I held her legs. My brother held the knife. Our friends held their breaths. And the 9-month-old lamb, lying on her side beneath us, held nothing except, perhaps, a foreboding instinct that things were not going her way.
Terrified, I gave away the few balls that landed at my feet and was soon relegated to goalie, but over the course of that summer (and the ensuing 20 years) I learned what it meant to take a 30-yard cross on the chest, to scrap, to shoot with power, to slide tackle—to play, as they say, with “cojones.”
The fact that 70 percent of high schoolers in Santa Fe County reported taking a drink in a recent 30-day period, well above the national average of 45 percent, makes me think there’s an explanation specific to the teenager different. And my hunch is it has something to do with our schools.