Four Magnificent Points

14 Nov

Last week I visited a nearby town called Melba to watch my daughter’s basketball game. Having arrived early, I watched as the girls warmed up before the game started. My daughter’s team is pretty good. But the Melba team was down-right impressive. They were tall girls. And they were strong. They threw powerful passes, none of which went over the intended recipient’s head or rolled between anyone’s legs. They never, ever dribbled the ball on their own foot. And they made their shots. Nearly all of them. I don’t know about the girls on my daughter’s team, but I was already feeling a bit intimidated by this imposing team of Melba.

Those feelings didn’t change much after the game started. My daughter’s team played well. But when the final buzzer sounded, the score reflected the vast difference between the ball-playing abilities of the two teams.

Despite the slaughter, my daughter’s coach was quick to line up her team to congratulate the Melba team on their win. Admirable sportsmanship, wouldn’t you say? And an opportunity for the girls’ true character to shine, despite scoring only four lousy points. Sometimes we are at our best when things are at their worst.

As the Melba team celebrated their victory, we were quietly informed that in actual fact, the Melba team was not in the same league as my daughter’s team. Nor were they one league above my daughter’s team. They were actually two whole leagues above my daughter’s team.

Things are not always what they may seem to be, are they?

Viewed in this light, I’m not sure any team or coach has ever been so proud of having scored four magnificent points. We, too, had a victory to celebrate.

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