Random Thoughts from a Restless Mind

Dr. Darrell White's Personal Blog

Cape Cod

Sunday musings 7/14/13

Sunday musings…

1) Aquisitive. Covetous, with a bonus syllable.

2) House. Downsizing, but upgrading. Mrs. bingo gets it right, again.

3) Festival. The CrossFit world is chock-a-block full of weekend competitions. Some, like “CrossFit for Hope”, “Hope for Kenya”, and the annual FGB, are a uniquely CrossFitty way to support large, grand charitable goals. We’ll have one for the “Hotshots” on August 19th I believe it is, to remember and support the families of the Prescott firefighters who recently died.

Those are all examples of CrossFit and CrossFitters playing “long ball”, going for the home run, the big hit. Just as CrossFit is growing in what seems to be inexorably exponential on the grand scale, so too are smaller, more intimate, local gatherings becoming the norm. Every weekend there’s a place in your town where one or two or twelve boxes are doing something that involves a competition

In my neighborhood this weekend it was the “Team Williams Showdown” at CrossFit NFT. Way out in the country, not in the least bit suburban, no fewer than 20 gyms sent athletes to compete and members to cheer. A get-together for the fun of feeling butterflies flip (no prize money), meet some new folks, and provide a little bit of financial support for Kim Williams as she travels to Carson. I knew almost no one there, and yet it felt like what Aromas 1 must have been like. I felt like I’d known everyone forever.

All we needed was a little Coors Light.

4) Amateur. The last amateur to win the U.S. Open in golf was Bobby Jones, Jr. in 1930. Indeed, the last true amateur, someone who doesn’t play golf full time, who won the U.S. Amateur did it more than 20 years ago, perhaps longer. Track and Field, swimming, ski racing, you name it. The days of championships being won by amateurs, especially part-time amateurs, are over. As extinct as your favorite Dodo or Rhino or what have you. Survival of the fittest is a full-time gig, now with a paycheck.

Willy B. Sutton could have been quoting Darwin.

As I look around at the CrossFit Games I find much the same. Mind you, this is neither good nor bad on its face; it just is. The athletes who have a truly legit chance at a podium spot simply cannot be described as part-time. There are no hobbyists. There are hardly any we could describe as amateur. We had our Roger Bannister moment last year as we watched Julie Foucher take Silver. That may have been it.

Did anyone know this would occur? Was this all carefully planned, the result of some CrossFit “Star Chamber” years and years ago? Well, you’d certainly have to ask the people at the very center of the Games (Dave, Tony, Co@ch, etc), but I think they all expressed very honest surprise that two entire teams of sponsored (paid) CrossFit athletes (Pioneer awards to Rogue and Again Faster) could be assembled for the Tahoe Throwdown; Co@ch said as much on film. CrossFit as a sport should certainly be credited to HQ, but I think CrossFit as a PROFESSIONAL sport was a bit of a surprise, at least the speed at which it has become so.

Is it good? Is it bad? Does it even matter? Well, it’s certainly not for me to say. Personally, I am enjoying watching that tiny group of men and women who do the CrossFit that I do and do it for a living. Just like I enjoy a Sunday in front of the tube watching Tiger and Phil and Rory, or Natalie and Sun Re and Patty make a living playing golf so much better than I ever did. I pretend to see myself in Rich and Dan and Speal just like I did in college as a very average DB watching Ronnie Lott and Michael Haynes and Lester Hayes play my position. Lester even wore my number.

I still root for the amateur, though. Still harbor a secret little desire to see some Justin Rose win that British Open as a 17 year old, or some 32 year old stockbroker who plays on the weekend steal a U.S. Amateur from one of the Flatbellies one win away from turning pro. There’s a little catch in my throat when I think of Roger Bannister, the medical student, breaking the 4:00 barrier during a study break. SIR Roger Bannister.

Yeah…that was pretty cool. I still root for the amateur.

I’ll see you next week…

Posted by bingo at July 14, 2013 10:31 AM

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