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Love for the Other

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California State University, Dominguez Hills
University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Created: February 20, 2006
Latest Update: February 20, 2006

E-Mail Icon jeannecurran@habermas.org
takata@uwp.edu

Index of Topics on Site Thinking Beyond the Gold Medal

Love is sharing good times and bad. Love is seeing the broader picture that includes others. Monday morning I found Karen Crouse's article on Joey Cheek, and thought of Brenda's kindness to a 79 year-old woman. Love is remembering others and sharing your joy in living.

There are lots of serious things wrong with the No Child Left Behind Program. Most of them include focussing on what children can't do instead of what they can, and helping them grow from there. We arleady knew they were failing tests. We don't need to give them more tests to fail. We need to love them, respect them, believe in them.

Joey Cheek recognized this principle in his gift of $40,000 to "Right to Play, a humanitarian organization based in Toronto that is focused on helping disadvantaged children through sports." Cheek Makes the Most Out of Gold After Missing Out on Crimson by Karen Crouse, New York Times, Monday, February 20, 2006. Backup.

Chad Hedrick, in an NBC interview, spoke of the concern he had that young people give up at an early age if they don't skate well enough to win medals. Hedrick emphasized the joy of the sport and that all should be encouraged to play for the joy of playing. I still remember the fun I had playing tennis after school in high school. At the end of two years I finally hit the ball over the net, and the teacher was ecstatic. No, I'm not disabled; just klutzy. But I like Chad Hedrick's understanding of the klutzy folks, too.

And finally, today, I checked out the Interview with Shani Davis and Joey Cheek after their gold, silver medals win in the Olympics. The quick interviews on NBC glossed over the tensions on the long-track skating tensions when Shani Davis refused to skate the Pursuit. They just pointed out there were tensions. In the Q & A's on the Olympic Speed Skating site, Shani explained; and he and Joey Creek showed great respect for one another. This emphasizes the importance of not limiting ourselves to sound bites and the need to listen in good faith to the validity claims of all.

DAVIS: Ever since I was a kid, I would joke around with my friend and I would say, 'man, someday I want to win the 1,000 meter. Because I was always going the 1,000 meter at the pack-style. It gave me just enough time to get up to speed because a lot of kids would beat me in the one lap when I was a midget and a juvenile and stuff like that. So I started thinking about having the opportunity to be able to chase that dream to win the 1,000. It's kind of complicated because all my life it was individual events, you know? Short track had the team events. You train with the national team and you go to relay camps and things like this, and you train to be part of the team if you make that team. And I was pre-qualified in the 1,000, I was pre-qualified in the 1,500 and I was pre-qualified in the 5,000. At the Olympic Trials for long track, they named an Olympic team And they also named other people just to come here who did not make the Olympic team to skate the pursuit.

I'm going to say this again, I'll say this 100 times. After the Olympics in 2002 when I went there I didn't partake in anything, I wasn't even able to practice because I wasn't named the fifth man, they took six people. I told myself I would never, ever take anyone else's opportunity to skate at the Olympic Games if I there was something I was going for myself at the Olympic Games. And I stuck to my word.

And when asked: "How do you feel you skated tonight?" Cheek responded that he couldn't top Davis's story about feeling like a candy bar in a vending machine. He just wanted a medal, to be chosen, too. Clear evidence that he had been listening to Davis, and acknowledgement of a respect for the analogy. That was followed by the excellent question, " What would you each take from each other's skating?" and the attentive, thoughtful answers each gave.

I'm so glad that I went out on the Internet to give you more information on all this. It made my day.

love and peace, jeanne



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