Monday, 19 November 2012

We all need a win.

My friend had his second attempt at his driving test last week. I was a nervous wreck all day waiting to hear from him as to whether or not we’d be celebrating with pizza and TV that night, or drowning our sorrows with pizza and TV that night. Finally, the text came through: “so guess who won’t be getting a pink licence any time soon…” I sighed and shook my head. My friends asked what was wrong. I replied: “he really needed a win.”

There comes a time when we all need a win; a good old-fashioned victory, something we achieved in the face of adversity after what feels like an age of unrelenting disappointments and setbacks. It could be getting 71% on a piece of work after missing out on several job opportunities, getting a lead role in a play after being turned down by a love interest, or winning an Ultimate Frisbee tournament after having all your ideas shot down in group work. My friend needed to pass his driving test because he’d been unsuccessful in applying for jobs since summer, he’d been disappointed with the results of his countless play and musical auditions, he’d been watching all his friends doing brilliantly and had next to no good news to share. He needed that win.
The idea of the “win” is obviously something that has existed for centuries now, since King Harold was shot in the eye and was on the ground begging for a horse, since Pompeii was drowning in flames and since King Henry was chopping off his wives’ heads as his search for a son continued to leave him disappointed. And if there is anything history has taught us, it is that if we don’t get a win once in a while, we forfeit our crown, our cities will burn and heads will roll. Surely if we explained this logic to our peers and lecturers, we’d get a bit more slack and a few more Firsts.

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