Sunday, October 28, 2007

The sports page

Morality tales: In recent NY Times PLAY magazine, we have Steve Nash, the intensely focused and driven eluder of obstacles, who glows and flows and does the right thing for charity and society and so on and so forth.

And then there's marathoner Alberto Salazar, the intensely focused and driven bust-througher of obstacles who burns out and crashes early, even dies prematurely from intensity/heart attack earlier this year, before getting fibrillated back to give born-again lectures to devout crowds.

Two sides of the same coin. How do you know which is which when they're 14, 16, 21? Is it random?

At one point in time Salazar tells the tale of seeing a drowned boy pulled from a pond near Boston. He reflects: "I guess another boy might have prayed that such a terrible thing would never happen to him. He would pray, in other words, that he would never die. But I didn't prary for that kind of mercy. I asked God that when my time came to die, I wouldn't be afraid. Well, my prayer was answered." Talk about competitive. He's trying to outpray imaginary adversaries. Way to go!

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