Holy Faith gives us an unshakable confidence in the inherent goodness of life and of the universe.
The Spirit of the Olympics gives us an unshakeable confidence in the inherent fairness of a level playing field. Many feel that the achievement of Holy Faith is an arduous journey. We have our fears and other human weaknesses to overcome along the way.
So it is with the Spirit of the Olympics. We have greed and overreaching ambitions to overcome. Victory in Holy Faith and victory in the Olympics are both the result of making the right choices. Choose faith in your heart. Choose fairness on the field. Those athletes who choose both are the real winners in any Olympiad.
And then there is Garry being Garry: Every Olympics has its pantheon of dominate performers, anyone of whom could at the very least cause a traffic jam by walking down a street in their home town. Ok, if you are an Olympian Kayaker you might have to wear your Gold Medal around your neck to get that kind of attention. Just sayin’. I mean, how many of you remember the names of the top Curlers from the last Winter Olympics. Let’s face it, some Olympic events are just more popular than others. For the record, my favorite forgettable Olympic event is Rhythmic Gymnastics. Mesmerizing! My Living a Dream partner Dave won’t admit it, but I think he was keen on Synchronized Swimming. Heart be still!
So here’s my personal pantheon from Rio 2016. If you can’t match the sport with the athlete, googol ’em up. I’m a blogger, not an a beat reporter. No offense. Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps, Anna van der Breggen, Aly Raisman, Summer Cook & Anna Botha.
S U B J E C T I V E? You bet!
By now you know that in addition to the list above, Dave and I cheered for all 21 ALTIS trained Olympians as well. But the truth is, all of the above barely scratches the surface of the athletes and coaches who enriched our lives, some long before Rio became the focal point of our dream.
John Godina from a previous Living a Dream post: We got a whole lot of athletes here (ALTIS) that are never going to the Olympics, but they’re welcome to come and try to improve themselves. ‘Let’s get some personal bests, let’s see how good we can ultimately be.’
After much soul searching and ego bending and, for lack of a better term, writer’s block, I’ve decided to dedicate this blog post to Chad Stoermer. I call Chad Renaissance Man because he is an athlete, an artist, a soldier and a profound thinker rolled into one. But what makes him special to me is his unbridled enthusiasm for life in general and the joy he brings to the people around him.
About the paining
Chad: I wanted it (the Painting) to say, “This is our Olympics.”
I picked a pole vauler because Steve (Lewis) is a Pole Vaulter, I’m a Pole Vaulters, we all love Olympic level pole vaulting, so this is our Olympics.
Chad’s Inscription on the back of the painting: “It’s been a privilege training with you and Dave in our pursuit to the 2016 Olympics.”
Dan Pfaff as quoted by Chad: Who you are is more important than how good you can be.
Ode to Chad
This was our Olympics
Dave’s and Chad’s and mine
and Steve’s and on and on
Through ALTIS and beyond
Borders and boundaries and barriers
fiercely guarding the un-promised land
And yet we share this noble bond
We all bore witness to the deluge of dreams
that rallied to a single cry
‘Let me see how great I can be’
But as satisfying as the painting is, getting to know, however briefly, the spirit of the artist was the greater gift.
Making it happen. Renaissance man, Chad Stoermer along with Dream bloggers Dave and Garry, and out of the goodness of her heart, Marge. (All photos of Chad compliments of Maverick Coffee.com)