Friday night in these parts means one thing: high school football. Okay, I'll make a small concession. There is a shrinking group of elderly folks for whom every Friday means BINGO. I worked Friday night BINGO for a while, back before babies five, six, and seven. The Friday night BINGO attendance has been in steady decline for the last ten years.
This Friday night started a little unusually, with a call from my mother-in-law. She wanted to invite her daughter, my lovely wife, to see a movie. This happens less often than a blue moon. Unfortunately, my wife's mom must have forgotten that her grandson plays on the football team, and two (three if you count their cousin) of her granddaughters play in the marching band, which places their dad (that would be me) firmly in the stands watching, while their mom stays home with the youngest children. And so, my wife politely demurred.
Amy really only stays home with Michael and Erin. Catherine is in sixth grade and has discovered the social aspect of going to football games to hang out with her classmates and meet other students from the opposing schools. She promises me that she doesn't talk to the boys. And then there's Jamie, the three-year-old. She looks forward to attending the football game each week, where she cries for popcorn, suckers, and whatever other concession stand confections she sees in the hands of other children. I can usually put her off until half-time.
This week was an away game. Jamie nodded off on the drive there, and the last few minutes before arriving at St. Henry, Catherine and I spent trying to keep Jamie awake. Our team played well and brought home a 34-7 victory, taking their record to 5-2, with good chances for post-season play. The season is going well for them, but the players are starting to feel a little beat-up. Jamie, on the other hand, didn't make it to the end of the game. As the time ran out in the fourth quarter, I carried a sleeping bundle in a blanket to the car for the drive home.