Jack And The Keen Talk
I, like so many people, love inspirational stories. They make me smile, light sparks of ideas in my head and my heart sing with admiration. The other day my partner asked me whether he had told me about a young boy called Jack, and I just had to share it. So, if you are sitting comfortably I will begin.
Every year the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association for those not in the know) hold many tournaments nationwide and one of them at this time was the Inter County Cup Tournament obviously held in counties across the UK. In this one county was a tennis club with two of the most exceptional players for their age and top of their league table in England. When the organisers from the other clubs found this out they tried to get them banned as it wasn't fair on the other children as they would not get a look in. It was pointed out by their coach that surely it would inspire the other children to get better and after much wrangling and arguing it was agreed that they could play. Now, I would like to point out at this point, neither of these two were called Jack. As Jack was nowhere near the talent of these two boys, he was however from the same club and took many a thrashing on court by them, just like the other players in their club. However the difference being that when other children were told who they would be playing against, faces would drop, racket's dragged to court and the defeatist within would come bubbling to the top of them and a what is the point attitude would ensue. But not Jack he would become wonderfully elated. He would fly onto court at a chance to play them.
The day came of team selection for the tournament and apart from the two top players there was only Jack and A. N. Other child to choose from in their age group for the team, so the four of them made the team (cue one very happy Jack).
On the day of the tournament the two top boys both won their 1st game, but Jack and Co lost theirs. Now a wonderful thing happened rather than being growled and grimaced at for losing the two better players high fived and congratulated the other two telling them they had both been brilliant and it didn't matter if they lost or not they had done their best so a good team effort. Just hearing this put Jack on Cloud 9. Not only had he been put on the team but was also being made to feel an equal by the better players. This buoyed both lads so much that they went on to win all their other games. Now, the last game came along and it was doubles, so the coach paired the two best players together and the other two, but this was not how this little team worked and one of the better players stepped in and said that it was obvious they would win so would it not be a better idea that they split up and each team then had one top player, this agreed, once again both teams won and for the first time in Jack's life he received not just a Medal but a Medal with 1st on it. Well he ran round the court like a footballer who had one the World Cup, t-shirt on head whooping and a hollering as he ran round. When he was asked why he was so elated he said this may be the only time in my life that I get a medal like this and I am making the most of it. Then the conversation went on and it was finally asked Jack why do you get so hyped, even though you are not going to win, to play against X or Y? and then this little 8 year old boy came out with a line that I will keep with me forever and it was because just to get one point, just one makes me fly, just to prove to myself that I can do it.
Most of us faced with going against something and knowing the inevitable will be to fail to win will give up as, let's face it, what is the point? And this is what this story screamed at me, the point is to give it your best, to have a bloody good go, to give it your all, as, let's face it, if you never give it a go, never try you will never get that one point, that one point that may change your life. You will never attain your goal. We all should fail at something and instead of giving up use that to spring board us further towards our success. As the old saying goes:
Shoot for the moon, even if you miss you will land among the stars.
When I think of this story I always sit with my mental fingers crossed that in a few years I will hear or read a news heading about a man called Jack the winner of Wimbledon. For me he was the super star in that club.