There are many things to like about living in Britain. The history, scenery, diversity and a largely benign environment are wonderful as are many other things.
But the thing that seems to irritate me the most is the depressing attitude towards achievement. This tweet sums it all up:
Oh, that would be amazing RT @colm_ryan: Or the gold medal note could be “Well done you, but it’s not like you cured cancer or something”.
Not everybody is interested in being a cancer researcher. Not everyone is a towering intellect, capable of curing cancer (something I note that neither Richard Wiseman or Colm Ryan have done either.)
And don’t get me wrong, I’m no fan of the Olympics – it’s a massive corporatist money-grabbing operation and I wish London hadn’t won the 2012 Olympics. As far as I can see, it looks like there is certainly the appearance of massive opportunities for fleecing attendees, sponsors, governments and probably the athletes as well.
But given that there is a forum for people who are motivated by their sports to compete and achieve things, the one thing that I cannot abide is the constant shitting on their achievements, or indeed anyone else’s achievements.
Just because you have a set of interests and priorities does not give you any right to sit in judgement of someone else’s. As long as someone is not harming someone else, I really don’t care what gives them a buzz, and if they do exceptionally well at it, well, good for them.
I might not give a shit about how fast you can run 100 metres, but if you can run it faster than anyone else on the planet, well, good for you! Well done for trying to be the best at something, even if it’s not going to cure cancer.
And the same argument applies to any other kind of achievement: legally made lots of money? Good for you! Won a crossword competition? Aces! Won the Champions League? Great!
There’s nothing wrong with someone else achieving, other than it may make you look at your own lack thereof. And if you don’t like what you see, don’t blame people who get off their arses. They don’t do it to make you look worthless, you do that all by yourself.
Previously published on Obo’s blog.