Watching athletes running and paint drying

Watching athletes running and paint drying

Eric Wong

All sports are created equal, even cross-country

Athletes who practice by ridiculously long courses alone, who must struggle through challenges alone and who must push themselves to the next level alone find themselves without any support when the time for their meets come. Yet they utter no cry for attention as they continue their noble struggle for endurance and a better running form. I’m quite impressed that they continue, even though they know that what they do isn’t exactly riveting nor crowd-pleasing. 


Sadly, the last time I saw a cross-country meet was back in middle school at Kennedy, during volleyball practice.  Even then, there weren’t supporters cheering at the finish line.  Not much has changed since.  There still isn’t an expectation for supporters to attend cross-country meets. “Look, they ran off into the distance. Oh look now, the first few are trickling back to the finish line, gasping and panting!” Boring.

I’d have to agree that football is infinitely more tailored to drawing an audience.  Having armored high school males smash into each other and dive for an oddly-shaped ball is constant live-action entertainment. Then again, there probably is some finesse and persistence in running that exposes the beauty of the human psyche, but I haven’t picked up on it yet.  

Most of us can come to a general consensus as to the entertainment value of each sport.  However, correlating diminished entertainment value with worthlessness for sports is rather like playing the role of the demagogue.  

Everyone will take notice of these incensing lines, but then what? When the furor has died down, such claims to an inherent inequality between sports only leads to animosity. Just a few days ago, I heard people on the cross-country team mutter about the nonsensical comparison of sports on El Estoque.  

So I wanted to take the time to remind the discontented that every team is here to represent our school whether it be at an athletic meet or a game. 

Rest assured, cross-country: even if the only people to congratulate you at the finish line are your teammates and your coaches, we still know you exist as part of the MVHS community. After all, the letters “MVHS” emblazoned across your chest make you one of us and nothing less.