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Mr “I live vicariously through my child”

Roger was a former Under 16’s rising star who suckled from the sweet half time orange slice of success until one day he stopped growing. In the game of genetic musical chairs, not everyone gets a seat when the music stops. Some have to wait at the kiddy table until the party was over.

If you ask him about his footy career though he will tell you he came so close, which is more than his wife can say who has pretended to enjoy the limp linguine of a loser lapping around her bowl for the last 5 years. Safe to say, Roger was as washed up as a decapitated head on a Rotto shore.

Everything changed when Roger’s son was finally old enough to be enrolled in AusKick. Roger was born anew in purpose. The only problem was that a coach had already been selected. What a load of fucking bullshit, it was like asking Thor to hold the nail steady while Captain America hammered it in.

Not to worry, Roger knew if he just rocked up in a tracksuit and a clipboard and stood near the coaching huddle he could throw in unsolicited quips of advice. Also, he would send weekly emails to the “coach” questioning every decision he made.

The season rolled on as predictably as could be. A bunch of goofy kids having fun, sausages sizzling and Roger making such a big arsehole of himself on the sideline that the gape created a blackhole vortex sucking any ounce of fun from the team’s day.

During a game, an umpire calls a high tackle against Roger’s son that results in the winning goal. Roger steams onto the field like Clive Palmer after a fresh tray of potato gems were brought out at Sizzler. The white corner mouth residue of raging frothery is building up as he grabs the umpire by the throat and they punch on.

After the shameful fracas, Roger made his kid sit in the backseat, drove to the nearest park and held a 1-hour 45-minute tackle training session to make sure his kid doesn’t fuck up and ruin the family name again.

As the season drew to an end, Roger became more obsessed and in a bold move circulated a rumour that the coach fucked his secretary and on grand final day let the air out of his tyres. With the coach running late, Roger boldly put his hand up to step in.

After an hour of berating, screaming and threatening gestures from Roger the team posted a win. Roger talked to the local community journalist like he’d just won an AFL premiership. “That’s what happens when you play a proper brand of footy”. His entire manhood reprieved in the footnote of a newsletter no one will ever read.

To Roger, the day will live on forever and let’s just say, the tomato sauce wasn’t the only thing that squirted when somebody called him to coach around the BBQ after the game. Pathetic.

Documenting the Human Zoo is thirsty work, so if you enjoyed what you read how about buying Belle a beer, ay?

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