I haven't written about any of my experiences being a soccer referee lately since nothing truly exciting or out of the ordinary has occurred. More importantly, I went on a self-imposed sabbatical from working as a ref (see the raising two young kids thing). While I worked as an assistant referee (AR) for one adult game in July, this past weekend was the first time I worked multiple games in probably 9-10 months. I served as a referee for a tournament and was assigned 3 high school aged boys games. Again, nothing out of the ordinary except for trying to see what kind of shape I'm in...until this happened.
That is my cleat. It is not supposed to be in two pieces. I worked as an AR for the first game and moved to the center referee position for game #2. About 5 minutes into this game, the top portion of the bottom part of my cleat came undone. Fortunately, the entre bottom part of my cleat came off (though exploded sounds more exciting) about a minute later. I have no idea how I would have run the entire game with part of my shoe flapping around. It took another four minutes to retrieve the missing part of the shoe, and I ran around holding the shoe for another minute until I could get it off the field.
There's a specific uniform you have as a ref that includes black shoes. While I knew that it was probably about time to get new cleats, I didn't think about bringing an extra pair of black shoes since, first I don't have a second pair of cleats, and second, I never thought that my shoe would explode! So I ended up finishing the entire game running on essentially one and a half shoes, and in my opinion, called a good game. For the third game, I wore gray tennis shoes as an AR. I don't think anyone noticed though I know I probably looked a little silly.
Oh, it turns out that I fared pretty well keeping up with all of the 16 & 17 year olds. Of course, I was exhausted when I got home from the games and am a little sore today.