Defeat always tastes worse in the rain.
It was in the eighth grade that I experienced this firsthand. After a successful seven-year career in the flag football circuit, I stood on the sidelines during my one year of tackle football, waiting for Coach Rice to put me in for my obligatory five plays.
On this particular day, we were losing bad — like, really bad. The only thing more torn apart than our defense was the field, which had been ravaged by the torrential downpour that accompanied our three-hour slaughterfest.
As the rain soaked into my pads and eventually consumed my entire psyche, so too did the despair of losing. I watched idly as the deficit grew larger, knowing I couldn't do anything to help my team.
Of course, that had more to do with talent than opportunity — you can only ask so much from a 5-foot-2, 86-pound defensive tackle — but it hurt nonetheless.