The 10 hardest feats in sports -- for the rest of the world

March 09, 2003|By Susan Reimer

USA Today has just concluded a 10-part series on the 10 hardest things to do in sports, leaving off one of the most difficult: living with my husband, the USA Today sportswriter, while he worked on this project.

Men tend to talk about their work more than women do. That may be because women have many jobs, while men just have the one.

For weeks, I listened patiently to his recitation of the apples-and-oranges difficulty of comparing sports feats: downhill skiing vs. running a marathon; landing a quad in figure skating vs. returning one of Pete Sampras' serves.

How do you rank such diverse skills?

And who decides?

The whining got so intense in my house that I am sure he did not notice when I went to the mall because it was still going on when I got home.

In frustrated response, I have come up with my own list of the 10 hardest things to do in sports. It took me 10 minutes, I didn't consult a single expert, and the list is complete in this one edition of this newspaper.

Here it is:

1. Sitting in gymnasium bleachers for 10 hours waiting for your son to wrestle.

2. Watching your son wrestle.

3. Working the concession stand at halftime of a high school football game.

4. Desperately searching for the "away" team jersey (substitute "mouth guard" or "other team sock") 10 minutes before your child has to be at the game.

5. Remembering when it is your turn to bring the post-game treat.

6. Attending your children's games when one child is playing at one end of the county and the other is playing at the other end of the county at the same time.

7. Finding the money in the budget for sports camps, clinics, travel teams and new equipment.

8. Learning that your child's best friend made varsity, but your child did not.

9. Hearing another parent in the stands criticizing your child.

And, the No. 1 hardest thing to do in sports:

10. Sitting in the hospital emergency room while they take your child for an X-ray.

It's 'almost done'

March is National Craft Month, and Susan Reimer is looking for the reader with the oldest unfinished craft project or the most unfinished craft projects. Send your stories to, and please include a home phone number.

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