Friday, December 3, 2010

It's Not Just a Game, It's Life!!

Greetings Happy People,

Last week, I saw an amazing college football game between the University of Nevada Wolf Pack and the Boise State Broncos. Weeks before this game, I had a strong feeling that this was going to be one interesting game. And boy it was an awesome game.

How exciting was it? Let me take you to the 4th quarter with only a few seconds left in the game. The Wolf Pack came from a pretty big deficit to tie the football game. They kicked the ball to Boise State. After the Boise State quarterback threw a 70-yard pass to the wide receiver. It was time for the place kicker to kick the game winning field goal. He walked on to the field, kicked the ball, and missed the field goal!! The game was about to go into overtime!!

In overtime, the same kicker had another chance to kick a field goal from a very short distance. He walked on to the field, kicked the ball, and missed again!! On the other end of the ball, the Nevada place kicker walked on to the field, kicked the ball and won the game for Nevada!! This win was not only the biggest victory for the Wolf Pack, but a very devastating loss for Boise State because they had a chance to play for a National Championship. My heart went out to that place kicker from Boise State. I can only imagine what he is going through.

Days later, I saw him on Sportscenter – ESPN’s sports news program. He mentioned that he got plenty of threats and negative responses from missing those two game winning field goals. If I were to talk to him right now, I would tell him that better days will come ahead.

This game reminded me of three other games. One took place back in the mid 80’s and the other two took place in the mid 90’s.

For the first game, let me take you back to the 1986 World Series. The Boston Red Sox were playing the New York Mets for the baseball championship. The Red Sox were just one win and one out away from winning their first World Series since 1918. The bases were loaded for the Mets and they were one score away from winning and tying the series 3 games a piece. The Mets batter came up to bat. He hit the ball to first base and a Red Sox first baseman Bill Buckner missed the easy grounder causing the Mets to win that game. The Mets also won the next game clinching their first World Series since 1969. After this game, Boston never forgave Buckner for his Game 6 mistake.

For the second game, let me take you to the 1993 World Series. The Philadelphia Phillies were playing the Toronto Blue Jays. Phillies pitcher Mitch Williams threw a pitch that led to a home run. This home run clinched a second straight World Series Championship for the Blue Jays. After this game, people in Philadelphia were cruel to Mr. Williams. He got threatening mail, hateful phone calls, and jeered wherever he went.

While these treatments were not good for the Boise State place kicker, Bill Buckner, and Mitch Williams, it was better than the next person I will mention, Andres Escobar. Andres was a soccer player that played for the Columbian soccer team in the 1994 World Cup. Before the tournament, Colombia was considered one of the favorites to win the championship. Unfortunately, they never got past the first round.

In the second match, the heavily favored Colombian soccer team played against the United States. The game went well for the Colombians until one mistake happened. In an effort to prevent the Americans from getting the ball, Andres accidentally kicked the ball into the team’s own goal. This helped the United States win the match. I remembered watching this game and feeling bad for Mr. Escobar. It was a mistake he wish he never made.

When Andres returned to Colombia, he not only got the negative jeers from the people, he also lost his life. Apparently an angry soccer fan shot him multiple times on the streets of Medellin. Talk about taking things too far.

These stories I shared with you are stories where people made key mistakes that cost them the game. For one person, it cost him his life. One can imagine what these gentlemen were thinking during their moments.

While many of us may not be professional athletes, we made mistakes in our lives. Sometimes it feels bigger than what it is. These mistakes can happen in our jobs, our family lives, and anywhere else. Whenever a mistake happens, we must do our best to move forward with our lives.

This may be easier said than done, but in order for us to not wallow in pity, we must move on. If we don’t, we will be in worse shape than before. Life is too short to stay in one place. If you have to, do something else to pass the time. You will have better days when you move on. You will be a winner in the game of life!!

That is all I have for now. Take care and thank you for your time and attention.


Jesse I-I-I

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