Saturday, June 22, 2013

it was an interesting leighann palmer this year.

guys i just really want to blog about game of thrones because i watched two episodes today with my family.

"the family that watches game of thrones together stays together."

but i realise that there are people out there that don't watch game of thrones or that don't read the books and that don't want the first episodes ruined for them by me screaming

DOTHRAKI BOOOOOOOTY whenever khal drogo and daenerys have awkward sex.

so i'm going to blog about leighann palmer. again. because that was a thing today.

for those of you who weren't with me last year (or the year before) or for those of you who have no idea who i am and you just stumbled upon my blog (welcome!), leighann palmer is the second longest day of my summer.

it's a ten and under swimming invitational that i coach. leighann palmer was a little girl that drowned in avalon pool when she was three. the meet commemorates her by having a meet for young kids and teaching them the importance of sportmanships and learning to swim.

every year leighann's parents speak about their daughter and the meet. she would've been twenty-four this year.

every year i cry.

but leighann palmer is always a very long and hot meet and full of screaming children. because they're all under the age of ten.

my alarm went off at four fifty five am (after i went to bed at one) and my phone was screaming LEIGHANN PALMER YO and i dragged my ass out of bed, showered, slathered myself in sunscreen, and scrambled myself some eggs.

i ate breakfast at five thirty in the morning with my dad, who was up bright and early for a 52 mile bike race with my mom and my grandpa. we ate mostly in silence because my dad was reading the paper.

we were silent until i realised that the cheese that i melted on my scrambled eggs was covered in taco seasoning.


what a way to start the morning.

the twins swung by at five til six and we were off to starbucks in our matching shirts yet again, asking for the three largest java chips that they had and getting google maps directions from my phone that we wished sounded like an australian man, because avalon pool is out by the airport and that is far away as hell.

we got there before any of the other teams. luckily, our tent arrived early, so we laid out the tarp, set up the tent, set up camp, and became a quick meal for thousands of mosquitoes.

seven fifteen am. while clutching starbucks and my sunglasses, we led our fourteen children to the blocks for warm ups. i always curse early warm ups because the kids get cold and other teams haven't even arrived yet.

we'd already been at the pool for forty-five minutes and people were still arriving.

but no one arrived quite like sean arrived.

after warm ups we were sitting under the tent highlighting our heat sheets to see when our kids were swimming when suddenly sean drove his truck straight behind the pool and into the tent area.

i'd obviously been live tweeting the meet and this ensued.

@emilyyxh: sean just rolled in behind the pool in a truck and i can't

while sean was rolling his truck behind the pool and in danger of running over children, emma and i noticed that one of the team's tents wasn't a plain tent.

it was a miller lite tent. totally kid appropriate.

the meet began with a bang, and by that i mean we lined up our only relay and stood behind some awkward sycamore eight and unders that were really really excited about SWAC. like, excited enough that this kid screamed, "THREE OF THE FOUR KIDS ON MY RELAY SWIM FOR SWAC!"

cool story, kid.

after the IM, while the sun rose and the air heated up to a nice and balmy ninety degrees and i rolled my sleeves up, i learned a surprising fact.

hannah has three kidneys.

wiggity whaaaaat?

hannah: yeah i totally have three kidneys.
me: i gotta put that in my blog.

mission accomplished.

as the meet wore on, emma and i spotted umbrella man, a man with a rainbow umbrella hat.

he looked pretty much like this.

including the fumanchu.

is that even how you spell that? whatever. I JUST DID.

the meet began to absolutely fly by, which was awesome, because it's seriously a really long and hot meet full of children that are all under the age of ten and i don't think you quite understand how exhausting that is.

three years ago it was about ninety-four degrees and the meet started at eight and went until three in the afternoon.

like, how does that even happen?

this year, the meet was projected to end at twelve thirty, and we were well on our way there. and with only fourteen kids, we had lots of breaks to go sit in the bug-infested shade, eat food, and tweet.

when i go to big meets like this, i take my dad's really badass camping chair that just shouts, I AM A BOYSCOUT MASTER! and a huge cooler and i stuff it full of food and water. 

so i sat down in my dad's badass scout master chair, opened up my cooler, and got out a little pudding pack and a plastic spoon.

i was instantly surrounded by seven eight year olds shouting, PUDDING! PUDDING! PUDDING!

whenever we have big meets and we get up at five in the morning to coach them, the twins and i have a mantra while we buy our starbucks.

it goes


when i had a bunch of hungry children looking at my pudding i was like, NOPE. NOT FOR THE CHILDREN.

emily teaches children a valuable life lesson: people generally do not share their food with you. no matter how much you whine.

emily learns a valuable life lesson: lock your cooler when you have more than one pudding cup when surrounded by hungry children. 

when i came back for the second cup, i realised something really intense.

my pudding was glittery.

who the hell makes glittery pudding?!

they do, apparently.

the meet rolled on, absolutely flying by, and the sun kept rising along with the temperature, and soon i was dealing with boob sweat and knee brace sweat.

and of course, my intense knee brace tanline.

emma's left knee was acting up. i was wearing her knee brace, she was wearing my knee brace, and we ran into a middle aged gentleman who said, "knee brace twins!"

me: yeah! i tore my meniscus!
emma: my knee is acting up.
random dude: you guys trying to be twins?
me: no, but emma actually has a twin over there.
emma: (points at hannah)
random dude: ARE YOU KIDDING ME

knee brace and toms twins. fo lyfe.

shortly after this conversation, one of our swimmers (almost simultaneously) broke hannah's camping chair and lost a tooth.

then her younger brother lost a tooth. 

sometimes i forget that people lose teeth. like, i haven't lost any teeth in so long that when my swimmers lose theirs i'm like, WHAT IS HAPPENING GO SEE A DENTIST AHHHHH.

when i went back to the tent, i found our singular nine year old boy and our singular seven year old boy marrying each other.

it was a beautiful ceremony that involved grass rings and them professing their undying love for each other.

when i told my dad this later, he said, "mad props to them for doing it in indiana where it's illegal."

toward the end of the meet, i came face to face with an eight year old girl who really didn't like to swim.

she did her entire twenty-five freestyle with her face out of the water, refusing to get it wet. her mom and her coach met her at the end of the lane where i was standing and pulled her out of the pool with hugs and congratulations, like i do after all of my kids' races. 

when this girl got out of the pool and wrapped up in a towel and hugs, she promptly burst into tears and shouted, "I DON'T WANNA DO THE RELAY!"

fifteen minutes later, i was back at the end of the lane and watching her struggle down the lane, her face out of the water, clearly crying. i felt super bad for her but i was really proud that was she was swimming again, that she was going for it.

when she got to the finish, she climbed out of the pool, threw herself flat on the ground and began to scream.

that girl was 300% done, which is how i feel about life and school most of the time.

during the last relay, emma and i looked over the horizon in this beautiful stance of "the meet is almost done and we will be home by lunchtime without serious sunburns" and what did we see?

a fire truck. spraying water everywhere.


we never actually found the fire. by the time the meet was over, the fire truck was long gone. i figured somebody's car had exploded and we were just all too busy cheering for our kids to notice.

the meet ended with the same big bang that it started with, and that was with relays. because parker wasn't at the meet we couldn't participate in the coach's relay, but we cheered.

then we tore down the tent, took a cute picture of little five year olds swimming after ducks, and managed to shove everything into hannah and emma's trunk.

then we blasted mambo number five on the highway.

it was righteous.


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