To the utter surprise of almost no one, I’ve had some “down days” in my history. I’ve also had more than a few “up days”, but the bad ones outnumber the good ones by, roughly, a bunch. So, what goes into the record when the final tally is made?
What matters is positioning at the end. That’s the part that counts.
As an example, go to the horse races and place a bet. Then, when your chosen steed is in the lead at the second turn, try to cash in your “winning ticket”. The people at the payoff window will tell you to go away until the race is over. Having the lead at any point is still not winning. You’ve gotta be out front when the finish line cameras are snapping pics.
Major League Baseball. Call your bookie and see if you can claim the pot when your team has a three run lead at the end of the seventh inning. Unless the umpires have called the game because of rain, it’s “Sorry, Charlie”. Even if your team just finished batting in the ninth inning with a three run lead, if you’re the “away team”, it’s still a no-go. The home team will always get a final at-bat and bets aren’t paid until afterward. Even then, if the home team scores three runs and ties it, there’s extra innings. The longest game ever in Major League Baseball happened May 1st, 1920, when Boston and Atlanta went 26 innings … ending in a draw with the score 1-1. No payoff.
Try football. Just because your team leads by 17 points when the two minute warning comes about doesn’t mean you clean up. Those final two minutes can encompass ten minutes on a real clock and, with some of the quarterbacks playing these days, no lead is ever secure until time fully runs out. That’s the most exciting part of any football game and just being out front does not a title bestow.
As the much venerated Lawrence Peter Berra once told us, “It ain’t over ’til it’s over“. That means you’ve still gotta hear the fat lady sing. (Not a Yogiism). Nothing enters the record book until it’s over. Finis. Not “part way” or “mostly”, but finalized.
Yet, even then, how do we know the real winner? Is it merely based on appearances? Do we give the blue ribbon to the one who outwardly looks as if he has all the chips and won the poker tournament? Hell, no, we don’t!
This flit of time we’re running through is a passage called “life”. It’s but a prelude to “the big game” we all await playing later on. In this case, we’re all in the semi-finals, getting ready for the major tournament.
The part of life that really counts is what you are, and what you’ve done to make a mark on this world, on the day you die. All the rest is trimmings and bows. You will only win this prep tournament if what you’ve become is what you’re supposed to be. Better, no one can just say you’re the winner. If you are, you’ll feel it. If you don’t feel it inside, you already have the real answer. It all comes down to how … and how well … people remember you.
I’m just sayin’.
If you like these blogs, subscribe here. You’ll get a free copy of my novel, “The Shimmering Image” and help the 4,500,000 homeless in our country. Ad revenues earned on this site go to help the homeless community.