Monday, November 16, 2015

Ronda Rousey Is Human, and So Am I

Ronda Rousey finally lost. I didn't want her to. I'd hopped on her bandwagon a long time ago, and I wanted to hang on tight as I rode it all the way to her retirement from MMA as the undefeated champion she repeatedly boasted she would be.

Yet, poor Ronda not only lost, she was dominated, even more than I secretly feared she might be, in every way from the opening bell. Holly Holm made this heretofore MMA goddess and self-proclaimed and media-touted "greatest fighter in the world" look like a hapless novice. And just as Ronda took some concussive blows in the Octagon last Saturday night, so did my faith in idols.

I've had an almost lifelong tendency to single out certain athletes, musicians, intellectuals, and so forth and regard and revere them as idols who not only can do no wrong but are superhuman in their transcendent talents and skills.

I don't know why I've done this. Maybe I've just wanted the human equivalent of that "shining city on the hill" to serve as my glittering inspiration to aim higher, or to at least let me vicariously experience the glorious success and greatness I could never hope to achieve for myself but that the little boy inside me continued to crave.

But I may have difficulty doing this after what happened in Australia and what has happened on other fronts, and maybe it's for the best that I stop placing people on towering pedestals and start respecting myself as much as I do anybody and everybody else. Maybe when I stop worshiping other people as gods, I'll also stop feeling so feeble and inferior by comparison that I lack any motivation to cultivate my own talents, hone my own skills, and fulfill my own dreams.

I still like and respect Ronda Rousey, and I hope that she gets a rematch with Holly Holm and maybe even wins it. But I doubt that I'll ever see her or anyone else again the way I've seen her and other previous and recent idols of mine, and I think that's probably a good thing.

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