6 games in one weekend and I'm feeling pretty darn good. I'm actually typing this after 3 games and then watching my son's game in 90 degree heat. I'm amazed. Here are some good ref #lifelessons I thought I should reinforce after this weekend:
1. Always keep tissues or toilet paper in your ref bag. If you are working the early game, the staff may not have refilled toilet paper in the stalls form the day before. Never a good thing when the person in the stall next to you asks if you have any TP to share because he has none. Not a good look waddling to the other stalls on a search of TP at 7:30 AM. Thankfully one of the 5 stalls was stocked. Could have been ugly.
2. Always keep an extra whistle in your ref bag. I thankfully did. Left my primary one on the car from yesterday. You never want to have to borrow a whistle. Simply yelling "whistle" at the top of my lungs would have been embarrassing.
3. Always have back up watches. I thought I charged my Apple Watch last night, but as soon as I finished the first half of my first game today, I got the dreaded "10% battery is left" warning. So thankful to actually have 2 back-up watches in my bag.
4. Always have sunscreen! Even on a cloudy day, the sun can still have an affect. Today, the clouds gave gave right at high noon and by the end of my 3rd game, I was feeling it. Skin cancer in no joke. Don't mess around with the sun.
5. Always make sure that flag communication is part of your pre-game. There is nothing worse than seeing a crew out of sync. An AR calling for Corner Kick, while a CR is calling for a GK gets everyone upset. Make eye contact. Know what the center is expecting in terms of signals and try not to cross each other up. It just looks really bad.