So, mentality is especially important when it comes to sports. There other trivial-looking tenets that play a giant role when it comes to 'prowess' in sports (in general) and i will touch on some over the course of this post. Yes, even 'histories and stories' play a role.
So, how is my mentality towards 'play'?
Hahaha, from childhood, there was almost 'no play'. Play was always serious stuff.
Well, to get to play, there were mountains of odds....Parents were strict and all. You could still get a beating for taking 1st position in your class (at the time), where you weren't 'first overall' (i.e across the entire school), or where you took 'first' with an 89% average.
You see, when you got 1st position, even with your 89% average, they will blame it on play. So yes, you could get a beating. You could get a beating each day, upon returning from school, if on these 'each day' your uniform carried heavy stains. Well, that's play too! I had to read even during my breaks because we were apportioned what to read, with pending questions (exam) when we returned home.
And so, i would play, pass by a water-depot on my way home and wash my stained uniform from their leaking tanks. Then i would put it back on, wet and it would dry before i arrive home.
But in our world, we understood our parent's strictness. We knew it was filled with love. We were men (as boys). We became men by it. And well, our breed of men could handle it.
No bandages too!
Hahaha, you snuck out to play that ball, so how can you tell your parents that you got injured. You would normally get injured from playing bare-foot on tarred road and there is no doubt that you will hide your injury from your parents, to figure 'recovery' out yourself; which never happens!
You try to pound the wound with hot-water in secrecy, but unlike your parents would (without mercy), you are so tame and casual with that hot rag. Then, you let it be and the flies eat it up and expand the gash cos you simply can't afford to bandage it or show sign of your injury before your parents. After weeks of 'your wound expanding', you are now in visible agony; your parents find out and they give you the hot-water therapy (plus 'the rod'). Hahaha, no worries, your 'hot beating' gets integrated into that hot-water therapy (one serving) as they pound your open wound and you. When you are done, you will certainly know you got a beating.
Many times, these injuries that expand, expand because we still play football with it and re-injure it. So, when you hear "injury upon injury", it exists!
Nothing stops us. I am telling you nothing!!! We grow in self-sacrifice, self-belief, self-confidence etc and evolve in humans virtues, substance etc even in the midst of play. Some serious business!
This means that as a boy, when it comes even to sports, i could take on adults. My decision-making was split-seconds sharp, agility and all was sharp but more importantly, grit and grind was default. We would bang heads and deal with the injuries later.
We knew of dirt, it wasn't foreign. Sweat was nothing, blood was nothing,, bump was nothing, contact was nothing, we know nothing of ouch, "a goal" was everything and we were just boys but 'boys on fire' and 'boys on fire' equals 'men'. Well, you will certainly be reminded the men inside us, when we hugged and bumped after a goal; you will feel in pain in your ribs as it cracks a bit inside of that brisk hug.
Today, boys would get an ankle sprain and call money or seek the crutches. We played on one leg even as boys. Injuries were nothing. The play would fix it.
I never played basketball, not even once till i grew much older
But when i began to play it and the same tenets the guarded my footballing guarded my basketballing. You simply can't score on me. I was very skinny when i started but i am sorry, i was dead strong. I couldn't lift weights or complete do 5-push-ups but in 'play' i was strong, for 'that extra two-step' i would take, that extra hustle was my thing.
Do you know where we played our table tennis then? On slim benches! We figured it out. No gimmicks. No 'for show off' or 'doing these stunts to garner social clout'; just us wanting to win at something.
Sports represented 'breakthrough' in real life, each play. We have kept losing in real life so much, that we just wanted to win something (or feel like winning) and note, there was no trophy. Just us boys, wanting to win at something.
How about this silly video of me?
Your Boy Terry