a story about bears

Saucy has a story to tell you about The Cheerios and their competition this weekend, but she has no pictures to show you. Not only was her camera battery dead, it all happened so fast there was no time to take any pictures anyway. You'll just have to read the story that Saucy has illustrated with pictures of bears from the Internet and imagine how it all went down... but with different kinds of Bears. 

This weekend The Cheerios had a pretty big competition. It was the first time they ever took part in a two-day event, meaning the scores on the first day would be combined with the scores on the second day and the winner would be determined by an average. It was a little tricky to prepare for this event, with some limited gym time, some non-cheerleading related injuries, and one of The Cheerios even had to miss a practice for a funeral. These things happen.

 They really did. After the first day, they were ranked in the first position. 

Because Saucy realized that it could be an advantage - or maybe a disadvantage - being in first place after the first day. Sometimes knowing you're in first place can make you a little slack or over confident. But it always, always makes your competition hungry. That's the worst part.

When you're in first, you have everything to lose. The other teams have everything to win. They will bring everything they have to the mat to hunt you down.

Today, The Cheerios took their routine to the floor and generally they most of it even better than they did the first time.

Saucy knew that one little fall, it could take The Cheerios out of first place in a hurry. Overall though, they were pretty confident after their second run. 

Then Saucy found out that the other teams had no falls at all today. None.

When it came time for the awards, The Cheerios circled up on the mat and cheered for the Level Three group from their school as they won their division. It was super exciting, because they went into the second day in second place. 

This made Saucy even a little more nervous. It proved that first place can be snatched away like a pot of honey.

Saucy and The Cheerios had to wait. The announcer called every other level but not Level Two. It was kind of nerve wracking and very suspenseful. 

And then it happened. The Level Two awards began and The Cheerios were called up to get their third place trophy. Saucy was a little disappointed... she thought maybe if they hadn't hung on to first place, at least they would have second place. But that didn't happen.

It was especially disappointing for the girls involved in the little fall because they felt responsible for the outcome. Saucy could see on their faces they were upset with themselves but she smiled at them and nodded her head when they clapped for the other teams being called.

Then, the team that had been in third place after yesterday got called up to win first place. Of course The Cheerios were extra disappointed that they were beaten by the team that stripped them of their title last year. Well, that's how sports rivalries start, Saucy thought. Here we go. How are we going to nip this in the bud before it gets ugly?

Immediately the scoresheets got passed over and Saucy decided to tear into them right away. She doesn't usually do that on the mat but she was just dying to see where things went wrong exactly - because there's still a week left in the season and there's no better time than this exact moment to start figuring out what you need to fix, right?

But the scoresheets had unusual numbers... The Cheerio's numbers were higher than everyone else's. Saucy scratched her head and started grappling for her reading glasses because she's getting old like that. Luckily, the new assistant coach who is not only an athlete - she's a math major - was on hand to have a look at the papers. 

The Mathlete announced that maybe something was wrong.

Just then the nice lady that runs the event came over and told everyone to hang on. The announcer had made a mistake. 

And Saucy didn't even want them to get too excited. Because, they still maybe didn't even win first place. But they were starting to squeal and squeak. They were trying not to get too worked up and Saucy was trying to be all Mama Bear on them and make them behave. 

And when the announcer apologized and said she'd read the rankings incorrectly, the room sort of erupted. The Cheerios had won first place after all!

And pretty much, Saucy made The Cheerios calm down because even though they were happy, it was super unhappy for the other teams... more so than if they'd just straight-up lost. So The Cheerios were kind of calm and it was a little surreal and the only regret Saucy had at that moment was for the other team and maybe just a little bit that she'd shut The Cheerios celebration down. They didn't really get their moment. Oh, well.

Then, a voice came over the loudspeaker and the Grand Champion was being announced. The Grand Champion at a cheer competition is the team that scored the highest of all the teams in all of the levels - it's kind of a big deal. The Grand Champions get a really big trophy. The Grand Champions, mathematically, are the winners of all the winners.

The Cheerios were called up as Grand Champions.

And, just like that, The Cheerios had their moment. Saucy didn't make them put too much of a pin in their celebration at that point. After all, she'd made them put a pin in it when they were finally called in their division.

They carried their division trophy with their Grand Champion trophy to their dressing room and they took pictures around that big trophy with huge smiles on their faces. They updated their Facebook statuses and the parents came running over to hug and kiss everyone. It was kind of awesome. It had been a tad dramatic, yes... but it was pretty thrilling.

The best part of that moment for Saucy was that both teams from the school won their divisions. It wasn't really the Grand Champion part. It was that the Green Team won Division Three and The Cheerios in their yellow uniforms won Division Two and they'd cheered for each other, not against each other.

After the pictures were taken, the Judging Director came into the dressing room. She looked stressed out. Saucy could only imagine, after all that.

The Cheerios were not Grand Champions. They had to give the giant trophy back. The Cheerios were standing there, stunned.

