What A Fool Believes*

I haven’t posted an update on my life in a long time. Therefore, I presume many of you have made assumptions about my life. And you know what happens when you assume… You make a story in your head. Some of those stories might include:

1.    Joining the circus as a traveling headband spinner (the plate guys got the boot) 
2.    Being the 8th Wonder of the World  
3.    Starting a cat farm with my mom

Training with FC Kansas City during the day, while partaking in intense improv sessions at night and all the while realizing that in life, you can have more than one calling. 

Yeah. You heard that right. I’m being called upon, sucka. 

So here’s the thing. I was waived from the Washington Spirit two weeks after my host family’s house burned down. Heard that right. 

Photo Credit: Sam Weber 

Photo Credit: Sam Weber 

I went home for a few weeks and figured out some things in my life. The first thing I figured out was that I need to play soccer forever. I wanted to go to the best environment no matter what that meant for me logistically. The decision was easy: FCKC. 

Well and the fact that Yael Averbuch begged me to come here. Apparently she needed more friends. But that’s a story for another day. 

The welcome I received from the FCKC staff and players was exactly what I needed. I have never been one to say stuff like “I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be,” or “things happen for a reason,” so I won’t say it now. Alright? 

If March could be described as a bit traumatic then April and May could be described as a rebirth. Not in the serious way that it sounds, but in the fun way that my brain has found a totally new way of working and my laughter cords (similar to the vocal ones) are getting the most exercise they’ve gotten since I lived with Carmelina Moscato and she used to prank call our teammates at Penn State. If anyone ever wants to hear those skits, I’m sure Carm would gladly replay them.

Regardless, the rebirth has happened. I recently stepped away from Our Game Magazine. The club I had worked with for the past five years is folding and for the first time in many years I feel … free? Free to say yes to more. Free to create. Free to do nothing. Free to be ridiculous again. Because I am ridiculous. My brain is ridiculous. 

So that brings me to our night time hobbies here in Kansas City. Throughout my life I get these strong urges to do things. I can’t ignore them. Sometimes it’s to drive straight home after a 7pm game in DC. Sometimes it’s buy a pair of shoes. Sometimes it’s simple like getting the Play Station out from under my bed, hooking it all up and playing Guitar Hero after not playing for four years. 

Okay so this one, this is a big one. This is like the urge to play soccer for the rest of my life, which I will do. I have learned two things very well. I feel most alive when I’m playing soccer and also when I’m making people laugh. The first one was always very obvious. The second one took a little more digging. But these two things are sacred to me. They’re not the reasons I get up in the morning, but they are the reasons I jump up in the morning.

Whether anyone thinks I’m funny or not is irrelevant. I read an article today that said this:

“By plopping yourself into a steaming heap of wannabe comedians, you will forever know that you tried. What a relief to rid yourself of the “what ifs.” Man, I know people who won’t even eat an ice cream cone when they want one, so good on you for having the courage and drive to actually pick up, move or enroll in a class just because you wanted to. You are not delusional for seeing something you thought would make you happy and walking towards it. Anyone who tells you otherwise, including you, is a mondo fun-plug.
You know who is delusional? People who didn’t try. Haven’t we all had that experience where we tell someone that we do comedy, and they’re like, “Oh, yeah, I did an acting class in college. I was actually pretty good. I might have been a professional…if I hadn’t decided to sell urinary deficiency pills instead.” (Real-life conversation I had last week with a bro at the gym.)
You know why those people never went for it? Because by not going for it, they get to keep the daydream possibility that if they had tried–they *would have* succeeded. That’s arrogance. But you put yourself in the trenches of rejection. You explore your boundaries. You survive parties that devolve into 95 BPM* conversations. That’s the opposite of delusional. That’s the real deal.”

So I know that was long. Thank you if you read it all. If you didn’t, here’s the gist. I don’t want to regret anything. I want to do things I really enjoy. And I really enjoy comedy. 

Some of my idols are Tina Fey, Carol Burnett, Lucille Ball, Kristen Wiig and Cecily Strong. I wish I could be on SNL. I wouldn’t mind having my own show. Sometimes I just want training to stop so everyone could hear my jokes. 

At night, the ladies of FCKC have been putting on improv sessions. What’s improv you ask? It’s acting, without much of a plan. We come up with scenes, find characters that work for people and act out really funny situations. And folks, we’re pretty decent at it. Yael, Heather O’Reilly, Shea Groom, Alex Arlitt and Bri Reed are some of the major players in the show. I’m the star. HAO has one of the best characters. Shea is really dramatic in her roles. We think we can take the show on the road to be perfectly honest. Maybe we’ll even film some. 

Anyway, I don’t know where I’m going in life. I know that I just had to make some really important decisions that changed the trajectory of it. So, no, I’m not done playing. Please stop asking me. When I’m done playing you will all know because I will have a grand exit. My life has changed a lot in the past year. For the best. I feel like for the first time in a long time I’m on the path to the best version of myself. The version that, despite all its flaws, does whatever the eff it wants and drinks coffee after 5pm. The one that knows defeat makes it better. 

One of the best messages I have received in the past two months came from a kid I have coached. She’s 18 years old. She wrote: “I’ve seen the Dark Knight trilogy enough times to know that Batman gets back up every time he gets punched in the face or thrown off a building.” 

I don’t plan on just getting up. I plan on being the superhero everyone deserves and the one I’ve always wanted to be.

*What A Fool Believes is a song by The Doobie Brothers. I recommend listening.