Some say our inner teen never leaves us, but merely takes on more sophisticated tastes.
One wonders, therefore, about the inner teen of a parent at a high school girls hockey game in Massachusetts, who allegedly brought along his laser pointer.
Did he wish to use it to feature some aspect of the home team's strategy? Not quite. He is accused of using it to distract the opposing team's goalie.
I know that hockey exists largely so that people can reconstruct each other's faces, but the idea that a parent could try to do this to a teen seems beyond even hockey's boundaries.
WBZ-TV reported that Medway-Ashland High School goalie Kathryn Hamer could barely see the puck.
"It's kind of like when you look at the sun and you look away and you see that spot and you can't see for a couple of seconds," Hamer told WBZ-TV.
The score was tied at 1-1 at the time and the laser pointing got so bad that-- given that this was a State Tournament game--officials thought it might be best to halt the proceedings and find the miscreant.
You might imagine that this was some drunken teen, desperate to show his technological power over defenseless girls.
And yet the accused is the father of a player from Winthrop, Medway--Ashland's opponents. He was tossed from the game and banned from attending further events.
Yet that punishment seems little more than a five-minute penalty, for Winthrop won the game 3-1 and the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association is refusing Medway's request for the game to be played again.
Hamer's dad is furious. He told WBZ-TV: "You're effectively telling people, do what you have to do to win the game."
Yet what technology giveth, technology taketh away. For some clever students were at the game and filmed it. Their video has reportedly now been handed over to the police.
Amid all the fulmination about sporting justice, some might wonder what kind of laser pointer this fine parent might have been using and how dangerous it might have been.
Naturally, I turned to one of New Jersey's finest universities, Princeton, to find some answers.
It all seems to depend on how powerful the pointer is. Currently, there don't seem to be any laws preventing the sale of pointers. But, as often is the case, laser pointers with considerable power can be purchased online and can, according to Princeton's brains, "present a significant potential for eye injury."
Some might wonder what such a parent and his daughter might chat about after a game.
Would she give him a big hug and say, "Way to go, dad. You really showed 'em."? Or might she still encourage her teammates to petition the Athletic Association for a redo?
Do these high school girls believe that winning is everything? At the moment, that seems to be the case. How quaintly modern.