So there we are, Marin's first track practice.
The coach asks the kids to run at medium speed twice around the track to warm up. Marin is walking.
The coach divides the kids into relay teams of about 20 runners each, and tells the kids to sit down after they have run to help her keep track of who has run and who has not. Marin, about 5th in line, casually looks around, sneaks her way to the back of the line, and sits down before having a turn at running.
At water break time, I ask Marin if she is having fun.
Marin: An enthusiastic "Yes, Daddy! I love this track game!"
Me: Then why aren't you running?
Marin: Huh? I'm running really hard.
Me: Marin. I watched you. You walked while the other kids ran and you sat while the other kids raced.
Marin: Really, you were watching me?
Me: Yes. So what is it you love about this track game?
Marin: (looks around carefully, leans in, and whispers) I get to talk to all the boys.
Thinking quickly, I informed Marin that boys like girls who run fast. The faster the girl, the more the boy likes her. Marin looked cynical. Thankfully, one of the Mothers had overheard the entire conversation and piped in "Oh yes, Marin. I learned in third grade that boys like girls who run fast and I started practicing my fast running and always had lots of boyfriends."
Well, that was all Marin needed to hear. She burst back on to the track and instantly became the Usain Bolt of third grade!