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Saturday, December 12, 2020

Like Father Like Son


Like Father Like Son


It’s a football story, ladies, nothing to see here.  Except, who knows, you might like it. Naw, probably not…but maybe

Have you ever wondered what goes on in a football pile up after a fumble? 

Well, I will tell you anyway.

When the football is loose, everyone dives on the pile to recover it.  The referee can in no way know who has possession of the ball until he removes players from the pile one by one until he can see who has the ball.   While this is going on, players in the pile are trying to rip the ball away from whoever actually recovered the fumble.

About one hundred years ago, while a young Cranky was in Jr. High School, eighth grade for those keeping track, I was involved in one of those fumble recovery pileups.

Actually, I was not initially in the pile up.  I was standing by while the referee was removing players one by one.  While he was doing this, I could see who had the ball, and his jersey color was different from the one I was wearing.

I got down on one knee and slowly worked my way into the pile from the opposite side as the ref.  I managed to slip a hand on the ball, and then another and by the time the referee pulled everyone off I had stollen the ball from its rightful owner.

Possession goes to Cranky’s team!

Many years later, I was telling my eight-year-old son, who was in his first year of Pop Warner Football, about my years ago gridiron robbery.

“Isn’t that cheating?”

“Only if you get caught, and then there is no penalty, you just don’t get the ball.”

His very next game, there was a fumble and a large pile up over the ball.  As the referee began to remove players from the pile, my son snuck up, got on his knees and wiggled his way into the pile.  By the time the ref removed everyone, my son had wrestled the ball away from its rightful possessor.  He was credited with the recovery and his team got the ball.

I tell you it was one of my proudest moments as a Dad!





  1. Different game, but when 3M was eight, I took him to a game of the local minor-league baseball team. I noticed the catcher 'framing' pitches (ie, 'sliding' his glove to make a ball look like a strike),and I pointed it out to my son, since he was a catcher for his little league team.

    So, his next game, I saw him take a pitch just outside the strike zone, and 'slide' it into the strike zone. The ump was a teenager making maybe $20/game, and might not have seen a kid 'frame' a pitch before, much less an 8-year-old. So he duly rung up the poor batter, and 3M looked at me, smiling, while I about fell on the ground laughing. . .

  2. I am still not familiar with all the rules of this game.

  3. ...and that is only one of the things that goes on in the pile [DAMHIK]

  4. Always wondered and suspected it was just as you said. Some how I thought there were no rules and who ever got the ball by what ever means was good to go. In my book both Cranky and son were legal, if sneaky.

    1. Trust me, there are no safe body parts buried in the pile, away from the ref's eyes. . .

      I never got bit in a pile, but I know guys who were. . .

  5. I love this! He learned from you and got that ball!

  6. I know nothing about football. But this did make me laugh!

  7. As i have said, every sport, even if it is not one of which i am a fan, requires lots of skill and knowledge and finesse and techniques i can admire.

    You and your son were quite brilliant there.

  8. And so begins a life of crime! :^D

  9. I guess it's worth a try, since there's no penalty. The worse that could happen is that you don't get the ball, which you didn't have anyway until IT!

  10. haha

    oh this was so funny ,your story how you would get ball made me laugh
    you were so clever indeed dear Joe
    haha how amazing your son proved himself a fast learner lol

  11. That is a great story and every parent can understand (but not admit to it).