Saturday, June 25, 2005


I sit here on this Saturday evening with a lot in my past but not much on my mind. I can write all about the various experiences of camp, from getting schooled by Div-I basketball players to coaching a group of 9-year olds from last place to a championship. I can recount all of my encounters with cool basketball players as well as the accolades received from one of the game's most esteemed coaches. And yet, I sit here on this evening feeling finally let down. There was always something "cooler" to be gained, and yet now there really isn't. I kept trying to tell myself that I was being childish and delusional, and yet I couldn't keep myself from desiring to be in the middle of something that always seemed so important. It's not that important. Watching the middle school nerds from the TIP program walk around with their instruments and neon nametags, I realize that their eventual contribution is just as "cool." Why are athletes so cool? What made the Cinderella Man, James J. Braddock, an inspiration to a nation amongst many individuals who worked hard to establish themselves in the depression and fight for goodness and righteousness. What makes us care so much? Much has been written about how sports imitates life and puts everything on a grander scale. How sports can produce movie-like storylines in real life. How sport and competition have always been so crucial for functioning societies, back to the ancient Greeks and Romans. Then after making such grand claims of profound significance, these same writers revert to admitting that sports, in the end, merely imitates life. What is this life that we are imitating? I know so many individuals who have spent so many years training, competing, and coaching that I am not too sure what type of life goes on outside of sports. Politics? Social interaction? Justice? Learning? Is that life? Well those are all extremely fundamental elements of the sports realm and always have been. Why am I even saying realm? There is no realm that separates "sports" from "life." At this point, you are probably asking yourself what my point is. Where is this going? Well it is a circle, because I have no conclusion to make. Only questions to ask. Or are those questions conclusions in and of themselves?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

One way to look at it is that it's not the actions involved in sports that imitates the actions in life, it's rather the emotions and feelings that resonate in common between sports and life. Sure, you can make parallels between education and training, successes and game victories, etc., but the tangible transmission from sports to life is the cycle of your feelings throughout the highs, lows, and plateaus of the ride (whichever "realm" that happens to be). You can come full circle in one game, in one season, in one year, or in one lifetime. What you remember is not what you did, but how you felt.