London Bridges

Aside from my already publicly confessed love of the Red Sox (Yes still), I’m not much of a sports guy. However, in a previous post I spoke some about tennis. One of the things I like about the game is it’s global aspect. Men and Women from different countries coming together to play a game. I am trying to love soccer for that very reason as well. I’m not there yet, but I’m trying. All these people from completely different cultures and backgrounds who find common ground with a ball. It might be a big leather ball with sewn dimples, or a small yellow fuzzy one, but there is a sense of community.

The ultimate example of global community and competition is almost here, the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. I’m fairly slow to the whole Olympic thing. I remember watching the Winter Olympics that took place in Norway in the mid 90’s, but that was more about me wanting to see reindeer. But by watching, I found out that I did kind of like watching some of the winter sports. I also learned that I have a (previously) unspoken love for Norwegian music. Also, and this must be said; I just don’t get curling.

The Summer Olympics quite frankly were just a foreign concept to me.. Running…in the summer? I’m a chubby white guy in Texas. I simply cannot relate to that idea. I don’t run unless someone’s chasing me. And Swimming (I call it floating) is for relaxation, not speed.

Enter Beijing 2008. China is such a closed society, I was curious what their handshake with the world would look like, so I watched the opening ceremonies. I’m glad I did. Those ceremonies remain the single most amazing artistic performance I have ever witnessed. Years later I try and find words to describe what I saw, and how it affected me. Gratitude and awe remain the truest.

I was so caught up with the whole experience I found myself watching as much of the games as I could. I found it inspiring. Exhibiting both national pride and a sense of worldwide community. From world superpowers to nations of one. I watched volleyball, track, even badminton. I had never watched a swimming competition, nor had I really felt I was missing much by abstaining, but like everyone else I wanted to watch the miracle that was Michael Phelps. It was amazing.

The Olympics show us the incredible feats that one man or one woman can accomplish, whether individually, or as part of a team. They also show us the beauty of the whole. What is unique. What is the same.

We are a nation apart. Red, Blue. Pro-this, Anti-that. We stand across from each other based on silly things. Also very real things. It’s not for me to say which is which.

That time has come again where for a few weeks the world seems a little smaller. Where two athletes who play for countries whose Governments are at war, can remember that we are nations of individuals. One man, one woman helping another who has fallen, up off the pitch, or off the track. A smile, a touch, a hug. No matter the global economy, the most valuable thing we can give one another is free.

One World

Published in: on July 26, 2012 at 1:49 AM  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. beautiful. Thank you.

  2. I’m just catching up with non work stuff from last week. Wow. Just beautiful. I wish you wrote every day, because what a beautiful way it would be to start each of my days!

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