September 05, 2019

This past Sunday major media was rightfully applauding the post-confrontation of, yes; a tennis match. Grace, humility and character must be first cousins to “Shirley”, goodness and mercy.
As we watched the victor graciously, but not gratuitously, acknowledge the worth of the challenge, did you notice that they were both actually perspiring?
Obviously, this contest had not occurred in an air-conditioned room, on two impersonal blue screens, with only “impulse-to-digit involvement.”
How many laws are created by email, with not even one step being taken in shoes meant to walk a mile?
How many news bytes are generated by a computer programmed to select those that will draw the most viewers to the maximized advertising?
In our increasingly impersonal world, maybe the true value of sports (on the field) is contact.
No matter how competitive the contest, it is nearly impossible to distinguish your competitor’s sweat from your own.
If major media, social media, and legislators had to interact closely enough to sweat, make eye contact, and observe body language like the people who created our “still breathing” system of representative cooperation, maybe “tennis elbow” could translate to “tenable engagement.”

John Hawkins

Perry MO