in D.C. and Prince George’s County. Now officers often train with ex-cons and troubled youths at Old School.
Three months before his third birthday, his Italian grandfather (on his mother’s side) set him on a proper bicycle, pushed him forward, and shouted, “Spingi, spingi, spingi!” Just like that, he rode down the driveway.
So many times I would take risks that should have scared me but didn’t. When you grow up in a big city with hands-off parents, you become accustomed to harrowing situations. You may even come to feel that the wet plum of fear living permanently in your gut is essential to your being.
Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to officially enter the Boston Marathon. She wasn’t looking to make history; she only wanted to run. But in 1967 the marathon was closed to women. So she entered as “K.V. Switzer” and ran in disguise for four miles until the race director, Jock Semple, jumped off the press truck and shouted, “Get the hell out of my race!” The picture of him trying to rip the number off her chest made headlines.
One day a woman on a subway platform called out to me, “Go, Jets!” while raising her fist. Puzzled, I looked behind me and saw no one. Then I remembered: I was wearing a Jets cap.
On a bike I have wings and a kingdom. On a bike I’m a taller, stronger, wiser version of myself — the person I wish to be on land. It’s always been this way.