I’m too competitive. It’s something I have come to accept, and unfortunately this trait of mine is rubbing off on my children. Here’s my story… This weekend, my three children challenged me to a soccer game. We set up two goals in the backyard and started playing. The first one to five goals would be declared the winner and grand champions of the soccer universe.
My oldest son, Bob the Builder, is seven. He is ultra competitive, so I knew this would be a battle. If he loses, he starts crying. Then again, when I lose, I cry too. He’s kind of like his father that way.
Quickly, I busted out to a two to nothing lead. When I play, I play for keeps. YOU KNOW IT! No little crew of pip squeaks are going to keep me down. Bob recognized that he had to change his strategy, or this game would be a rout. He huddled up with The Flower Child, my five year old daughter, and Ivan the Terrible, my three year old son.
Bob’s plan was devious and brilliant. Immediately after the huddle broke, The Flower Child sprinted right at me. She then jumped up and gave me a big bear hug. I put her down because Bob the Builder was coming to shoot on goal, but The Flower Child clung to my leg leaving me completely immobile. Bobo scored!
The next time down, Bob sent The Flower Child and Ivan the Terrible to grab my legs. Bob scored again. The game was tied 2 – 2.
The rest of the game involved me dodging the munchkins, while trying to score goals and keep Bob from scoring. When the score was tied four to four, things got intense. As The Flower Child and Ivan the Terrible chased me, I would snatch them before they could cling to my legs, and I would toss them out of the way. They didn’t get discouraged at all, and Ivan started diving at my ankles. I tripped eluding Ivan’s attack, and then The Flower Child jumped on my back as I was trying to get back up. Bob saw his window of opportunity and scored the winning goal.
Bob celebrated the victory by joining his brother and sister. They all jumped on me repeatedly as I rolled around in the grass crying.
How about you? Are you competitive? Do you play fair, or do you look for that edge, even if you’re cheating?