24 March 2011

Dirt is Good

On Friday afternoon the phone rang and who was calling? Ivan Vicelich, the All White, that's who.

Dash was offered the chance to Interview an All White footballer through Kiwi Mummy Blogs and the Persil "Dirt is Good" campaign. Persil are now sponsors of the Small Whites, encouraging kids soccer here in New Zealand. I'm all for that, with an up-and-coming future All White in our family. And you know me, I totally believe that Dirt is Good. Ask anyone!

So we were all ready for our interview when the phone rang, with questions that Dash had come up with by himself (with just a few suggestions from his mummy of course).

Here's a shortened version of the interview...

{for the whole thing visit Dash's Blog My Sporty Life}


DASH: How long have you been playing soccer?
IVAN: I started when I was around 6 or 7 years old for Massey AFC.

MUMMY: *whispers* But how long is that? We don't know how old he is...

IVAN: I'm 21! Hahahahaha... No really I'm 34 so I've been playing for a long long time.

{Mummy is thinking, awww, Ivan is nice. And funny too.}

DASH: What's the best thing about being an All White?
IVAN: Knowing that you're playing for your country. It's a great honour for me to play for my country and knowing that when I put the shirt on, I have all of New Zealand supporting us. It's a special feeling which is really unique.

{Mummy is thinking, yeah one day that could be you Dash. What a proud moment that will be...}

DASH: What do kids have to do if they want to be an All White?
IVAN: It starts with what you're doing now. Play hard, listen to your parents, listen to your coaches. Enjoy football and also put a lot of work in, and sacrifice along the way. But always enjoy football. And keep progressing and working hard cos its a long and difficult road, but a very enjoyable road and if you make it to be a professional footballer or an All White.

{Mummy is thinking, great advice Ivan! Yeah work hard, but enjoy it. It's all about having fun, really...}

DASH: What's your best advice about football?
IVAN: Work hard and always have a dream and work towards that dream. And always believe in yourself. You can reach your goals, there's no reason why you can't be an All White or play professionally. It's hard work but it's worth it.

{Mummy is thinking, wow, how cool that Dash gets to hear this from a guy who has done it. How cool that he gets to be encouraged by somebody who is living his dream...}

DASH: Cool. Well I think that's the end of my questions. Do you want to talk to my mum now?

IVAN: Sure. But first I have a question for you. What position do you play?

DASH: I started off as attacking midfield, but now I play striker. 

IVAN: Cool. Do you score lots of goals?

DASH: We've just started training for this season but in all the other games I have scored heaps of goals.

MUMMY: Yeah, Dash is a great goal scorer. In his first season his Team scored 62 goals and Dash scored 35 of them!

IVAN: Wow, that's impressive! Do you get dirty when you play?

DASH: Yeah it gets really rainy and muddy...

{Mummy is thinking, you have no idea!}

IVAN: Well, Dash, it's been nice talking to you. I have to go now but get in touch with me if there's anything I can help you with OK?

DASH: OK. Bye.

MUMMY: *whispering* Say thanks to Ivan...

DASH: Oh, yeah, um, thanks Ivan for letting me interview you!

IVAN: no worries :)

Before he hung up the phone Ivan told me that he wouldn't have been able to get where he has in football without the support of his parents. He said his mum was always sitting in the car with a book or her knitting, waiting for him to finish training.
"Support from the parents is so important," he said.

Totally. Totally agree with you, Ivan.
And why wouldn't we want to support our kid doing something he loves - and is so good at?

There are so many reasons why team sport is such a great thing for boys, in particular.

  • They get to learn that there are rules to be played by and consequences when you break those rules
  • They learn about winning and losing. You can't always win. But you can lose without being a loser.
  • They get to feel the joy of winning, scoring, achieving
  • They get to learn how to get up and try again after a defeat
  • They have another voice speaking into their lives, encouraging them, coaching them
  • They get to belong somewhere and contribute to the success of the team
  • They discover you can achieve more as part of a team than as an individual
  • They get to shine at something they are skilled at
  • They get to be part of something bigger than themselves
  • They learn and develop great skills, which gives them confidence and helps boost their self esteem
  • They get to expend energy, run, breathe fresh air, get muddy knees and dirty clothes - all the things that are an integral part of being a boy

Last year Mr G was Dash's football coach. This year we decided that having another voice coaching and encouraging him is what Dash needs right now.

He needs Daddy just to be daddy, on the sidelines cheering Dash on, being his Number One Fan and practise buddy, rather than his coach.

Training has begun. A new team, a new uniform, a new club right around the corner.
As always we are looking forward to the early misty mornings, the cheering and jubilation of goals scored, the celebration over pancakes, the burst of pride watching our star race down the field, cutting through the opposition and slotting the ball in the net.

We anticipate the encouragement we'll need to give when things don't go his way. When goals aren't scored. When games aren't won. The valuable lessons to be learnt in those moments.

Ah yes. We love the Football Season. Bring it On. Dirt is Good.

{PS Here's the All Whites Behind the Scenes of the Persil Small Whites commercial}

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Elizabeth said...

I grew up playing netball and hockey, and I to look forward to winter sport season when our girl is big enough!

Go Dash - what a star! We'll be looking out for him in a few years time :-)!

Leslie said...

HOW COOL!!!! what a great experience. Great photos too.

jacksta said...

yay for Dash...he must be brimming with excitment! Good call on Daddy being daddy, I noticed all the parent-child coach relationships I grew up watching seemed a little strained.

Pamela said...

What a feel good post! I am so happy for your boy to have had such a wonderful interview! Super Cool!

Sophie said...

supercool journalism Dash!!! How cool is that!!!!

Gail said...

Fantastic post - great interview and great advice! Have a great season guys, looking forward to hearing the triumphs!

alicia said...

Very cute post. Mu son would have been so stoked, as he is a huge soccer buff. Love the pics of him on the phone.

alicia said...

P.S. Loving the new border effect to the pics. Where did you get this?

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