Today’s Prompt: Sherlock Holmes had his pipe. Dorothy had her red shoes. Batman had his Batmobile. If we asked your friends what object they most immediately associate with you, what would they answer?
This was a tough one. I struggled because I have no friends! Kidding (I hope)!
I guess it depends which of my friends will be asked this question. If you ask my high school friends, they would associate me with a basketball. All I did in my teens was play ball – all day and all night.
If you would ask my friends from university and most of my workmates, they would say that I am a bookworm, and hence associate me with books.
Lastly, if you would ask my relatively new friends, they would say that my Herbalife drinking bottle and shaker represents me the most. I have changed my lifestyle and have lost a lot of body fat mainly due to Herbalife’s superb programme.
Due to my inability to say ‘no’ to new things, I find myself difficult to pigeonhole. I do not want to be known just as a person who likes basketball, or just an academic, or just someone who has a healthy lifestyle. I try my best not to be uni-dimensional or a one-trick pony. Who knows, tomorrow I may have a new obsession!
When I was 10 years old, I was convinced I was going to be a professional basketball player when I grow up. I practised everyday for hours on end. I made huge strides in improving my dribbling, shooting and passing skills. I made sure I played against better players each day, and tried my best to beat them. I also remember not being able to sleep after my team lost a game.
Basketball was my life back then. I watched every single basketball game that was on TV. Homeworks, school projects and exams were disregarded and set aside. Lunch and breaktimes were spent playing basketball under the sun. I challenged the best players in my town to one-on-one games (I lost to most of them). I played until I cannot run anymore.
My dream of playing pro-ball ended when I broke both my ankles and tore the ligaments in my shoulder a few years ago. Doctors have advised me to quit basketball but I ignored them. I kept playing for two more years which made my shoulder worse. This forced me to sadly give up my childhood dream.
Although I suffered inside for a long time after that decision, I take solace from the fact that at the age of 10, I was able to focus on a goal. I have done everything that I can to advance and reach my goal. I was determined.
Though I failed to become a professional basketball player, my unparalleled determination and drive to succeed have stayed with me ever since. Nobody can tell me I can’t do something just because it’s too hard.
My pro-ball dream isn’t too far removed from what I do now, which is an educator of young people wigth Special Educational Needs. I enjoy my job as much as I used to enjoy basketball. I inspire other people as much as (I think) I would if I’m playing ball. What’s even better is that I am changing others’ lives much more with my current job than I feel I would ever have as a basketball player.
Recent football events involving John Terry and Luis Suarez (separate incidents) have caused a major stir in football. John Terry was caught on camera shouting racially abusive words towards Anton Ferdinand:
People can easily make out what Terry shouted towards Ferdinand. This incident caused John Terry to be stripped off the England captaincy, and is still being investigated. In a separate incident, Patrice Evra of Manchester United claimed he was also racially abused by Liverpool’s Luis Suarez in their match last year. This resulted in an 8-match suspension for Luis Suarez. However, in Liverpool and United’s match a few weeks ago, Suarez refused to shake Evra’s hand during the start of the game, causing the issue to remain unsettled:
Also recently, Chris Brown was slammed after winning a Grammy for the Best R&B Album (F.A.M.E.) and being nominated for both Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song, on top of being allowed to perform in the said awards show. People’s anger stems from Brown’s domestic abuse case against Rihanna which occured only a few years ago (disturbing details from official court documents available here).
These incidents highlights the responsibilities of these famous people. They must realize that day in, day out, they are in the public’s eyes. People search for their videos, pictures and the latest news about them. Every action should be calculated and precise because people of all ages from all over the world, thanks to the internet and the media, can know what they are up to. Whether they like it or not, they are role models. I am not saying that we all do everything that these celebrities and sports people do. However, I cannot deny the influence they have towards our choices. Otherwise, why put them in commercials? Terry and Suarez represents not only their teams’ ethos and pride, but also the whole of football. Similarly, Chris Brown represents hiphop and is a part of the whole music business.
What they’ve done is terrible and shouldn’t be done ever again. But I do believe that all of them deserve a second chance. There is no doubt that I am angry with each of them. No one should ever be allowed to beat up another human being, let alone your romantic partner. Nobody should get away with racially abusing someone else, regardless of whether the whole world is watching or not. But we all make mistakes, small or big. Yes, Terry, Suarez and Brown should know that they shouldn’t have done what they have but the damage has been done. I just wish that they have learned from their experiences.
People will always remember what these three have done to tarnish their reputation. It is up to them whether or not they want to win their fans (and the whole world) back and how they will do it. It is also up to us to give them a second chance. People should remember that we have a choice of whether or not we continue watching Terry and Suarez’s games, Brown’s concerts and whether or not we continue buying Brown’s records. I just hope that other celebrities and sports personalities learn from these mistakes.