September 10, 2000

Good Sports?


I spent way too many hours yesterday watching tennis on TV. It was Super Saturday at the U.S. Open, with the two men's singles semifinals and the women's final.

I don't know when I became a tennis fan exactly but originally it had something to do with Andre Agassi and his (then) long hair. I've enjoyed watching sports in one form or another all my life.

Tennis, like most games, is an exercise in futility. Slamming a ball back and forth over a net isn't a useful endeavour. I've also been following golf lately, and a sillier game than that does not exist. What fascinates me about these sports (and any sport I care to invest some attention in) is the psychology behind it. For instance, what makes someone who's at the brink of losing, rally and pull out a miraculous win? Conversely, why does someone with a substantial lead sometimes falter and lose?

I'm not referring here to sports such as Major League Baseball, the NFL, NBA, or NHL, although maybe I should include the dreaded Eric Lindros, for even considering continuing his career after repeated concussions. How many millions does he already have? How many more does he need?

Money is not the type of motivator that I'm attempting to discuss here. Tiger Woods has already made around $7 million this year alone, and has a miserable cold that won't go away.. why doesn't he just put up his feet and relax, rather than competing this weekend in Toronto? Why did Todd Martin, the tennis player, hang on for five sets at last year's US Open, to the point where he needed to be rehydrated with an intravenous after the match?

I watch these competitors and try to learn from them. I search their faces for a hint of what they might be feeling. I try to find ways to apply these lessons to my own life. I don't have that kind of drive and ambition. One of my biggest problems has been the inability (reluctance?) to set goals. If I have a goal I'm committed to, I'm ok.. it's just taking that first step. I tend to drift along with the current for months, years, and even decades. It's not that I'm unhappy - I'm probably more content these last few years than I've ever been; it's just that, at age 48, I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.

Disclaimer: Rereading that, I'm tempted to not post it, but I will anyway. It's too teenage-angsty; I really am aware that I'm lucky in almost all aspects of my life. It's time to do some serious thinking about getting my life organized, getting out of the house, and giving something back.

Linque Du Jour:   Razorlab

I have no idea what this is.. but it's fun, sort of.

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