There must be a theoretical limit to the tolerance of the human body to the unnatural sitting posture imposed by the standard sports bleacher. This is not a seat designed for anyone over the age of 30. It was certainly never intended to be endured by anyone in excess of a couple hours in a week. Yet parents of sporting teens find themselves relegated to these modern-day torture devices with painful frequency. I will personally have logged almost 10 hours this week alone.
I do sometimes wonder if sitting in bleachers might be considered a semi-aerobic activity. You have to maintain some almost constant motion to avoid your aged body locking into any one position. Moving from the standard slump with elbows on knees, to an unnaturally upright position that would make any Catholic school nun proud. Shifting weight from one bony butt cheek to the other, trying to alleviate that uncomfortable lower body tingle.
I love my kids. I love watching them compete. But kids should realize that when the parents all stand up and cheer for a race, while we are excited about what’s happening in the pool, we are far more grateful for an excuse to stand. Look closely. While one hand may be pumping the air in celebration, the other is clutching the lower back trying desperately to force our butts somewhere under our shoulders again. The smile on our face is partly happiness for your victory, but mostly because we can feel the sweet circulation of blood through our numb buttocks and into our legs.
I’ve learned much as a parent. But mostly that I’m old and ass-less.