Failure is Just Part of the Hero’s Arc

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First off I’d be remiss if I didn’t give a shout out to my esteemed colleague Cheeseman on his beautifully considered words yesterday (as well as his picks!).

The Big One?

The Big One?

Los Feliz Region 1567–The U-10 team I coach, the Redd Foxxes,  beat those big dummies in the first round of our playoffs last weekend but then got thumped the next day by the eventual champs, a true heart breaker that nearly sent a number of the kids off to join Elizabeth.  You ever deal with multiple sobbing 9 year olds?  They don’t go over that in the AYSO manual.  The good news is we bounced back this past Saturday and, on a miraculous goal by one of our (let’s say) not exactly strongest players, we beat a very tough team to earn some sweet third place medals.  Winning is better than losing, that’s a truism if ever there was one, but just as true is that the losses are what make the wins so much sweeter.  That seems like a good enough theme to keep in mind today.

Ronda Rousey was on top of the world, having arm-barred her way into the zeitgeist to the point that when she lost Saturday night, it was real news.  This wasn’t exactly a Buster Douglas kind of upset out of nowhere, as new champ Holly Holm was a skilled boxer able to elude Rousey’s grasp and deliver a kick to the head that got the concussion talks going.  Rousey by all accounts (and cheap intimidation tactics) was due to be taken down a peg or two…and with her already due to take some time off (to work on movies, like her own life story, that suddenly don’t seem quite as green-light ready), this has the makings of a triumphant return to redemption that really makes a marketable athlete.  And here we are, helping fuel the narrative.  Well done, Ms. Rousey, well done.

Peyton Manning passed Brett Favre to become the Counting Stat King of Quarterbacks yesterday, but in what has already been categorically the worst season of his career, this was rock bottom.  Hobbled by foot and shoulder problems, the game-plan hoped to get the record out of the way, get a lead, and then take him out.  Manning torpedoed it right from the onset with a performance so bad even Chicken Parm sandwiches were embarrassed to be associated with him.  Why they didn’t protect him with a safer gameplan–all shotguns and pistols and quick releases–is beyond me…but, with any luck, this actually is rock bottom and there’s nowhere to go but up, and Manning’s got a shot at redemption with that defense if he can somehow manage these games.

The New York Giants just seem to have the Patriots’ number…is what everyone was thinking as they watched the Blue build an early lead yesterday, and then watched the inevitable meltdown/screwjob (depending on your point of view).  Say what you will, but these Giant games have been the most consistently entertaining this year, and perhaps this can this be the 2007 spark they need to propel them back through the playoffs?

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West Coast Craig reports from Hollywood with an endearingly laid back style. A happily married father of two little boys, WCC has an avocado tree in his yard, plays the hot corner in a "Valley" hardball league and always manages to take cool sports-related mini road-trips, often with his immediate clan. He hails from Oneonta, NY but has been "So very L.A." for twenty years, so his sports teams are the Yankees AND the Dodgers, the Pittsburgh Steelers, the L.A. Lakers and the Colorado Avalanche/Quebec Nordiques. WCC loves bacon-wrapped hotdogs and can touch his heel and his ear... with his hand.

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