A few years ago, I, for the first time, read a column by Rick Reilly. It was my first issue of Sports Illustrated, which I had gotten as a Christmas present, and the article was about the Steelers victory in the Super Bowl that year.
The article was, to say the least, different.
It wasn't about stats and figures from the game. It wasn't even really about the game. It was about one of the men behind it: Steelers coach Bill Cowher.
The article taught me that sports was about more than the game. It was about life. And every week following Reilly continued to impress that point on his readers, myself included, through his astounding articles.
I remember times I laughed hysterically, times I almost cried, and times when it was better to remain silent. The articles were amazing. The feelings they evoked were amazing.
And that is what brings me to my response to today's question.
Life is a sport. You could think of it as a game of baseball, football, a hot dog eating contest, whatever. It has its ups and downs. There are fruitful victories and crushing defeats. And, most importantly, no matter what, we keep on playing. For the love of the game. For the love of life.
Therefore, I say anything you WANT can be a sport. It doesn't have to be competitive. It doesn't have to include a ball. It doesn't have to have a winner and a loser.
If it did, then life would be a whole lot less complicated and a whole lot more cut throat. But it doesn't. So sport doesn't. As long as there is love for the "game," whatever that game may be, then it is a sport.
Reilly taught me a lot through his work at SI. He taught me how to live, how to dream, and how to make the most of every day of my life.
Most of all, he taught me the words I will live by the rest of my life.
"I don't write about sports," he said. "I write about people who happen to be in sports."
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