Wednesday, September 27
After soccer practice, Victor and his friends Hernando, Tino, and Mano indulge in some cruel teasing of Joey, mocking him as Charlie the Tuna. After they leave, Paul tells Joey not to take the taunting too seriously. When Mom comes to pick them up, she talks to Maya and is surprised to hear from Paul that Maya is one of the best soccer players in the county. Mom thinks this is surprising because Maya is a girl. When they drop Joey off at his home, they notice that some of the houses in the street are being fumigated and are covered entirely in blue tents. The occupants must stay away from their homes for two days.
A generational gap is revealed here. Paul has had no difficulty in accepting that girls play on the soccer team. He knows how good a player like Maya is. But this is news to his mom, who feels that the girls must be at some disadvantage when playing against boys. Maya is puzzled by this attitude.
Friday, September 29
Mom has been in touch with the Tangerine Times about the girls on the soccer team, and at soccer practice, Mr. Donnelly, the newspaper publisher, shows up with a photographer. He wants to interview Shandra and Maya. However, as soon as Shandra sees the reporters’ van, she runs off, not wanting any publicity. Victor then shows up and immediately assumes that it is he that the reporters want to write about. Mr. Donnelly explains to Coach Wright that it is the girls who are newsworthy, not the boys. Wright gives him Maya’s name, and Mr. Donnelly and the photographer drive off, without having spoken to her. The next day there is a picture in the paper of what is said to be Maya, but actually the newspaper has made a mistake and the picture is in fact of another girl from the school named Nita.
Shandra is publicity-shy. Only later will the reader learn the significance of this. Victor’s unthinking arrogance, assuming that he must be the object of the journalist’s interest, provides some comedy.