#9

“I think the most important thing of all for any team is a winning attitude. The coaches must have it. The players must have it. The student body must have it. If you have dedicated players who believe in themselves, you don’t need a lot of talent.” -Bear Bryant

Two old ball coaches were sitting in a bar talking a great deal of shit. Mostly they were making fun of each other’s beers, Lite for one, snooty oak barrel nectar for the other. All the trash talking was in good nature and neither ever took anything personally. Somewhere after the third or fourth beer, the conversation changed.

“Why don’t we try each others’ beer? The next round, you go Lite and I’ll go snooty,” said the more experienced of the two coaches.

“How come?” asked the older but more inexperienced coach.

“Well, I think it’s good to have a different perspective. Figuring out what we’re all about is the way to get better.”

“That’s the kind of thinking that allows you to hang out with me,” said the snooty beer drinking and less experienced coach. “I’ll buy.”

“And that’s why I keep you around.”

The beers came and each tasted their new brew with a cautious hesitation. The beers were different but inviting. Both were cold, the Lite beer was crisp and the snooty beer was sweet but the new beers were good for both.

“I heard the Dali Llama said it doesn’t matter what you drink since it all comes out the same way,” said the original snooty beer drinking coach.

“My kind of conduit to the cosmos,” said the other coach.

The funny thing about these two was that they could not be more alike in their different approaches to life. Practical, theoretical, wide open, seriously reserved, a fast-moving storm, a brooding grudge carrying addict…

Yet, with all of that, they understood a few things in the same way.

Coaches prepare players to find success.

Players play.

The games are about learning how to succeed, not winning or losing.

Parents can be a little much.

About the time that the beers were running low a man and his wife walked into the bar. They started walking towards the two old ball coaches and the tension for the original snooty beer drinking coach rose as these parents were a little too much for him.

“Would you?” asked the original Lite beer drinking coach.

“I’d rather drink Budweiser.”

Enough said.