Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Answering your mail -- starting with Mr. Rosary

Delaware Dave is back:
Great pics of the kids in Tianamenn. The kids look happy. It sounds like they are getting into the adventure of it all.

You will be happy to know that Holy Rosary took down Mr. Aviat from Elkton, MD this weekend. Scott, the head coach, was at the Eagles game and handed over the reigns to his trusty assistant Delaware Dave. After tweeking the starting lineup we dominated the Maryland girls and won handily. Emma served flawlessly and passed the ball with precision. It was obvious that her blood line included a father who was MVP of the 1980 Taylor Allderdice men's team and an uncle who later started for the Dragons. We have a tough match this Sunday against Immaculate Heart of Mary (no joke).

Coaching girls is different than boys for many reasons. The boys focus on winning and meltdown if they screw up. Especially in baseball. They put a lot of pressure on themselves and you can see big tough kids crying at shortstop if they make an error or strike out. The girls are concerned about what they are wearing, who is on the other team, who is watching.... At some level they care if they win but not as viscerally. Although they have more fun if they win, they really just have fun playing and it is more of a social event for them. There instincts are also not as strong. You really have to coach them to go after the ball, they are too polite thinking that someone else will probably get it.

DP
PS: a pic of the holy rosary team to follow in a few days


Hey, that picture goes straight up here, no questions asked. I have not seen that level of intensity in my coaching career yet, but Jacob is only 7.5. We did have one kid burst into tears when he allowed a goal last week. His porcine father was standing right next to the goal, staring over at him. That didn't help. Parents in general are much more mellow here, however. That guy was american.

And a host of questions from Dan Cohen

Has Jacob really stopped watching TV?

Yes. For now. Really wild. And there has been no discussion of it. It is like a four-pack-a-day smoker just suddenly stopping without mentioning it to anyone. I just found out we actually don’t have Cartoon Network here, as they do at River Garden, where we were living. But he hasn’t tried to figure that out. And we do have Nickelodean.

Why do the locals seem to be more obsessed with Anna than your other little blond children?
Good question. They are also really into Jacob and Eli – especially Jacob’s hair. But I think Anna is just so little and cute, she looks like a doll. I discussed this with a Chinese teaching assistant in Eli’s class and she said, “Of course. She looks like a Barbie doll.”


What does your chef do on the other nights, and can he make me some food and fed-ex it here (only after you guys are well-fed of course)?
He works for other families. He’s good, but he’s not that good – you live in New York, Danny. Jump in a cab and got o Bayard St.


Now that you can drive, what happens to Mr. Dou?
Are you kidding me? First, we don’t have our licenses yet. We are just in progress. Second, driving here is a contact sport and there is no parking downtown. Driving will be key for going to soccer games, grocery stores, playdates, weekend outings, etc. But Mr. Dou is an employs of the WS Journal. His job really is just getting Becky to work and back and to any appointments. He drives other reporters, etc. too. (Or will when there are some.)

What's your address? I have a present to send you.
That’s what I’m talking about.
Villa 62A
No. 1, Xiang Jiang North Road
Chaoyang District. Beijing
100103, China.

Or if it’s really important, send to Becky’s office.

Wall Street Journal
Full Link Plaza Tower A, Suite 2001-2004
No. 18 Chaoyangmenwai Ave.
Beijing 10020
China