Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Passion in Sport: You don't just play it you live it.

Last week I was moved by the anniversary of the Olympics; this had me thinking. Sports, bring people together; it unites teammates, fans, families, friends, communities and even countries. What sport does this more than any other, even more than the Olympics? Football, or more commonly know in America as Soccer.
Soccer is the most popular sport in the world according to Wikipedia. The FIFA 2010 World Cup South Africa broke records all over the world in TV and in online views.

You regularly see scenes of riots and other sorts of violence during games due to the intense passion people have for it and their teams. But you also see displays of joy and people crying because they cant hold back the the tears of happiness when their teams win.
2006; Me with my family, friends and others celebrating Italy's Victory!
I'm not putting in the picture of me crying.
Now this happens with every sport, but with soccer it's different, you see the same emotions expressed in every corner of the world. Where as other sports are usually celebrated within the nation it plays or even city. During the the last world cup in 2010 businesses let people take longer breaks and set up TV's in offices and in lobby's for the entire tournament, which lasts just over a month. Yes this even happened here in Canada. The last time Canada made the world cup, actually the only time, I wasn't even born. This brings me to question, why, why soccer? What is it about this game that drives people crazy? Where does the passion come from?

I think a lot of it has to do with tradition, the passion for the sport is a learned behavior. A child will learn to love a team or feel a certain way because the parent feels the same way. In many parts of the world, the passion for a team is like a religion for some people they live and breath it.

Now I wouldn't go this far obviously because I'm not sure what my passion is yet. But I can understand the love of the game. Watch some of these highlights and you may feel the same way.

2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil is still 3 years away but it feels like it is going to blow the past one out of the water. Brazil is a mecca for the sport and I can't wait to see what it has in store for us. Qualifying starts next year!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Olympics, should be a synonym for passion...

Well, as we all remember last year at this time we were cheering and celebrating together as a country. It is the one year anniversary of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games. So I decided to do some reflecting because I remembered how I felt.
Canada hosted it's third Olympic games, first being Montreal (summer games), second being Calgary (winter games) and then obviously Vancouver. However, this time it was different, it was the first time we have seen Canadians, known for our humbleness, rip off our metaphoric shirts and pound our chests.
- Actually I think I really did that, a couple of times - 
At the same time we were being the hosts everyone thought we would be. Which I think was remarkable in itself, to be able to cheer like that with out people getting annoyed, but actually embracing it. Example, Oprah.
Watching the CTV special about the one year anniversary got me thinking about what it was like during those 17 days.
I remembered being inspired and emotional. Cheering with my family, my friends, and screaming by myself when Alexandre Bilodeau won Canada's first ever gold medal on home turf. I wouldn't say I was bawling but there were tears. I know I never felt so proud to be Canadian as I did during this time. 
What does all this have to do with passion? Other than the facts that the athletes competing all had great passion for their respected sport but turned it into passion to do it for their country. 
-I saw this most when Mellisa Hollingsworth missed the podium and the first thing she did was apologize to the country. We all know there was no need to apologize but her passion to win for our country made her. Also lets not forget Joannie Rochette. How could we? That is true passion.
It showed me that passion can come in many different forms and can be expressed in many different ways. I also now think that pride and passion go hand in hand in some ways. You also really need to love something as we all fell in love with our country last February.
What I want to say here is after reflecting on the games and how I felt watching our athletes compete and our country unite. I think I am that much closer to finding my passion in life, even though I still don't know what it is.  I definitely NOW know how it feels. Oh Canada, thanks. 

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Close but no pizza...

From my last blog I tried thinking of things that I have done in the past that I
really liked and as you can see it is making pizza.
Me making a party tray.
I have a list of the top 5 pieces of pizza I have ever had other than my own:
1. New Jersey Shore boardwalk, the slice was the size of a small kite
2. From a pizza kiosk in Napoli, along the Mediterranean, it was a Margarita
3. "Lorenzo's" in Fonthill it's called Pizza Alla Panna, made with his home made cream sauce
4. In Little Italy, New York City, Lombardi's, wow what a Za.
5. Our provinces capital, T.O., Terroni's, the one on Queen St. feels like your in Italy.
The Margarita 

I'm almost done
Now some people may call me a pizza guru but that is only when it comes to eating them. I was once in the pizza business and loved it, so I decided to give it another shot and see if there was any sort of spark. I made a couple pies for my friends and family, to see if I could light that old flame, not the flame of the oven, the figurative one inside me.

It was great mixing the dough, making sure all the ingredients were just right. Crushing the tomato's with my secret mixture of fresh herbs and spices; a pinch here and a pinch there and a sauce was born. Now usually this is where I would blend a couple freshly graded cheeses but because the lack of certain equipment, time restraints and not being able to get the right types delivered I substituted it with a high quality pre-shredded mozzarella. Then, after letting the dough rise for a few hours and getting the temperature of the oven just right, it was time to put it all together.

Oh, its nice and hot...

Wow, that was fun and brought back some great memories. However, I think it may be just that, memories. Yes I put a lot of heart in to making my Za's but when I like something I usually do. The best part of it was when everyone had a piece, said it was great and wanted more. Maybe there is something in that?

So, I guess making pizza's isn't my zeal, even though I do love it, but as of right now I wouldn't give up a whole lot or sacrifice much to do it. Maybe it's just not the right time.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

In the beginning...

I have always wondered what I'm doing here, on this planet. Is there a meaning? Is there a purpose? 

There are those people, you know, that say things like, " I have always known what I wanted to be. Since I can remember." I get so frustrated every time I here people say something like that. How did they know they wanted to be a doctor, painter, chef or police officer, whatever it may be?

It has always eluded me, the passion I mean. I like a lot of things in life, but it is very difficult for me to say that something is my passion or that it is my zest for life. There is that saying, "Just go with the flow." I have been going with the flow for to long, it's about time I start my own flow. This blog will follow my journey as I try and figure out what my zeal is. I will experience new interests and examine old ones. The questions are: Do I have a passion already and just don't know it? Is there a passion out there for me and I just haven't found it? 

The first thing I need to do, try to understand the definition of passion? I looked it up. 

What I think it means: It is a feeling or emotion, it is innate, it is something that drives you. Passion is derived from the Latin word passio, which means suffering. 

Now you may think, as I did, this can't be right. A passion is supposed to be a good thing. However if you really think about it, it makes sense. A person with a passion usually works hard at it, it takes up a lot of ones time and they usually will sacrifice other parts of their life for it. For example if someone always wanted to be a doctor, they will need to have great marks in high school, university and med school. Even after all that they still need to keep up to date on everything in the medical field. This means that almost ones entire life was and is dedicated to becoming and continuing to be a doctor. They must have sacrificed many things along the way to achieve the marks to get in to the schools to become a doctor, and there was probably a bit of suffering too. Now don't mistake all of this, I love doctors and appreciate them, it is just an example I'm sure we all can understand, that's why I used it. However, does this mean I'm too late?  

Romeo and Juliet were passionate about each other, which lead to their death. Jesus Christ was passionate about spreading the word of God, which led to his death. But all three of them were suppose to come back from death. I hope this journey is as interesting as theirs but doesn't end the same.

I hope this blog will motivate people who are in the same position as I am. If you have any suggestions or opinions please feel free to express them, I need all the help I can.