There are some words in the English language that I always have trouble spelling. Sometimes they are big scary words like “zenzizenzizenic”, but it is just as often everyday words like “tomorrow” – seriously, is it 2 M’s, or 2 R’s, or both?
Thanks to modern word processing technology this has become easy to fix in the short term; but, unfortunately, you won’t remember it tomorrow.
It just so happens, coincidentally or not, that the theme, and title, of this very post is one of those words that I can never seem to spell correctly on the first try: miscellaneous. My hope is that, in the end, I will be able to spell the word without second guessing myself and relying on word-check. That, of course, is only the secondary purpose of this article. Entertaining and informing you about my miscellaneous lifestyle is always my primary goal.
The best part about the word miscellaneous is that it covers all bases. This also makes it pretty much useless in certain circumstances. I doubt, for instance, you could use it as an alibi in a court of law. Imagine this conversation:
Prosecuter: “Where were you on the night of March 1st?”
Defendent: “I was at a number of miscellaneous locations”
Prosecuter: “And what was it that you were doing there?”
Defendent: “miscellaneous stuff”
Likely verdict = Guilty
Don’t tell my Dad, but my brother Francis, my friend Mike, and I used the word far too often to explain our activities when we were working for him. Miscellaneous, or “Misc.” for short (yea they can’t spell it either) was often used as the explanation for anything from digging a ditch to “testing” the jet-ski after its spring check-up.
To be fair to us, there were some workdays that were extremely miscellaneous. You just can’t fit; “mowed lawn, stained deck, moved logs – again, tidied up shed – again, cleaned windows; went to store to buy 3 nuts and washers, 1 bag of quick-rete, 4 1/2 two-by-fours, 3 one inch PVC elbows, wood glue; and then finally, fixed the toilet…and made sure it worked”, into a one line explanation on an hour sheet.
“Misc. and used the fixed toilet” pretty much says it all.
You’ve probably guessed by now, but if you were still wondering, my life is currently very miscellaneous. Although that is a fairly accurate answer, I realize it is far from informative. Since I have more than one line on an employee hours sheet, I will try to elaborate upon what the miscellaneous life of a want to be footballer in England is all about.
Surprise, surprise! One of the things I do is play soccer/football. I train once or twice a week with the team, depending on our game schedule. If we have two games in a week, we only train once, if we only have one game we train twice. Training sessions are usually sharp and enjoyable.
The team has recently hit a rough patch of form in games. In our last 5 games we have only won 1, tied 2, and lost 2. Though we are still sitting in second place in the standings, the leaders have a very commanding grasp of first place. Mathmatically speaking we could still catch them, but realistically, it is their title to lose.
I wrote an article on the team website about going through tough times in a season, and from what I’ve heard, it’s worth a read 😉
I have not been getting much game time myself which, of course, is frustrating. However, it is a situation I have personally been in before – and to be honest, most players who play at a high-level, have been in it before. If you don’t let it break you, it will make you.
I believe that one of my problems, as well as one of my strengths, is my versatility. In other words, my position on the field is – wait for it – miscellaneous. I can and have played in every position on the pitch. I was even thrown in goal in High-School once (not recommended). This can be a huge benefit to a team, but it can be hard for the player. If you are back-up to everyone, then you are in front of no one and thus one of the last on the team sheet.
In more general terms; “a jack of all trades is a master of nothing”. I’m working hard to become a master of all trades and a jack of nothing!
As always, I have been taking care of myself outside of the team sessions to make sure I am ready when needed. I joined a gym last month for this reason and visit it at least four times a week.
There are plenty of miscellaneous things for me to do there that help me stay fit and healthy; some of my favorite activities are lifting, swimming, sitting in the sauna, and yoga class!
Yes, you heard it, I started yoga class. So far, I find it a good supplement for the other work that I do. It helps considerably with flexibility and works out little muscles that I often find cause nagging injuries (ie: hip flexors). My opinion is obviously developing, but so far so good!
The most important thing is that I get my touches in with the football. Most days when I don’t have training I try to get at least 1000 touches on the ball. I do all kinds of miscellaneous drills to get them in and find that repetition of basic skills is extremely helpful in being comfortable and confident on the ball in a game environment.
I am still working part-time in the Physical Education department at the local school. It has been going well and is a great learning experience for me on many different levels.
My responsibilities are, you guessed it, pretty much miscellaneous. I do focus on helping out primarily with the football, but since it is not football during every period – which it arguably should be – I get to help out with other sports as well. As often as not, I am learning as well as teaching. Luckily there are some overriding themes throughout all sports that can be taught regardless of one’s knowledge of their specific rules and regulations: honesty, teamwork, sportsmanship, hard-work, and humility…just to name a few.
I also took over the year 10 (about Freshman in High-school) school football team, which I really enjoy. They got themselves into a stick of trouble earlier in the year and thus lost game privileges, so it is just training for now. So far they have been excellent and if they keep up the good work, I am hoping they can earn a few games later in the year.
One of highlights from the last few weeks has also been going to the driving range with a lucky group of lads, who are doing an extra golfing credit. There is a qualified instructor who runs the show, I just reinforce his words, while improving my short game!
Overall, it is nice to work with smaller groups than usual and see firsthand improvement in their golfing and/or football skills, as well as their attitudes and personal development.
Thanks to the internet, I am able to continue to work for my Dad all the way over here in England. Although I can’t fix toilets anymore, I help him with the bookings at his many beautiful vacation rentals. It is a good opportunity for me and gives me valuable business experiences, particularly in customer service.
It also is a constant reminder of home. Every time I book someone in I am jealous of them, because I want to be them, on vacation in the Shenandoah Valley, relaxing in the sun on the Shenandoah River.
It’s an easy sell.
I can’t wait to go back home!
Until then, check back here for more info on these miscellaneous thoughts of mine.
As always, go head-first!
PS: For the record, I have never ever used “zenzizenzizenic” in a spoken or written sentence. It means a number raised to the eighth power. I just found it on this obscure word website, and there is some ridiculous words worth remembering on there!