Friday, 11 October 2019

The Consolation Prize

Last Saturday, Norwich City took - to use the vernacular - one hell of a beating. About ten minutes from the end, however, they scored a consolation goal. As second-born is currently keen as mustard to expand his football-related vocabulary, he asked what ‘consolation’ meant. A friend explained, you know when you don’t win but someone gives you a prize anyway… I had to stop him right there. That’s second place mate. That’s runner-up. That’s on the podium and in the prizes.

The idea that not winning outright is not winning is flat-out toxic. You see the same thing at the end of any football cup final when the runners-up receive their medals. Those chaps are not happy bunnies. Watch how many take off their medal rather than wear it for another second. They’d rather carry it all screwed up in their sweaty palm than make the zero effort required to wear it to the dressing room.

Sure, they’ve had a gruelling day, and sure, there’s still room to do better next time, but placing second isn’t losing! Losing isn't even getting knocked out in the first round; losing is not getting up for more.

After not winning the other week’s poetry competition on account of being a numpty, I didn’t quit. I dusted myself down and made nice with the promoter. I didn’t complain, and I certainly didn’t ask for a prize, and yet here we are: my ‘consolation prize’ of a couple of paperbacks arrived today - a treat better than I deserved, better than I was expecting, and way better than many things I have acumulated as a so-called ‘winner’.

A consolation goal makes no never mind to the result. A consolation prize that is a prize, is a prize, full stop. It’s all in the mindset.

1 comment:

  1. So glad to see you've got your blogging mojo back... I'm enjoying reading your updates again... especially this one!!!