I love sports movies (except that Invictus was a bit disappointing). Mostly I enjoy them because the endings are usually uplifting, I appreciate the mental and physical demands of competition and teams are always ripe for dynamic relationships. I will confess that my favorite sports movie is The Replacements. I admit that as far as cinematic quality, it was not (nor should it have been) Oscar-bound. I will also note that I love the movie most for the supporting characters and making fun of Keanu Reeves' lines. I still find it hilarious every time I watch it.
But that is the exception. Other sports movies carry a bit more weight - who doesn't love Rudy, Seabiscuit, Remember the Titans, or The Legend of Bagger Vance? I also enjoyed Lagaan (a film set in India about cricket). Like I said, Invictus was a bit of a disappointment. It had much more potential than it was allowed - mostly because the film couldn't decide if it wanted to be biographical about Nelson Mandela (which is enough to cover in and of itself), wanted to look at the integration of his security force, integration of the rugby team or the nation's move to support the rugby team as a step towards further progress.
And every good sports film has at least one "rah-rah" point - the coach and the team, the team leader and the team, the love interest and the team leader, parent and child, etc. Nowadays, these encouraging words can be preserved for all times through email and this is what I share today. My husband is the captain of an ultimate Frisbee team and sends out weekly emails to motivate the group to show up and give 110%. I find them of a quality worth sharing on such an esteemed site as this - to inspire other leaders and to support those of us who find ourselves more appropriately fitted in The Replacements than in Rudy.
(For clarification, their team name is Hot Mustard. Don't ask.)
So we had one of our better turn outs last week. I appreciate the level of effort we gave last week. I look forward to seeing everyone out on a rain free evening. If you do have an excuse for why you can't make it, here's the list that I'll accept without ridicule:
1. You are in full body traction after a trying a triple toe loop from your couch inspired by watching the pairs figure skating (Who am I kidding? I would definitely make fun of you for that)
2. You've had a date scheduled with a super model for the last 6 months
3. Olympic curling is on and you don't own a TV recorder
4. You got your significant a Dyson vacuum cleaner for Valentine's day because the infomercial "sucked" you in and the bruises still haven't healed. I really thought she would like it. Ugh!
Ok so I'm going to use guilt and peer pressure as a motivation tool to get you out to play. Don't be that guy (or girl, Lisa) to let your team down tonight by going to the bar and grabbing a fruity drink with an umbrella instead of enjoying the challenge and excitement of ultimate. It's just two hours. The feeling will come back to your extremities soon after you get back home. Would you rather tell people at work that you played ultimate in adverse conditions or watched season five reruns of American Idol for the fourth time? Would you rather have your house smell like air freshener and potpourri or mildew from wet clothes doused with the scent of victory? I'm just saying...
Close you eyes. Imagine the NBC theme to the Olympics playing softly in the background. You hear the faint sounds of a large crowd chanting something in the distance. As you get closer, you begin to hear the cheers of the crowd. Are they chanting USA? We're better at hockey, suck it hosers? Your mom? No! It's Hot Mustard! Hot Mustard! Hot Mustard! Why would a crowd chant for the last place team in an ultimate winter league? It's because everyone loves an underdog story. From Rudy to Hoosiers, people love it when the team that everyone has written off, rises to the occasion to bring down Goliath.
If you want to put your mark on history and be a part of this Disney-tear-jerking-one-for-the-gipper-I-love-cliches moment, come out the next two weeks for an epic ultimate team moment.
Good luck Hot Mustard!