Hardship creates Excellence






PHOTO PROMPT © Kent Bonham

“Good job,” the foreman congratulated us, “Fit to produce the next England World cup legends.” I gazed at the all-weather pitch in its perfect rectangle with its spirit level flat surface. Climbing in my car, I wondered how I was going to manoeuvre through the ranks of other cars crowding the street and then I thought about the legends of 66. They honed their skills controlling the uneven bounce, dribbling up hill, judging the unreliable rebound from balls slammed into bins and lampposts. Hardship has always been the mother of invention and creativity. Maybe we’re missing the point somewhere.

Written for Friday Fictioneers – a 100 words story based on a photo prompt. Hosted by Rochelle. Read the other entries here.

38 thoughts on “Hardship creates Excellence

    • I think in our desperate desire to help people achieve, we sometimes remove some of the necessary ingredients. After all The Beatles had to do their apprenticeship in the Cavern and Hamburg, these days people go on talent shows and have a number one a week later

      Liked by 1 person

    • You’re right. What happens when someone experiences an uneven bounce for the first time? They don’t know how to deal with it, it’s wrong to eliminate them from young lives, experience has no substitute


    • Thanks Nan. It was all about if you take away the hard bits, albeit with good intentions, the grown person will cope less well in the future. I used football but it could be anything in life. Pop stars don’t seem to have to slog away in pubs and clubs learning their trade anymore.


    • I just feel if you remove the uneven bounce, the fight to keep it under control when you need that skill later on in life it won’t be there. It’s funny you should reference Scottish footballers, there is a dearth of world class ones at the moment and a lot of the best footballers come from poorer nations, from places where they don’t have state of the art facilities

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Rochelle, that phrase was in my mind while writing this along with the memory of playing in the street, getting scolded by people when the ball went in their garden or smashed a window. 🙂


  1. Great insight and story. In these cases it’s up to the coach to provide the hardship and ‘what-ifs’. Some do it well, others don’t, and that still makes a difference.
    Your story reminds me of a task I had to do for an online course about academic writing. It was writing a review about a chapter of one of these ‘talent’ books that claim that everyone can achieve greatness. I have the review on my blog, if you’re interested: https://gahlearner.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/1coyledraftreview.pdf, and the rest of the assignments: https://wordpress.com/edit/jetpack-portfolio/gahlearner.wordpress.com/15


  2. Loved the voice in this. I could just see the car curving his way up the street adopting those football moves, not that it necessarily did.
    There are lots of things come too easy and aren’t appreciated, and yet others still struggle – things are out of kilter.


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