Friday, October 12, 2012

More of a challenge...

It's the weirdest concept. How often I hear someone say 'I shoot (insert appropriate bla bla here) because it is more of a challenge'. But they aren't World Champions, they aren't National Champions... They're average... Often below average achievers.  So how does one define a challenge? When there is a bench mark and you haven't gotten there one would suppose one is still 'challenged'.

In Barre they often say if you find this easy then try this and challenge yourself. Archery hasn't struck me as any different. The guys who hold the world records don't say oh that's easy I give up... They usually step up and push for the next challenge. Someone asked Clint Freeman what he would do if he shot 1440 and he said he would probably complain it wasn't a perfect X count... May be just a rumour..I've never asked Clint if it was true, but it sounds good :)

And often the one's who say this bow is more challenging than that... Never achieved all that high with either... Medals in a division of one or where the level is so poor as to make amateur an exaggeration. Or backyard braggarts who can shoot a legendary score in their own company, but never seem to pull it out when it counts. Always gives me a giggle when some braggart as naive as any brash child steps up and shoots a ten first arrow at ten metres and announces 'this is easy!'. Oh child let me show you the error of your ways...imagine the Olympic sprinter had given up running after winning their first race and so never makes the Olympics... How many wannabes became never was-es after announcing 'it's too easy'. So easy they never achieved anything.

So I say step up or shut up. You get to say it's easy when you have achieved all there is to achieve. Before that you're making excuses and seeking the easy option where you don't feel pressured to show achievement because it's 'harder'...otherwise you're doing it because you just enjoy that option more and are too spineless to stand by your choice. I don't find much easy. I'm smart but not that smart. I'm coordinated but not that coordinated. I find everything presents challenges if you want to be good.

So glad I'm a girl. I get to shoot because I like shooting and don't need to make excuses for it :)

Monday, October 1, 2012

She's so lucky. Yeah me and Brittany.

I heard a thing the other day...'you're so lucky'. I've heard this before and one has to wonder... am I?

Now don't get me wrong, my life is pretty awesome....My family loves me, I'm well educated, my boyfriend is cuter than a bug's ear and the nicest guy I ever met, I like my job, I've won a few gold medals and shot a few records in my chosen sport, I haven't had a pimple since I was a teenager, my friends are great people and I'm not ugly. Who could complain?

But is it lucky? I adore my family, I studied hard, I strive to be a good person, I work hard days and long hours, I practice archery as much as I am able, I make effort on my appearance and I try to be a good friend. Is that all just luck? Can I drop the ball and stop trying and keep all this luck? Will my job just do itself and I'll still get paid? If I spent every cent on cigarettes and alcohol would my savings plump themselves up? If I sleep instead of studying all night will the knowledge just manifest between my ears at will?

Well I already know I can't miss practice and expect to hit the target and when I don't study I fail exams. And I know that peppermint tea and wishes won't make my pancreas work (no joke some well meaning nut job tried to tell me this in earnest once... said if I still died it was because I didn't want the tea to work strongly enough...obviously, why didn't I think of that?)...I know I'll get fired if I don't rock up to work, and the government campaign - 'Every cigarette is doing you damage' is less effective on me than 'every cigarette costs a few dollars that you could use to buy some new shoes' (and shoes don't smell half as bad)....And if you don't treasure your friends and look after them... one day you just don't have any.

And if I'm so damn lucky, did it run out when God was handing out pancreases (or is that pancrei?). Hands up who would trade a gold medal or two for their slightly used but fully functional pancreas? Some might view diabetes as less than lucky. Do I run around pointing at random people and accusing them of being lucky because they can drink the maple syrup? Well maybe somedays when I think I'm being funny, but I think I have better things to do with my time than coveting pancreases and cursing the lucky bastards who have good ones. Unlike grass which may now and then prove greener (but just as likely not) other pancreases are almost always in better nick than mine and the wanting of them improves me none.

So I call shenanigans on 'luck'. I don't know anyone that I would call lucky. People earn their 'good luck' with hard work. The crappy thing about bad luck is that it's a lame excuse. Everyone has their lot in life. And no matter how crap you think yours is there is always someone who got shafted worse who probably complains less.

And apparently luck isn't doing me any favours today. No practice for two weeks and a week in Thailand and I can't hit the proverbial standing inside with the doors shut. I think by accident I should have hit more gold. But I also think the bow shoulder is holding :) and if you have paid any attention in the last 4 years, you will know that is worth a smile.

Bangkok was a melting pot of corruption and pollution. We got kidnapped by taxi drivers, cheated by restaurants and rained on everyday and I'm pretty sure that wasn't just water falling from the sky and at least one of the boys came running out of a massage looking a little wild about the eyes when the massage came with more than expected. But a flotilla of 65 tuk tuks through the city and a trip to one of the royal temples would rate pretty highly on my list of must dos. And chilli... lots of chilli :) most awesome ingredient ever besides chocolate.

And now I'm home (well in my usual hotel), the air is clean, the rain is water and the sky is actually blue. Shenanigans or not there are worse kinds of luck.