Wednesday, January 27, 2016
(This piece inspired by my friend, Sam, and his disdain for people spilling "hate-er-ade" all over his boy, Tom Brady.)
Just days after these two went at in their fifth AFC Championship game, my friends are all aflame in the social media-verse with the "I hate #18; I hate #12" folderol.
The truth is the greatness of each is forever tied to the other. And yes, they're both truly great and will both be touted and esteemed way beyond their time.
Nearly every historic figure we know by name, had an adversary--someone to fight against.
We wouldn't know the Hatfields without the _________ (you said McCoys, right?)
There was Larry Bird and ____________ (you said Magic Johnson).
There was Staubach vs _____________ (Bradshaw. You're getting good at this).
Ali and _________ (Frazier).
Chris Everett and ___________ (Martina Navratilova).
Nadal and _________ (Federer.)
Washington vs the British. Reagan vs communism. Palmer vs Nicklaus, Coke vs Pepsi, Gates vs Jobs, Ford vs GM. You get the idea.
If you're a Brady/Manning fan you have to be thankful for the other guy! Imagine for the last thirteen or so years if there was just ONE of these phenoms in the AFC: BORING!
Every great person needs other great people to bring out their best. Left to just ourselves and our goals, apart from an opponent, we don't do so hot.
This is true of individuals, companies and countries. In terms of the latter, consider that when we had a common enemy (USSR), we appeared less divisive as a country. Since the USSR disbanded, one could argue that America's enemy is itself, other Americans.
When did America most recently rally? During the recession. It was US vs recession and it brought out our best. Automobile companies that were arguably a little complacent, got serious, knuckled down, got innovative, paid off government loans and got stronger than before. Every segment of the public and private sector have been working on how to do it better and more efficiently.
Why? Because we had to. We had an adversary called the recession.
When it comes to humans, we're at our best when there's an adversary, So if you love Tom Brady, then thank God for Peyton Manning. And if you love Peyton Manning, then thank God for Tom Brady.
Manning and Brady are friends, rivals and men who know that they've kept each other on their toes all these years. I cannot fathom the inordinate amount of respect they have for each other.
So, don't be hatin'. Adversaries and adversity bring out our best.
Thank you, Peyton.
Thank you, Tom.