Two people can look at one object and see it in totally different ways…
… sometimes in ways that seem contradicting… in ways in which we wonder how another ever possibly could have arrived at his or her perspective…
Enter high school baseball as today’s example…
Last month there was one Minnesota sectional championship game which was especially notable. The game featured Totino-Grace vs. Mounds View — the Eagles vs. the Mustangs.
What made this game remarkable was how it ended.
Mounds View pitcher Ty Koehn faced the final batter in Totino-Grace’s Jack Kocon. Ty struck out Jack to end the game.
With the final out, the Mustangs of Mounds View enthusiastically stormed the field, celebrating their well-earned coveted championship. They all spontaneously gathered near the pitching mound — that is, all except Ty Koehn.
Unlike the rest of his team, Ty instead rushed off the mound toward the batter’s box. He was there to console his opponent, Jack Kocon.
As reported by Minnesota site Bring Me The News, Ty said:
“We are very close friends. Knew him from all the way back when we were 13. We were on the same Little League team. It was tough when we went to separate schools, but we kept in touch.
I knew the game was going to keep going or it was going to end right there. I knew I had to say something. Our friendship is more important than just the silly outcome of a game. I had to make sure he knew that before we celebrated.”
Look at this teen… so aware of what’s most important… so aware that opposition doesn’t have to be vicious nor divisive. And yet two people… one object… seeing things in totally different ways…
Note the tweeted reaction of others… but especially noted, the reaction of adults…
“This makes me shake with rage the more I see it. As I said elsewhere, this offends me as a youth football coach who preaches killer instinct to my players. I would make a player who did this hold his championship ring as I blowtorch it and melt it, because he doesn’t deserve it.”
“This is absolutely embarrassing. You have 1 moment to celebrate with your teammates who busted their tails w/ you, and you’re going to console a friend who’s upset? Kid is about as soft as it gets. Winners win and embrace it. Take this garbage somewhere else.”
“Call me old and crotchety (it’s probably true), but I personally find this ridiculous. The pitcher should be celebrating with his teammates. He can call or text his friend later and take him out for “milk shakes” at some point this summer.”
Wow… killer instinct… garbage… soft… ridiculous…
After a show of unprecedented sportsmanship, adults attempt to explain why empathetic behavior is wrong.
Have we soured so much in picking our teams, embracing division, and need to win, that we can no longer see what is good and right and true?
… that we can no longer see what we have in common?
… and that empathy and compassion are good?
Maybe we, too, need the younger generation to remind us of what is good.