Soccer is not the state sport in Louisiana, my home state, but it is getting more popular all the time. Kids are starting very young, in elementary school, so they have pretty good skills by the time they reach college age. My daughter has been consistently playing for years and I wouldn’t think of missing a game. I even plan to visit her even though she is a bit far away. It is worth a day’s drive to see my girl do her best for the team. I want to take a surprise gift: a new ball, billed as the “best in the world” by Top Corner Magazine I guess there is only one way to find out. I will take her word for it. I hope she goes for the gesture. I want to show my love and support in a way that appeals to her adult needs.

I put in some real research effort to find this soccer ball and get it in time to take with me to the upcoming game. No expense was spared. Your kid is in college only once. I was planning to bestow it on her right before so she could use it. At dinner, we would discuss how it performed, although I would certainly see the results for myself. The celebration meal was as good as the game. She is more than an average player and scored well over all. The best part was that the team won and no small credit went to the new ball. I was a proud papa to be sure.

We relished our food as we replayed the game in our minds and shared the joy of our camaraderie. I was pleased to see that she still eats as much as always, and pours hot sauce on everything—just like I taught her. She said she missed the food at home (real food she says) since she was on a team training regimen. There is a sacrifice when it comes to college or pro sports. You would think that the players burn off the calories during practice and the final game would boost the count even more. But she had to do what the coach instructed. Dinner with dad was a rare treat.

I promised to come to the finals, if the team qualified, and that we would have another fine supper after. I would bring the bottle of hot sauce again to make sure that the taste was up to her standards. She is a true child of mine. I raised her right, not with a silver spoon, but with some great Louisiana spice.