I am not sure what grade I was in (I know it was a grade) when we, people in my school, were invited to the all-city (Decatur, IL) track meet. Everyone else had uniforms, but I remember not having a track uniform and wearing shorts and a t-shirt. We might have been asked to wear the super-sweaty poly doubleknit girls b-ball unis, I'm not sure. *Everyone* seemed to have real track and field uniforms at the meet.
Anyway, because I suck at running fast, I signed up for the triple jump. Some kind person who drove us there, under the label "coach", but it was a ride, I say, a van driver, had no idea what this contest was. Look it up on wiki, or watch the olympics, hey.
In any case, so I'm the "team member" on the triple jump. I'm in line. I'm like, hey, what do I do? The other girls have some trepidation. I insist, "I have no idea, I'm not going to win, just what is this thing?" They tell me. It is a hop, skip, and long jump or something. I do one. OK. The girl with nice sneakers was so much better. The second time, I fall flat on my face in the sand. Alright. Third time, I scratch.
And that's how I got my only ribbon in track and field. Second place, red.