There is a saying. I’m sure there is. I can’t think of it right now, but I know this example illustrates it perfectly. So, said saying having not been stated, I shall advance awkwardly into my illustrious example of a lesson we have yet to specify.
Softball. That’s what this is about. Though, not entirely because, as we have decided, there is a deeper lesson to be learned. Nevertheless, this is a story that must be told.
The beginning of the season lacked the pizzazz the team wished for. The first, say, five games passed, and no success on the field was seen. Statistically, there was hope. If they started winning, they could still make it to playoffs.
They didn’t, though. Be it lack of determination, inclination, or stimulation, the only consistent part of their game was the outcome. For twenty five games, that outcome was unfavorable.
And then, by some stroke of fate, in an unlikely second match of a double header against the already victorious Los Medanos Mustangs, things changed. One game changed it all.
The exuberant team carried their new found confidence with them into subsequent games. Six of the next eight were won. They were doing well. Really well in contrast to earlier records. This was playoff material. “We are finally playing how we’re capable of playing,” Coach Stephanie Reynolds remarked proudly.
But there were only two games left, both against the undefeated conference champions, Solano College. No way could a seven win team beat an all win team, and even then there wouldn’t be enough to give them a spot in the playoffs. Alas, seven wins, and the season was over.
What, you may ask yourself, can I learn from this story? The lesson lies in the subtle truth found in Coach Reynolds statement. They were capable of winning all along. Why they didn’t is up for debate, but for whatever reason, they settled for something below what they were capable of. They spent months not living up to their potential, and the late start cost them.
While writing, I’ve realized that my example does not prove the saying I had in mind, it disproves it. The saying is this: Better late than never. The truth is much more useful:
Late may be better than never, but it certainly isn’t better than early.