Bottoms up, or Tops down?

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I truly like to watch sports.  But keep reading.  This isn’t really about sports, so much.

I only say this because I watched the final round of The Masters on Sunday.  For those of you who don’t follow sports, so much, The Masters is a golf tournament, held yearly in Augusta, Georgia.  It is steeped with prestige, honor and tradition, in the “hit a little ball with a stick” world.

A young guy named Jordan Spieth won it last year.  This year, it looked like he would win it again. This guy is of the “SO VERY GOOD” variety.  He had a five stroke lead heading into the final nine holes of the tournament.  That’s huge.  But then he played the 12th hole.  He had played it already 3 times in this tournament.  Extremely well.  But this time… he choked with a capital C.  He shot a quadruple bogey… which means it took him 7 shots to knock that little ball in the hole.  He was supposed to do it in three.  There wasn’t even a guy in a mask with a hockey stick guarding the hole.  It was just Jordon, the little ball, his golf stick.

Needless to say, he came unraveled and lost.  It was excruciating to watch.

(Hey.  It sure sounds like I’m writing about sports, but I swear, I’m not.)

This entire scenario made me think of  World Class Somebodies.   Spieth is a World Class Golfer.  He is ranked one of the best in the world.  We typically see World Class Somebodies in the world of athletics.  But there are World Class ranks of every profession and activity on earth.

World Class Chefs, Scientists, Doctors, Actors, Architects, Writers, Nurses, Computer System Analysts, Massage Therapists, Lawyers, Programmers, and the list goes on endlessly.

They are the best of anyone else. The smartest, the brightest, the most talented.  The “Cream of the Crop” and “The Top of the Hill.”

What makes people that way?  Are they born with it?  Or do they just work like crazy?  Or a little bit of both?

I think it is probably a little bit of both.  But when you are the very best, and you come unglued… well… I bet it is devastating on that person.

But here is the thing I really want to know.  Normally, when we see someone break under the pressure of being the best… it is an athlete.

I have never been eating in an acclaimed restaurant, and witnessed the chef run out of the kitchen, screaming… “The soufflé just fell. The soup is scorched.  And the puree is too thin.  I’m ruined. Ruined I tell you. Ruined.”  Or a lawyer, in a courtroom, throw down her oversized legal pad, kick her brief case across the floor, and yell… “I object to all of this.  Every little bit of this.  I OBJECT!”  And then run full tilt out of the courtroom.

No.  We don’t see those meltdowns.  Or at least we never hear of them.

Just athletes.

You know, for a long time, I wanted to be a World Class Something.  But I don’t do well under pressure.  That’s why I am a content, middle-of-the-road body.

But in my life… in my walking around and meeting people, I know a lot of World-Class-This-And-Thats.  Not only are they really good at what they do in life… be it a business person, a realtor, an artist, a massage therapist, a community leader, and on.  But they are world-class in a different way.

They are the ones that have World-Class-Hearts.  The kind of people who are kind, compassionate, engaged, and caring.  They are the ones who make you smile, even when you are not with them.  And they never seem to falter under pressure.  I am lucky… very lucky… to know as many as I do.

The ones with the golden hearts. The special inner-spirits. The Cream of the Crops.  The “So Very Goods.”

And I thank you.


“Be not afraid of greatness. Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them.” ― William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night


“You were born with potential.
You were born with goodness and trust. You were born with ideals and dreams. You were born with greatness.
You were born with wings.
You are not meant for crawling, so don’t.
You have wings.
Learn to use them and fly.”
― Rumi