Saturday, May 16, 2009

Getting into the Zone

I'm not really running up my blog posts, but it seems the past few days I've had the opportunity and the inclination to put down some of my random thoughts in this space. Obviously, I'm all over the place, not settling down on any particular one but trying to keep with my various interests.

I also noticed it has become rather "sport"-y here of late, because of the ongoing NBA Playoffs. I'm not into fantasy or other amusements others get into, but I do follow the game almost religiously. That's because basketball was one of the few things the men in our family all got to do and more or less agreed about. We watched the game not from a fan perspective of being entertained, but in terms of how each player displayed his character, and how well a certain coaching philosophy brings out the best from particular players. It was rather ironic (and unfortunate) that I didn't grow up to be athletic - I guess I hit the books more than I did the basketball court, but my jumper was solid and if I played "Base-ketball" (c/o Parker and Stone of "South Park") I would have done a lot of damage.

Anyhow, sports edifies life --- it captures the essence of the struggle of life, and through its duality of cooperation-competition we also get to understand what it means to be human. That sappy NBA TV commercial with the kids and basketball stars on the similarites of basketball and life rings true.

Watching sports, such as a tennis/football match or basketball game, breaks down life into simplicity. Naturally one wants to be a better person, but to get there one has to earn it, get the necessary repetitions, turn the habit first into a skill, then a mind-set. Of course it isn't that simple when one gets to implementation - while I believe in the value of coaching/mentoring, it's something that hasn't caught on with me. I haven't committed to it yet. Someday I will. (As to finding the right life coach...we-ell, good luck son!)

So far, sports has been the only bright spot --- the rest of life these days is a struggle to fight off monotony. As the groups with whom I am associated have no major production at this point (I don't know if I have the "fire" for this anymore) there is no variety in my life. As for romance, I'm not so sure. I am not as sanguine as I would have liked, which is hardly fair to the particular girl in question.

I don't want to make it another "it's not you, it's me" statement, because I like her a great deal - but I'm not doing enough to show it. Besides, no one gets away with that kind of cop-out without being savaged by recriminations (along the lines of "insensitive," "asshole," and worse, "gay!") or racked by guilt (also along the lines of "insensitive," "asshole," and "gay!") Let's say that however I want to change my personal life, I am not prepared to make the sacrifices necessary to make it happen. In my defense, I have acknowledged this failing and am not making any excuses. However, it's rather late in the day and the proverbial window of opportunity won't stay open forever.

As with sports I have to hunker down on my life and build the habit. Do as many repetitions as possible. Watch the form and the release of my shot. Get into better conditioning. Prepare myself for mental and physical breakdowns. Roll with the groove. Get into the zone.

Living life beyond watching sports, or whatever form of entertainment, means seizing the challenge within one's life and not projecting one's life in the struggle of others. If we knock our athletes/celebrities for not doing their job well, why can't we take time to shape up on our own?

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