Because, she realized, her reaction - just the look on her face - would be a cue for the girls. If she got too worked up about it, so would they. After all, they were still the winners of their division. That part was still okay.

Saucy looked at the Judging Director who looked sort of terrified and worried. She must have been sure...

And then, something pretty cool happened. The Cheerios asked who the real Grand Champions were. It turned out to be an amazing team from another city. Not just mathematically, but in the most general way possible - they deserved to be Grand Champions. They are pretty awesome. 

In the blink of an eye, The Cheerios grabbed the giant trophy and bolted out of the room to find the real Grand Champions. They found them in their dressing room and gave them the good news themselves. They actually found it quite satisfying.

After all, they'd kind of had their moment with it.

When it was finally over, The Cheerios had a small trophy for winning their division but Saucy knew a little something right then and there. They're different kind of winners. They have the biggest hearts.

Saucy and The Cheerios left to go home. Traveling back to the city, they sang to the songs on the radio, they worried about the feelings of the team that had to give back the division trophy and they decided to work extra hard for next weekend, so there's no confusion about who wins.


Lisa Russell said...

Well what a whirlwind...but congrats on your division win!! That is awesome!!

karen said...

this should be in a book ;-)

Niki said...

A great story and great pics.
One does have to wonder how the judges messed up the math TWICE...

Jen Anderson said...

OMG. I'm exhausted just reading about it. That's a great bunch of kids you have there. And I certainly hope that these judges figure out what caused all the mistakes so they can avoid it in the future.

Anonymous said...

This is why I love Saucy, The Cheerios and Bears.

Kerrie said...

This really and truly should be a story book! You should Blurb it! And I often think your stories about the Cheerios would make good children's lit. They are always learning lessons from you, those girls.

Super job!!

Jill said...

Great story! Your girls are amazing... and so are you. I think you should write a book about this, you know, before someone else does.

(I just had to say that. I know, that was kind of snarky, but I just could not help myself. I'm still shakin' my head over last time. Okay, I'll drop it now.)

Congratulations, Cheerios!


Anonymous said...

That makes the Cheerios the real GRAND CHAMPIONS if y'all ask me! (hugs) and who needs a stink in' trophy to know that?

Cheering Grandma said...

As a cheer mom and supervisor from way back I can tell you that things like this happen from time to time but most coaches and teams are NOT gracious about it. However, in light of the fact that your team offered to give up the trophy willingly and had already suffered an earlier injustice at award presentation, I would hope that the sponsor offered your team a nice trophy to take home. After all awards are presented and the dust has settled if the "real" champs got their recognition, you should be able to keep yours. A good sponsor would deliver your team a sportsmanship trophy.

I enjoy reading your blog so much. I miss my girls cheering days in Georgia and have taken to living vicariously through your real life "Cheerios"... but I think yours are so much nicer than the ones on that show!

Saucy said...

Jill you're too funny... I'd forgotten about that until last week when I found that crazy paperback under a pile of junk while spring cleaning.

And just so everyone knows, I did hear from the event organizer - she's a friend of mine through cheer - and they're so sorry... but no, she doesn't owe us a trophy. We compete in a sport that is subjected to human error all the time. Everyone makes mistakes... kids might make a mistake on the mat, the grownups might make a mistake with a calculator or read the list wrong. It's just that all three things happened to us today... so hopefully we all have our problems ironed out befor we compete again on Tuesday!

Stef said...


Dana said...

Good Lord! I'd need a drink after that! I am bummed that there are no pics, but excellent use of bears! :) Congrats Cheerios!!!

MJ said...

Wow, that was dramatic! What good sports to present the rightful team with the Grand Championship trophy! They get kudos for being great sports!

The Miller Five said...

That is so freaking awesome! I NEVER comment, but always read your blog. This one deserved a comment. What an amazing story for you and your team. Great job and congratulations!!

matgrif said...

What a roller coaster ride! Whew!

JuliaW said...

I loved both the story and your use of the bears to illustrate it! Congrats on both!

sassy said...

WOW! Great job Mama Bear Saucy and Cubs!

Bethany Not Yet Ever After said...

So two teams had to give back trophies? That's too bad. It sucks for everyone. I bet there were some tears from the other team. Getting Grand Champion is a big deal... Like pulling a supreme title at a beauty pageant and we all know from TLC how dramatic that can be! LOL

Manic Insomniac said...

Your team is really great, they really have great sportsmanship, in the crazy world of competition. They are so sweet, to want to tell the winners them selves.

Anonymous said...

LMBO at the pictures, nice story. Mary in NY

Sandra D said...

Whew - what a dramatic end to your competition! Sounds like it will be a memorable weekend for all the right reasons.

{Happy Homes} said...

Just wanted to give you "kudos" for being an awesome mom and coach! Way to go! I went through every last emotion with you in the story...gah! All I could think of was...what. a. seriously. great. mom. you. are.