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NY: On Sports and Fitness



19

Serious games. I have the highest respects for sportsmen. They are the ones who know how to live this petty life! Not only because they discovered the secret that life is a game--that all too -often said phrase nowise always misunderstood--but because they separate themselves from the rest by also knowing that such games must be played seriously. But that doesn't preclude games from being fun--on the contrary. Games become more entertaining for the player and spectator when they are played to heart: nothing is more delightful than seeing grown men playing with balls like their lives depended on it!

Competition does not mean the will to annihilate or embarrass or overpower the other player; it means summoning from yourself all that strength and focus to play the game as it should be played. The other competitor is just a mirror or a wall or a shadow: it could be any other--imagined or real. But what matters is whether or not you can overcome yourself and all your weaknesses not only to "give it your all" but more importantly to lose yourself in the game. The desire to win passes through losing yourself to the game. It will always be you competing with yourself and throwing yourself in an abandon to the game. That you shall win or lose matters not: games are games and we all die anyway.


20

Ethics. Camus said that you will learn everything you need to know about ethics by playing football. I guess it's because all you do in that game is run around all the time without being able to use your hands. Like Kant--"who has clean hands because he has no hands."


21

Professional sports. Oxymoron at first glance (but that precisely is what an oxymoron is!) But when you come to think of it it simply means men who are paid to play games. Then there is no better job in the world. It is fine that some exceptional sportsmen earn so much money that they can buy small countries. That belongs to the possibility that a game offer: because you can only get better and there will be a clear-cut way of determining who is "best." And in the end it will be what it has always been--the best things for the best and the most for the few and the rare. I'd prefer this rather than the politician who makes a killing without passing any law. Such a man is the professional lie.


22

All that the God does is play games. Besides, what else would you be doing if you had an eternity to waste?


23

Eternal roundness. Why are ball sports the best sports? Because it guarantees fairness as it guarantees randomness. The science of ball sports: to overcome fairness by mastering randomness. And since randomness can never be mastered we can play on till forever. Neat!


24

The advent of video games has produced not lean players but fat men and obese children.


25

On gyms. One word why it has become fashionable to go to the gym: Vanity. Only those recovering from strokes and those who are inevitably going to have a stroke should go to the gym. What a sight that would be!--like going to the hospital instead of going to a bar.


26

Why I am fat. I'm fat because I am happy. Thin happy men do not look happy.



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