The Dumbest Thing I Ever Did
When I was in the 6th grade, I lived in Klamath Falls, Oregon. My Dad was in the Air Force, and the government stationed us at a tiny base I’m sure no longer exists. As a military family, we moved a lot. That meant that I was always the new kid in school. Falcon Heights Elementary School was my 6th school in 6 years. You might think it would be tough on a kid to move that much, but I never really had any trouble fitting in or making new friends.
I was pretty good at football, basketball, and baseball, so my initial strategy was always to hang around the field or the court during recess. Once I got into a game and showed them I could play, finding a few cool guys to hang around with was easy.
Sent From Heaven
My new 6th grade school experience was a little different.
I still managed to find some buddies, but I had reached an age where I was beginning to notice how pretty some of the girls were.
One girl, in particular, a 5th grader named Linda Brown, seemed like she was dropped onto this earth by angels. She was by far the prettiest girl in school. Her father owned the local car dealership, and she lived in a huge mansion on the top of a hill (really…she did).
I tried everything to catch her eye, but she never gave me the time of day. The school was pretty small, but I don’t think she even knew my name.
During the first few months of the school year, I noticed her spending time talking to a kid with long wavy blonde hair and a cool denim jacket with lots of hip looking logo patches on it. Going into the Christmas break, I devised a plan to win Linda Brown over.
Figuring that was the kind of guy she liked, I grew my hair out (straight and thin — no waves) and asked for a denim jacket for Christmas.
My parents got me one from Sears, but with no logo patches it didn’t look as cool as I wanted. I dug through some stuff in my dad’s dresser and found 2 military insignia patches. In my own closet, I found a patch shaped like a bowling pin that said “I beat my coach”. It was leftover from our previous base when I had taken lessons and our family was in a league at the base bowling alley.
I begged my mom to sew the patches onto my jacket, which she reluctantly did, after asking, “Why would you want to ruin a good jacket by pasting these ugly patches all over it?”
By the time the Christmas break ended, it was getting real cold. I wanted to wear my new denim jacket to school to impress Linda, but on the first day back, my mom stopped me in my tracks as I was walking out the door and declared, “Young man, it is too cold for you to wear that thin denim jacket to school. You need to put this on.” She held out a military style parka with a hood surrounded in fake fur that itched your face and moistened when you let out a breath.
It was certainly warm and functional…
But definitely not cool.
After walking to school for a couple days in my dorky parka, I came up with another great idea.
I started smuggling the denim jacket out of the house under the parka and when I was out of sight, I would stash the nerdy heavy coat behind a bush and head off to school in only my patch-laden chick magnet.
Turns out the denim jacket was no more impressive than my new Tom Petty hairdo. Linda Brown still never looked my way.
After a few weeks the teachers at the school announced a Valentine’s weekend dance to be held in the school gym. I was hell bent on taking Linda Brown to that dance. Out of ideas to make her notice me, I launched my most desperate plan.
Plan B–Epic Fail
The next chance I got, I would fight the biggest dude in the school.
If I could whip him in front of the entire student bodyl, Linda would think I was “The Man”.
Ironically, the school Goliath was a big red headed kid named David. He was gruff and always kind of mean to everyone, so he’s the guy I picked for my showcase butt whoopin’.
A few days later, as fate would have it, David and I were walking through the same door out to the playground with Linda only a few feet away. We bumped into each other and big David kind of threw his shoulder into me, causing me to ram against the door jam.
I seized my opportunity.
I shoved the big galoot in the chest and said, “Watch it man! I’m gonna kick your butt!”
Someone yelled, “Fight!” And it was on!
As nearly every person in the school formed a ring around us in the courtyard, we both put up our dukes. I was wearing gloves and my cool denim jacket. I danced around him like Muhammed Ali, peppering him with jabs to the nose. Every swing he took came up short, and I just kept landing blows to his big orange pumpkin head.
After a few minutes I began to realize that every time he tried to swing with his right, his arm looked kinda gimpy. Eventually, he stopped using it altogether and only swung with his left. My last blow caused a river of blood from his nose, at which time Linda Brown came storming into the ring.
I dropped my hands as she skidded right between us and shouted, “Stop it you idiot! Can’t you see he’s handicapped?!” It was the first time I had ever her voice.
At that moment I realized something I had never noticed before.
Big Red David’s right arm and hand were underdeveloped. Apparently it was the result of a palsy caused from trauma at birth. Self conscious about his deformity, he had always done a masterful job of disguising it by keeping it in his pocket or hiding it under a book. His course personality had probably been a defense mechanism.
I never got into another fight for the rest of my life.
To this day, that was the dumbest thing I have ever done, and as I write this article 39 years later, I still feel terrible about it. I wish I could find big David and apologize.
I learned a lesson that day I’ll never forget.
If your primary motivation is to impress someone else, you are destined for failure. Real achievement and acceptance has to come from within. It’s who you TRULY are, and not the way others perceive you that matters the most.
The spring high school baseball season has ended and the summer travel ball and showcase circuit is revving up. Many of you will be out there trying to show off your abilities with the hope of catching the eye of some college recruiter or pro scout. You’ll be playing with half your thoughts in the stands, wondering who might be watching and what they might be thinking.
I’d like to offer you a little advice.
Immerse yourself in every game with the singular focus of doing everything you can to help your team win. Play your heart out with zeal and passion, not to impress the Linda Brown scouts in the stands, but with the aim of laying your head on your pillow every night knowing you gave your all.
More importantly, train hard and build your ability.
Attack every practice and training session with the fervor of a rabid wolf.
When show time comes, you’ll find peace and confidence in knowing you have done everything in your power to be the very best you can be.
And when they see you play…trust me…they’ll notice.
And the pretty girl will ask YOU to the dance.
If you want to build your ability safely and smartly, you need to come to one of our Rocket Launchers Training Camps. We’ll rock your world with a cutting edge training system that will have you throwing laser guided missiles.
You’ll dominate games like never before.
A denim jacket with a bunch of cheesy patches won’t turn their heads.
90+ mph on the paint will.
Go to our main page by clicking here and watch the short video to find out more about this incredible value. At the end of the clip, you’ll discover how to save 50% off the normal price of our training.
“If you build it (your ability) they will come.”
Build it, man! Build it!
Randy Sullivan, MPT
CEO, The ARMory Power Pitching Academy
P.S. Have you heard about the allstar cast we have set for our Rocket Science Live Presentation on Jun 8th? Ron Wolforth, Kyle Boddy, Chris Holt, Jim Wagner, Flint Wallace, and Me in a roundtable discussion called Arm Care Summit: Decel is Ground Zero.
It will be moderated by Jay Welsh, former producer for The Golf Channel
Check out this short informational video (1min 36 sec) by clicking here.