Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Thoughts on Winning and Losing

Last night I found myself cheering for the other team. Not because I especially liked the other team but because they managed a valiant comeback and defeated our team. I felt bad for my son and his fellow teammates but I also felt good about the opposing team's ability to mount a final surge against all odds.

What I didn't enjoy, and frankly found somewhat repulsive, was the attitude of the opposing team's coach and parents. Being a little different, my younger son and I decided to sit in the bleachers closest to the entrance which just so happened to be the visiting team's bench. To sum it up, our claps and cheers were met by silence and a few turned heads. Nonetheless, as the came unfolded, I heard several comments from these parents and a few remarks by the coaches that seemed unfair. At one point, with their team behind, one gentleman professed quite loudly that the coach needed to move to a "bigger" lineup in order to better match up with ours. I also heard lots of snide remarks about the referees and the "unfairness" of many of the calls. But, what really set me off was the yelling from the parents and coaches at the kids themselves. You'd a thought these kids were playing for all the marbles or something like that. Instead, I wanted to remind the parents that they were watching 7th grade basketball and that these kids are only12 and 13 years old.

As the game came to a conclusion and it was evident who was going to win, I was honestly a little relieved. If the visiting team had lost, and these parents had to leave the building with such a weight, I'm not sure what would have happened. Thankfully, their kids came out on the winning side and after enduring what they endured from both their coach and parents, I was really happy for them. Nevertheless, I hope and pray that I don't ever come across this way as a parent. Winning and losing graciously is not easy but it sure does say a lot about one's character.