Women’s soccer, million dollar donation and warehouse job take podium

Screenshot of LFG, an account of the United States Women’s National Football Team’s struggle for equal pay, told by Megan Rapinoe, Jessica McDonald, Becky Sauerbrunn, Kelley O’Hara, Sam Mewis and others. (HBO Max)

I’m not exactly football. However, as an American who has now lived in Canada for 20 years, I have learned a lot about the passionate rivalry between the women’s soccer teams of the United States and Canada.

This Canada beats the United States team (1–0) in the semi-final match of the Tokyo Olympics, then won gold (3–2) against Sweden will encourage, for many sugar maple moons (bona fide astronomers jargon ), people in the land of unlimited maple syrup. I’m telling you what I know.

On the other hand, I have no idea of ​​the football business. Therefore, I immediately noted the million dollars that Title Nine, a women’s sportswear company in California, recently donated to the United States National Women’s Football Team. This, in order to reduce the wage gap (around $ 60 million since 2016) between professional American footballers and their male counterparts. A lawsuit against the American Football Federation for sex discrimination is currently on appeal in court.

“[The U.S.] the women’s football team has dominated the sport like no other; they are truly a national treasure, ”said Missy Park, Founder and CEO of Title Nine, in interviews on the unprecedented gift. Park said she was inspired to write the big check after watching LFG, a new documentary about the USWNST battle for equal pay.

” The Federation [is] paying them like second-class citizens, ”said Park, who named his company after Title IX, the American law of 1972 which made it compulsory for girls and women to have equal access to education and school sports.

When it comes to equal access, Title Nine has proven to be pivotal in my literary career: for missing my deadline for a major book project in the late 1990s, I found salvation in a part-time warehouse packing job for the holiday season with the company.

Less stressed by writer’s block after getting the job, I woke up exhilarated on work days, eager to don a ski cap and the mismatched fleece and corduroy ensemble that lessened the chill in the room. Title Nine cavernous warehouse.

My typical midday meal (carrot sticks, sardine sandwich, apple) arranged in a Homer Simpson lunchbox, I happily left for a job where no one cared about the proper placement of a comma.

Indeed, as I pushed my metal cart through an inventory maze, I felt a calming peace as I gathered sports bras, exercise tights, and other women’s sportswear that I have. then packaged and loaded onto a conveyor belt for shipment around the world.

The conversation during my half-hour lunch break didn’t ignite Oprah’s book choices. Instead, I wrote recipes for the delicious homemade tamales, lumpia, and samosas that my coworkers, taking pity on my wet sardine sandwich, generously shared with me.

Time limit ? These were the dates when a growing mountain of packages had to be dispatched to guarantee delivery by December 25. Unlike the review (again) of my story, I looked forward to the challenge.

In the context of the Tokyo Olympics and nearly a quarter of a century after emptying my locker at Title Nine, I realize that the shiny dent on my forehead serves as my cherished “coin” of work.

Here’s why: while looking for a mailing label that had slipped on the floor, I once smashed my head on the conveyor. A thick trail of blood soon snaked up my left eyebrow.

Hating to be sent home, I walked over to the employee dining room. There I twisted an ice cube out of a tray in the fridge, placed it over the notch on my forehead, and pulled down my ski cap. Hidden damage, I returned to my workstation where I blissfully continued to wrap boxes, slyly wiping away the dewy water droplets that ran down my face.

Mentally refreshed by my non-literary work, I was quickly able to create the necessary ending for my book and send the manuscript to my editor. The work also highlighted the many women who, constrained by poor education, language barriers and inadequate training, deserve more support to improve their lives.

While I probably never play football, I’m grateful to Title Nine for a work experience (and a distinctive scar!) That remains more precious to me than gold.

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