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    HS, MS, CYO
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  1. Those are female crickets, so you won't even hear any chirping (because only male crickets chirp) . My officials association has done Zoom meetings for football and basketball. So, I believe it may do the same for baseball and softball. Even if the COVID situation here improves significantly between now and March/April, I believe the school whose auditorium or cafeteria we'd normally use as a meeting site may still not want to let anyone in after hours that doesn't have an absolute need to be there.
  2. I had a play that was a routine yet close force out at third to end an inning. The 3rd base coach wanted me to get help . I told him, "Coach, my partner is 90 feet away, and I'm right here. I have the better look." If there was a pulled foot, sure I'd consider getting help. But not for this play -- especially after my partner and I agreed in our pregame that we wouldn't seek help from each other solely to placate a coach. This works for clued-in coaches. In one instance, I used this in a basketball game while reporting a foul by adding, "She slid into the airborne shooter." The
  3. I've officiated 8 years of basketball and 3 years of softball. Depending on my work situation next year and any feedback I get this year from partners that also work the sport, I might consider adding cross country for next fall.
  4. I wonder why the author is writing an article in 2020 about an incident that happened just over seven years ago . The date stamp on the video is 10-5-13 (or 2013-10-05 for the benefit of anyone visiting from outside the USA). I recall seeing this video posted elsewhere shortly after the incident took place. Perhaps he just now discovered the video? But yeah, that was both egregious and disgusting to watch.
  5. I had 3 softball games last month when a colleague needed me as a sub after an unexpected family situation came up. Barring a similar situation this month, I probably won't umpire again until the school season in Spring 2021. In the meantime, I'm curious to see what kind of basketball schedule, if any, I end up with for the Fall and Winter.
  6. "He's screwing us just like he did yesterday!" -- This was said about me by a fan in response to a routine force-out to end their team's half of the first inning. The best part: This happened at a softball tournament's consolation game -- a tournament where I didn't umpire any of the previous day's games . I had to bite my tongue to keep from laughing out loud.
  7. @The Man in Blue & @beerguy55 - Thanks for your thoughts and reminder that some situations can be no-win no matter how gracefully we strive to handle them. You're right that there are coaches who correctly realize that someone working solo because of an unanticipated no-show or last-second change may miss something just because of the inherent limitations of having one umpire and they handle those situations with class. Those coaches that don't get it and want to die on that sword likely find themselves warned, restricted, or tossed.
  8. I can see this as a possibility if social distancing was required next season (Spring 2021 and beyond) with a solo umpire because of the fact umpires are already stretched thin in many areas and there's a vested interest in keeping them as healthy as possible. Otherwise, I think it's a 50/50 toss-up at best. I wish I had thought about saying something similar this weekend. The second umpire assigned to the softball games was a no-show. So, the umpire I eventually replaced had to do the first three games solo. Having arriving early with the games behind schedule, he asked me to b
  9. I was asked by a colleague to take a couple of softball tournament games he can't work due to a last-second conflict. I was told we will be using standard 2-person mechanics (PU behind the catcher, BU at A, B, or C as appropriate). Although the entity running the tournament posted guidelines for coaches/players regarding the handling and cleaning of balls and equipment, there was nothing there for umpires. Here is what I intend to do: As a BU, I will use hand sanitizer between half innings if I have to touch a ball or anything else contacted by others. As a PU, I'll use hand saniti
  10. Another thing the OP should keep in mind is that umpires might not even know of a potential conflict until teams show up for a game -- especially in a tournament's bracket play where it's not known in advance who will play which games in the elimination or championship stage. At that point in time, it's difficult at best to move umpires around to avoid the conflict; there's the possibility that an umpire switch intended to resolve such an unexpected conflict might end up creating another. Hand in hand with @noumpere's comments, assignors strive to do all they can to schedule games so that
  11. I work at an accountant's office for a sole proprietor. Presently, I'm working from home, but I worry how long that might last with all of our small business bookkeeping clients all shut down and not paying us for now. Luckily, our tax preparation has remained on par with any other year. Small businesses have been hit very hard with the state's current restrictions and I fear some may still struggle for the rest of the year if and when they resume full operations -- our office included if we don't get our full revenue stream back any time soon. If my current job were to end any time soon, eith
  12. I couldn't find anything definitive apart from talk about prorating numbers for businesses that started in the middle of 2019 and operated less than 12 months. What I did find stated consistently on some of the sites I checked was that most, if not all, of the money has already been applied for.
  13. I received a job-related e-mail today and, according to the formula, loan amounts for self-employed/contractors are based on the net income appearing on Schedule C and not gross receipts. Five twenty-fourths of my 2019 net income -- using the formula (NI / 12) x 2.5 -- came to less than the minimum $1000 amount, so I'm out of luck even though my actual net income for the 2.5 months of Spring 2019 exceeded that. The months where I had little or no officiating income apparently worked against me when averaging out for the entire year. Apparently, the extra $500 is only for depend
  14. The one thing that seems to be a sticking point at first reading is that requirement that 75% of any amount received be used for payroll. From the SBA Site: I'm curious how "payroll" will be interpreted for an independent contractor. Umpires working as independent contractors don't have employees working for them, so the requirement that 75% of any amount be used towards payroll could be a potential sticking point in received loan forgiveness. However, one link (archive) I found researching the issue suggests that net earnings from self-employment would qualify as payroll costs, but
  15. My first Spring game is presently April 20 and my schedule has been slowly filling through May. The optimist in me is pleased, but the realist in me wonders if or when these games might be canceled should our governor declare school out for the rest of the 2019-20 academic year.
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