Cheerleaders are Gullible

This post is just a funny story from coaching junior all stars.  I hope you enjoy!

We had just wrapped up junior all star practice.  We had a super talented bunch of kids on the team.  Other than the first competition, they won every competition they entered the rest of the season.  As is the case with talented kids, they were what we called “gym rats.”  They were basically in the gym for hours every single day.  I think we should have been charging for day care instead for lessons.  We’d have made a lot more.  Anyway, a handful of my junior gym rats were hanging around after practice talking about things that middle school girls talk about.  It went from boys, to phones, back to boys and eventually to belly button rings.  That’s when a little devil popped up on my shoulder and MADE me have a little fun with them.  Here’s how it went down.

“Hey girls, did you know that when you have kids they probably won’t even be able to get belly button rings?”

(With startled expressions…)  “What?  Why not?  Will they be illegal?”

“No.  Not illegal.  Impossible.  Do you know what a belly button is?”

“Yeah.  It’s where your umbilical cord was when you were a baby.”

(Yes, they actually knew the word umbilical cord.  Pretty good for an 8th grader!)  “That is right.  It is the scar that is left when the cord falls off.  The thing is, they are just now starting to cut the cord with lasers instead of with scissors.  And when you cut with a laser your don’t leave a scar.  No scars mean no belly buttons.  So your kids probably won’t have belly buttons.”

(The girls were wide-eyed with sheer terror and disbelief.  For the record, I was completely making all of this up.  I guess it sounded pretty plausible.  Anyway, the conversation continued…”

“But what will people pierce?”

(No kidding.  THAT was the next thing they asked.  I just shrugged and tried to keep from laughing at them.)

“That will be so weird.  Why would they do that?”

“Well, belly buttons can get infected, so it is actually safer and more sanitary to use a laser.  The next generation will not have belly buttons at all.”

(This next part was my favorite.)

“But belly buttons are cute!!!!  I am going to make my kids have belly buttons.”

At this point, their ride got to the gym so they picked up and left.  I saw them later in the week at practice and they never asked about the belly button story again, and I eventually forgot all about it.  I had planned to tell them I was only joking but I just forgot to do so.

It was about 7 years later that I remembered the belly button story.  I had long since left coaching all stars.  I had not seen any of those juniors in years.  By this time, they had graduated high school and some were completely out of cheerleading.  I was judging a competition in Oklahoma City.  The gym I had been coaching at when I told the story was in Kentucky.  Anyway, while I was walking around the event, I overheard some girls talking about belly buttons and lasers.  I had to stop and listen.  Sure enough, one girl was telling another girl the exact story that I made up 7 years before.  I was utterly surprised to be hearing this so far away and such a long time from the original story.  But making it even more amazing was that this team was actually from around Seattle, Washington!

I can not be certain of the origin of the story I heard in OK City.  Maybe someone else made up the exact same story as me.  But I like to think that over the years my little white lie was passed from camp to competition and eventually found its way out on the West Coast.

One more thing.  As far as I know, my former little junior gym rats STILL do not know that I made that up, so if you see them around, don’t tell them so we can keep the joke going.  Maybe it will reach overseas.  🙂

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