11 November 2009


I'm successfully making the transition to football. Because in Kenya...football is where it's at. They say it's the most popular sport in the world. And after tonight, I can tell why.

I watched the varsity team play in the semi-finals game versus their archrival, Rift Valley Academy, this evening. It was incredibly exciting. It made me want to start playing football. Actually, it makes me want to start playing football...like...right now.

Here's how it went down: The game was dead even through the entire first half. Both teams had very strong defenses and skilled goalkeepers, and there had been few shots even close to getting in, so the score going into halftime was nil-nil. The pace was a bit quicker the second half, and a few balls nearly scored, but impressive plays by both sides contained the score still to 0-0 after 89 of the 90 total minutes. With less than a minute to go, Rosslyn kept the ball deep in RVA's territory; with a strong offensive push, a lot of heavy body contact, and a goalkeeper not quite getting to the ball, Rosslyn scored the one and only goal of the game! The crowd went nuts, I high-fived some of my middle school students sitting next to me (we had previously been beating on drums and blowing extremely loud noisemakers throughout the game together), and a few short seconds later the refs blew the whistle, and Rosslyn advanced to the Finals.

It's things like this that connect you to a school and its students. Sitting amidst a community cheering for their team, playing drums and yelling at referees with middle school boys, asking other teachers if they've heard updates on teams playing away games...I really do feel so much more a part of Rosslyn Academy after tonight.

Ok...but seriously...I want to go play football right now.

p.s. I'm going to incorporate this into my choir rehearsals tomorrow. I'm trying to get my students to understand the concept of a sforzando, in which you attack a note, back off quickly, and crescendo out of it. Rolling a football from one side of the piano to the other, the choirs are going to sing from forte to piano, crescendoing, and decrescendoing...and hopefully they'll make the connection from the football pitch to the choir room. Thanks, teachable moments.


  1. Oh Statty... I miss you! You make me smile:) haha
    PS. I have a new puppy that I believe will LOVE you:)

  2. Um yes, creativity in the classroom. You are an excellent, and fun, teacher, Mr. Statler.

    Lets play football (both varieties) when you get back.

  3. I told you that their football would replace the football over here. Just to let you know, the Colts are still undefeated and the only other team in the NFL that is undefeated is the New Orlean Saints. This Sunday is the Colts/Patriots game. But I will let you get back to your new football. :) Have fun!

  4. Mark Statler! :) You sound like you are having oh-so-much fun!!! AND you sound like you were just meant to be a music teacher! :) Wow, I hope everything continues to go well for you. Please Grove sends their greetings! You are still much missed, but Matt and I are trying to keep everyone updated via your blog. ;) Hey, well, hope to hear another good update soon! Blessings!

  5. oops... and that was molly ;)