Then the other
team's trainer yelled for the doctor.
The doctor? Maybe
the kid was hurt after all. We looked for the doctor. No doctor. The boy had
been on the field for close to five minutes now. The trainer asked a cop to
call the rescue squad. Where the hell was an ambulance? No doctor, no
arrived. He had volunteered to be there but thought it was a two o'clock game,
not 1:30. Sorry.
Now rumors spread
along our bench that the kid was dead. I turned around and tongue-lashed a
player who said that. "Don't be a jerk. Look at him. He's talking to the
Sirens. The rescue
truck digging tracks in the moist field. Ten minutes had passed since the kid
went down. I finally decided to join the huddle around the boy and see if we
could get things moving.
With his helmet
off, he looked shrunken and fragile in his equipment, his head sticking out of
the massive shoulder pads like that of a small boy from his father's
much-too-large jacket. He looked frightened. The doctor leaned over him.
"Am I going to
be all right? I'm going to be all right, aren't I?"
"I can't feel
anything. My legs. I can't feel anything." His voice, a scared child's
voice. A lost child's voice. Wanting to be found. His face was handsome, almost
pretty. The trainer took the boy's cleats and socks off.
"Can you move