Did You Win?


I don’t like this question.

Right off the bat I’m stating that I love competition.  I think we all have a healthy built-in desire to strive for the best, to go faster, to create more beauty, to do something better than it was done the day before.  We compete against others and we compete against ourselves.  We advance.

But let me shift gears here.  More than competition, I love communication.  So I’m going to share another nagging thing that disturbs me.   (I sure have a lot of pet peeves!)

There’s a question that gets asked over and over again, and it’s got a 50% chance of ending in a let down.  And unless the responder is determined to carry on the conversation, the question has a 100% chance of shutting down the dialogue.  “Did you win?”

So a child goes to practice all week long, gets very excited to put on his little uniform, works hard for an hour trying to remember all the rules and how to handle the ball just right, hears the cheers from the bleachers, gets the butterflies in the stomach – maybe even a skinned knee… and the team loses by one point.  And here comes the question.  Did you win?

I took up running in my 30s, and set out to run a marathon at the age of 39.  I was thrilled I could run a mile, let alone 26.2.  It was years of work… and hours on the big day.  I loved the place I earned that day because it was so easy to remember.  888th.  Most common question?  Did you win?  That’s comically frustrating.

What was the best part of your game?  What was the score?  What position do you play?  Do you have some goals for the next event?  What do you love about your sport?

Here’s a sporting challenge.  Come up with some great questions for the little competitors in your life.


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