Can it be true? Can it be done? Unfortunately, I have NO CHOICE.
This weekend is dedicated to my other (third?) all-consuming hobby - Soccer Referee. I've been addicted to this since the World Cup back in 2002. I enjoy telling the story of late nights (drifting off only to re-awaken, bleary-eyed, to the image of Bruce Arena in the press booth), early mornings (stop yelling or you'll wake the baby!) and the loss of one *very good* bottle of wine all combining to make me think, "Huh. Maybe this is the way I get in to a referee outfit." I sent an email to my local AYSO Region and the rest is history.
I've got a three goals this season - all of which, I think, are achievable. After 5 full seasons running around with teams from U-little all the way up to amateur men's, it's time for me to get serious and really test myself. While two of my three goals have to wait until the Fall season to get started (more on that in August, or so), my first one gets underway tonight.
I want to be a USSF Referee Instructor.
Yup, I want to make more of me. I want more WOMEN referees. After two Mechanical Engineering degrees and more than 15 years in the "real world", I can hold my own with pretty much any group of guys. However, the fact that I'm looking around the conference room table and I'm the only one in a skirt (Utilikilts are more prevalent at Apple than at my current place of employ) is a wee bit disheartening. I get that same "darn" feeling looking around the referee shack/tent/tree as well. There are not enough of us - and whether I want to be or not, I'm a role model for the youngers coming up. If they see me, maybe they'll be more confident. Also, with an Instructor Certificate, my opportunity to mentor and guide young women expands.
So - I'm heading off to a weekend of Laws, presentations, techniques and assessments that will (hopefully) turn me into an Associate Referee Instructor. And, given that classes run from 9a -6p every day, with a ~40 minute commute, and homework to prepare presentations and the like, I don't think I'll get to knit. Heck I'm hoping to have time to run!
Tonight is the State Referee Exam (this also helps meet goal #2) - and I need a score of 85% to pass. Wish me luck, everyone!