Want to be a Better Athlete? Watch Your Local Special Olympics

Be Happy To Be Here

happy to be here

When a marathon kicks off and the announcer inevitably asks the crowd to cheer, there’s usually a half-hearted “woo” from a few psyched up racers. The rest of us are too busy checking our watches, sucking in gel packets and double-checking our shoelaces to take part. We are collectively too cool for school.

But not at the Special Olympics. Arms raised and grins blazing, you’d think the game’s opening ceremonies were the pinnacle of these athletes’ lives. And when the announcer says cheer, THEY CHEER, DAMNIT.

And why shouldn’t that moment at the start line be the happiest moment of our lives? We take getting to the start line for granted. We are healthy enough to run. We live in a place where we can stride out in short shorts without fear of censure. We have such an abundance of available calories in our nation that we have to find a way to burn them off. We can be grateful that it’s a beautiful day and somehow—through some incredible stroke luck—our great great great grandparents met and fell in love and started the slow and improbable march towards our eventual lives.

If that’s not worth cheering for, I don’t know what is. From now on, I will woo when it’s time to woo.