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It Is Not About Winning

July 11, 2021

It is 5-something in the morning. Sweat and the TV are my companions. Forestalling death by old-man workouts retreat a day of thought into mornings of effort. I get nowhere but I am here.

Watching a 2020 game, repeated because everything else costs too much to produce, I watch two grown men in full contact, using everything they have to do what they try to do. They mostly fail, if perfection is the grade.

Here, one fails, and does everything right. His body is large, in the right place, angle, his feet never stop moving, but the other simply can do more.

Extreme effort and thought, reaction, lead one to fight through the extreme effort and thought of the other, and end the play of 22 men, all in extreme effort.

Yay! Triumph! Yes, but unseen is the years. Years of extreme effort, not seconds. Endless, isolated devotion. No reward except improvement. This, to me, is the gift of what we do not earn, but accept, and use. This is thousands of hours of a dozen years, simply showing in 6 seconds. No reward, maybe no consequence.

This is why we are alive.

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