I was at an awards dinner last week, and I threw my arms around him with a big bear hug.
It had been awhile, but when you go back to your roots, homecoming is a wonderful feeling.
Joe had a twin brother, and they were helpful in getting me started in an earlier career in Athletics.
He said he remembered my Dad as being a great athlete, and more notably as a fine gentleman.
I said indeed he was. More importantly, he instilled in us the values of hard work, fair play, integrity, respect for others, and sportsmanship.
He asked about my golf game. I was a good athlete, but I made some choices about my priorities in spending time, and no longer carry a 3 handicap as I did in my glory days.
What goes around comes around.
Michele was standing there, and threw her arms around me.
“Coach” how are you doing she asked”,
“Awesome, how about you? What are you doing now?”
“Still teaching and coaching here at the high school.”
She was a fabulous athlete, and one of my former students and then co worker in recreation leagues.
“It was guys like you that got me into the business, and here I am 25 years later, and I still enjoy it.”
Like I said, what goes around comes around.
These athletes aged 80’s to the mid twenties were being inducted into the High School Hall of fame, and they were all deserving. Some played football at Penn State, Boston College, semi pro leagues, etc. One was a leading scorer for the state in basketball, some were athletes, some were coaches. All shared one common denominator: They deferred their success to their team mates and Mentors.
One of the young ladies caught my attention. She was a pitcher, and was in a handful of players who put the sport on the map locally. This was about 17 years ago when girls sports had not yet become fashionable.
She had a 50 – 25 record, throwing 3 no-hitters. Sophomore year she had an era of 2.05, her Jr year 1.29, , and as a Senior 2.14. She batted career over 400. She struck out over 525 batters, and pitched in almost every game since she was a freshman. She pitched in benefit games against celebrities like Joe Namath, giving back to the community that embraced her.
Numerous awards received ranged from MVP to sportsmanship to all-state honors.
She thanked her Grandparents for their unwavering support, attending games 400 miles away to see the summer league teams win a championship at Virginia Beach.
No time off for the elite.
She thanked her Dad and Mom for their support as well. When Dad pushed too hard, Mom knew how to keep things in their rightful perspective. Teamwork at its best.
Dad told her “If you want to be good at something, narrow your focus.” She gave up gymnastics, which was easy to do after she broke her arm falling off the balance beam one day, and began a love affair with softball. Then she refined her focus even more, defining herself as a pitcher.
They worked out incessantly, Dad catching while she pitched. “Sorry dad for all those bruised shins and the black eye I gave you when the ball took a bad hop off the indoor floor”. It was just part of the pain that comes with the territory of driving yourself to excellence.
Developing the Will to Win is a story better left for another day.
This lady being a natural athlete, Dad helped her to develop into a good pitcher. “Pitchers can’t hide on the mound; give praise to your team mates and stay humble in victory. When you suffer a defeat, as you will, accept it as your own with poise and grace as best you can.”
Lessons learned from a loving father can be priceless…
What goes around comes around.
Dad knew that he had taken her as far as he could, then asked colleagues for pitching coaches that could take her to the next level.
A shortcut to success is finding others who are already doing what you want to do and learn from them if they are willing to share with you. Recognizing our own limitations and getting help from those at the next level helps us climb the ladder.
This young lady was given a nice round of applause, as were all the fine athletes in attendance. She gave her Mom and me a big hug and a thank you, and my sacrifice of a 3 handicap seemed like a fair trade off.
I have learned we have to give before we get, and also that we have to give thanks for what blessings we have already received, with hope for continued blessings but none needed.
Family and friends, including my extended online family, I wish for you the best in the way of love, peace, and richness of experience.
During this Holiday season, may we remember to give to others as we have been given, and to help those who are hurting and need a hand.
Thanks to outstanding traders like @HamzeiAnalytics and @FuturesTrader71 , @CarlFutia and @MillerDon who help me continue to grow my own understanding of the market through their generous sharing of ideas.
If you want to take your game to the next level, find a mentor like these and continue to give before you get.
Last but certainly not least, thanks to the members who have joined our team and are building a vibrant community. I love the camaraderie and the feeling of family.