The Rusty Gloves

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Sports  |  House: Booksie Classic

I saw some rusty goal posts one day and viola! I used to be a goalie myself. If you can relate to this please let me know! I hope you enjoy!:)

~~
We slowly made our way from the car, me carrying the sack of soccer balls and Nate dragging the cooler full of gatorade, grapes, and all sorts of snacks behind him. We fell into our usual routine. My soccer cleats beat against the ground making dull, sorry imitations of horses running on a pasture. Nate’s slides smoothly stroked the concrete as he walked next to me, and our beat up cooler bumped alongside us like a tortious.

We were walking through a barren wasteland of concrete passing the deserted school building. Just when you thought you’d never see green again, the soccer field came into view. It was brand spanking new, and full of new growth which is a good sign. The faster the grass grows after being put in, the more resilient it will be during the rainy part of the season where players will be digging colossal holes and ripping the fields shaggy carpet to shreds. Courtesy of a few rich parents and the sponsor of a retired professional soccer player - your’s truly - they were able to afford a field that was actually playable. The new grass was just barely trimmed and the air smelled earthy and new, like the field. It lifted the atmosphere of the otherwise sorry excuse of Dayton High School.

It smelled like game day.

But of course it wasn’t game day, there wouldn’t be anymore game days. Nate dropped the cooler with a thud and the icy contents sloshed around the inside walls. He started lacing his soccer cleats on and I opened the mesh bag of soccer balls, emptying the bag and sending the balls in every direction. I once again marveled at the beauty of the new field. There were no holes from a thousand different cleats being dug into them over dozens of seasons, or permanent mud holes from storms that even the extreme heat waves couldn’t extinguish. The grass was not brown and dead anymore, but full of freshly planted life, asking to get played with. The blades danced in the warm lazy breeze. I could hear the bright starch white net stretched over the brand new goal posts whisper to me and call for me to protect them from enemy teams. I nudged a ball and it moved almost silently on a fresh cushion of green. The sun was blazing and I could feel my skin reddening from it already but the constant soft breeze kept the burn at bay.

Nate was up and moving, he gracefully dribbled the back and forth across the field getting warmed up. I followed suit in silence, savoring this moment of peace. I was running on a cozy blanket, burritoing myself up in it’s comfort. After a few minutes, Nate gathered the balls together like a herd of sheep and he while he gathered I pulled on my well worn goalie gloves. Without a word we made our way to our battle stations, ready to compete against one another even though we were the closest people on this planet. I took my stance two steps in front of the goal post line, Nate already had the balls in a neat line ready to strike. He juggled the ball a few times before launching it towards me - well not me, but the goal. I deflected it with a lunge to the right and it bounced off the goal post.

It was then that I truly noticed the goal post. They were just as new as the rest of the field, beaming and perfect. They came in just a few days ago replacing the old ones I had used in high school. Now they down at the other end of the field grouped together awaiting the arrival of the garbage truck that would dismantle them and throw them away. This sudden realization really upset me, I was extremely bothered at the fact that they were getting rid of my goals. I learned to be a goalie from those posts. Shouldn’t they get as much fame as me? They basically created the soccer player that I am. Nate shot another at me, but I hardly notice it soar past into the white, unstained nylon goal.

“Patrick, are you okay?” Nate asked pausing in between kicks. The ball I had miss rolled back in between my feet bumping against my ankle protectors attached to my shin guards, it reminded me where I was and I was forced to rip my gaze away from my beloved goal.

“Uh, yeah. I just noticed the old goal posts.” I said, more talking to myself than Nate.

“Yeah, they were getting pretty trashy. There were so many holes in the net and the posts are covered in rust. It was about time they got rid of them and bought some newer posts.” He said, not really paying attention to them or my reaction to them. My gaze had returned to the posts but his comment brought another realization to my mind.

I was eight years older than my younger brother Nate. He was a senior this year, and was recruited to play for Florida State. He was easily the best player in his league and was more than capable of dominating D1. I reflected back to when the U.S. International Team asked me to retire. I had needed surgery and would be out the rest of the season. I tore my meniscus and would have to wear a brace for the rest of my career. I was considered an old player, used, old, and outdated. They told me they needed fresh blood, newer inexperienced players in order to build their dream team in the future. I couldn’t be apart of that, I had already had my fifteen minutes in the lime light. Looking at Nate and comparing us, he was a brand new soccer field with shiny goal posts and a brand new net. I was the forgotten JV field, with craters dug into them and rust coating the exterior. He was the next generation, and I couldn’t be apart of it.
“You’re totally right, Nate. It’s about time.” I said and walked off the field. I walked past the cooler and the empty sack past the old goal posts, my old self, and Nate. He called out to me and started gathering our stuff hastily so he could catch up to me, but I kept walking, never looking back on what would be the future of soccer. The future I could have no part in.


Submitted: January 25, 2015

© Copyright 2020 ThePatriotsDaughter. All rights reserved.

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Comments

James Felton

Great Story! :D

Tue, February 17th, 2015 3:22pm

Author
Reply

Thank you!

Wed, March 25th, 2015 10:34am

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