…Well now it’s May of 2009, and the Mets club of June 2006 seems like a lifetime ago. The Steamroller team that was eating up everything in it’s path, suddenly began to lose it’s engine parts almost as quickly as the daylight minutes disappear as the days of summer wane. Something as simple as a Taxi-Cab accident began a slide into an injury abyss from which there appears no escape. Is there an answer to breakdown, a prevention to injury, logic tells me no. Yet history tells maybe there is. Maybe it’s something so simple we’re blind to it. Why is it, injuries always come when least expected ? Because, oddly enough I think we ask for them.
….I know in my own life, every sport related injury came because I forgot for a moment just how human I was. I took a talent past it’s capability and paid a physical price. I always did that. I can think of countless numbers of Sports figures who did the same things. Afterall isn’t the true characteristic of every born athelete is that ability to ever expand their playing capabilities. Isn’t that included in the Spirit of Competition. Why is it we all know “you never intentionally run into a wall” yet, watch outfielders practice doing it “just in case” they need to someday. This sounds alot like practicing “Russian Roulette”, just in case we want to play it someday…..
…..So where in my life was the mentor with this answer, Casey of course. Casey must have discussed it at sometime, he talked about everything, why can’t I place it now. I can see him standing there with his arms moving in all directions and cocking his head to stress an issue. Did he intentionally hide it beneath something else ? The more I consider those words I heard now some 50 years later I realize indeed he often said it. “playing within Yourself”, meant simply that. Casey stressed knowing not just your strengths but maybe even more so “your limitations”. It’s sounds so easy, could it possibly be the answer, that somehow just skips us by. The secret isn’t in your strength, that the secret lies within your weakness. It’s as much the ‘id” as anything else. When we forget how human we are, we are truely human and our humanity will remind us very quickly. Casey told us about small players playing big and Big players playing small. Is that the answer ? That by knowing and understanding our limitations we expand the things we can and cannot do ?
….Life is so unfair, here it is all these years later and now I need what is no longer possible to have. Casey isn’t around and his words now are just echos from my past. Those things I was so sure I understood now I realize I never knew at all. Well, I hope this reaches Omar, I know Casey had to leave me the answer, but I just can’t seem to find it. Maybe he can. I’ll just do the intelligent thing and pass the issue on to a Higher Power, afterall didn’t I say Casey was stressing understanding our own limitations…..