"The door is open to anybody who wants to attempt this," says Linda Bache, general manager for the Chicago Force, one of 49 teams in the Independent Women's Football League. "You have to be 18 and female, that's really the only stipulation."
So of course, I showed up at the tryout in my workout gear.
I'm joining the women's tackle football team as quarterback for training camp, for a story for ESPN the Magazine, and what I hope will be some Plimpton-esque pieces on the Huffington Post. And between now and the public scrimmage in which I'm actually going to play in April, I'm sure there'll be some foolishness to share here at Writing Boots, too.
I've attended the tryout and a rookie camp and so far my feelings range from shy to sheepish. (My discomfort is painfully evident as I flee from Walter Payton's smokin' hot daughter to get out of a camera shot.) These, not coincidentally, are the same feelings that prevented me from fulfilling my my fond football dreams and joining the junior high boys team when I was 12.
As they say, courage doesn't mean not having fear, it means overcoming your fear, 27 years later.
A month ago when my dad caught wind of this scheme, he yelled at me: "Christ, you'll be killed!" I dismissed him as a worrywart. But in my notes from the tryout it reads—I don't remember writing it—"WHAT AM I DOING?"
Well, at the moment I'm watching game film ....