Tuesday, November 08, 2005

I'm available

Well, no major refereeing issues in the past few weeks (although Randy Cross was bitching about officials having conferences...would you rather they make decisions hastily, Randy?). Also, Bahrain doesn't play soccer until Saturday, so my strange role as Bahrain Soccer Update Central has gone quiet. In other words, there hasn't been any need for any posts.

Now, however, I'm but a few weeks away from a new season. Our association has already had its first meeting. And yesterday, I posted my availability (the dates I will be available for games). I can now tell you what days I'll be refereeing for November and December.

Availability is a tricky issue. I don't want to overextend myself...if I'm reffing so often that it's not fun anymore, that doesn't help anyone. On the other hand, I need to stay fresh, and I want to stay on my assignor's good side, so I don't want to underextend, either.

The net result: five available days between now and Thanksgiving (probably won't be games on all of them, but I could use a few rec games to get the body, mind, and eyes in shape again). I'll then work an average of two nights between M-Th, every Friday night except one, and only one Saturday.

I've had professional commitments on many Friday nights for the last seven years, which has made me less than popular with the assignors, since every high school in the US is playing ball on Friday nights, which means we're perpetually shorthanded. Working every Friday will give me plenty of games, including a better possibility of good ones, and will make it so that my assignor will more likely be on my good side.

Of course, any good will I gain with Friday availability will be squandered by my choice to not work on weekends. The "traveling leagues" and "select leagues" play on Saturdays and Sundays, along with CYO ball. I don't especially mind those games, but I'd like to spend at least a little bit of time vegging on the couch, hanging out with friends and family, working around the house, and (most importantly) watching the NFL. So I'll give one Saturday a month, but that's about it.

Next up: taking the rules test.


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