Who’s your daddy – Part 1

artsports

 Somewhere in 2013 a former world champion speed skater posted a picture of his eight your old son with a bleeding head injury visiting a hospital. His public comment read:

“Children play. Does not cry, flirts with the nurses and tells the doctors tall stories . My hero!!”

The making of an elite athlete in full operation no doubt. Flirting with nurses while bleeding out of a head wound, how attractive. Entertaining males twice your size, how bold. At age eight, being a child, acting like an adult alpha male, ignoring the reality of a physical and emotional situation in order to create an idealized heroic narrative for others to enjoy, could be the definition of a warrior or a daddy pleaser or both. The clown, the seducer, the pain ignorer, vulnerability killer, the competitor and most of all a winner. Say hello to the world of sports.

Almost a century ago, a brilliant writer wrote a letter to his father confessing: “My writing was all about you; all I did there, after all, was to bemoan what I could not bemoan upon your breast.” (Franz Kafka, Letter to His Father). Welcome to the world of art.

Is this the old ‘tough skating farmer boy’ versus ‘sensitive scribbling urban nerd’ story? Maybe. The emotional dark versus the dumb blond, the Nazi’s physical superiority versus the deranged cultural, inferior Jews? No, most certainly not.

It is about todays ideal of integrating the shining sports mentality into the world of troubled arts. Is this a good idea? Who knows.

It all comes down to: Who’s your daddy?