We sports fans are a species of bottom-line thinkers.
Everything comes down to two things: Winning and losing.
We thump our chests and talk trash when our team wins.
We get offensively defensive when our team loses.
We are like a dog staring at a television set.
We twist our heads and fixate on the images in front of us.
Right now, it’s because of football. And football fans may be the worst of the subspecies.
They sit and scream at that TV, discuss and analyze every play, while trying to decide how a run up the middle will impact the season.
And when all else fails, blame the referee.
And it’s still the preseason.
Coaches, especially on the youth, high school and college levels, have come up with a way to keep their players from getting that distant stare.
It’s a variation of the famous quote, “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.”
In other words, the coach is trying to make everyone believe — including himself — that wins and loses don’t matter. It’s about the experiences learned while navigating through the season that counts.
It’s kind of an interesting concept, you know?
I started thinking about it, but in an alternate fashion.
A friend of mine recently took his family — including his 7-year-old son — on a long trip to see his daughter’s graduation from Naval training in Great Lakes, Ill.
The journey was 10 1/2 hours and 720 miles — one way. The season was about the journey, which was trying to keep his young son occupied so he didn’t get restless.
I wasn’t there, but kind of imagined it went something like this:
Dad: “Well, here we go, son. We are going on a nice car ride to go see your sissy. This will be fun. You’re going to see so many new things.”
Parasiliti: Getting there is more than half the fun
Bob Parasiliti (Joe Crocetta / April 15, 2012)