Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Becoming A Professional Sportsman

Some years ago, I realised that life was getting harder and harder and it didn't seem that a career in engineering would make it considerably softer. I had plans to get some cash boost by winning the lottery, but there was  some uncertainty in that, to say the very least. Then a thought crossed my mind, struck like a match and lit up my entire inner cupola. What if I became a professional sportsman? That ought to do it.

Let's look at football, for example. Allow me a little digression here, for my friends over the pond. Football, like US themselves, was invented in England. So I prefer to use the original word for the simple game played 11 by 11 and in which the Germans always win. Soccer will be left out for the moment. Digression closed. So, if we look at football, most players have a far richer life than an engineer. I am not talking here about people who wins golden boots and European cups. I am talking about footballers who play on the 3rd division, or even 4th, on the verge of the amateur level. They are doing just fine.

So here I am, working on my CV. What shall I say about myself with respect to football? I know I'm damn good at it, so it wouldn't be hard. First of all, I know about the offside rule. I could pinpoint a few good cases when a player is caught offside and also when he's not. On the other hand, my wife knows that too. Not that she ever wanted to learn it, but I explained it to her so many times and against her will, of course, that she learned it eventually. It won't help me tremendously.

Maybe a few words about my football abilities, which, as I mentioned before, are marvellous. And this makes me sad, truth be told. I realise I am so close to David Beckham's skills and still such a deep ravine between us. I see your scepticism and you probably think I'm out to breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but it's the mighty George Best who saw the similarities in us. You can't argue with the fifth Beetle, may he rest in calm peace now. He once said that David can't use his left foot (neither can I), can't tackle (I bruise like a peach, so no, thanks), can't head a ball (if God had wanted me to head balls he'd have made me swim on the other side of the river), can't dribble (last time I tried I was on the brink to break a leg and a ear), and he does't score often (some doubts here, but in the end he's married and so I am, little score is recorded anyway). Apart from that he's good, George concluded. Well, that must be the tiny difference between us. The "apart" bit. Life's so unfair to allow a small difference in skills to cause a huge distance in your achievements.

Sadly, I had to give up football. Although I am so very good at it, the destiny's clearly against me, and you can't fight your fate. I had to move to some other sports that I know and practice. Not so highly rewarded as football, but still. Ping pong was the first one to come to my mind. But I remembered immediately that I'd played once against a Chinese guy and I barely avoided hitting my forehead with the bat, following the ball's trajectory. I never thought ping pong could be that dangerous. Luckily, Chinese people are very polite, so at 18-0 he made a couple of mistakes so I could lose decently: 21-2. I didn't pursue it further.

Tennis was on my list as well, but at that time I wasn't the deft player I am today, so I gave up the idea very soon. Darts came in as well, with a great chance of success, but after I punched my toes with an arrow (I do appreciate the lack of questions here, thank you very much), I decided to think twice.

Then I got illuminated. I should start up a new sport. Something that I never dreamed of before. Something of a different magnitude. Something valuable as well. Something from the new world. To learn that, I had to go personally and watch it, learn it, practice it. I had to go to the new world. So next stop, New York! But that's a story for another time.

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