What do Babe Ruth and bungee jumping have in common?

RuthBabeDefine scary. Can you? You can, I think, but one person’s scary is not always someone else’s scary hence, your definition is purely subjective.

Take bungee jumping — do you think that’s scary? Does it depend? Does the thought of making yourself jump from a perfectly good bridge thrill the pants off you yet the entire notion of jumping from the top of a building (yes, yes, you are still tethered) sound insane? Or do both scenarios sound like something that should be saved for Transformers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

What about public speaking — do you still have nightmares about the speech you had to give in seventh grade? Do you still remember what you were wearing? How much you sweated? The name of the kids in the front row who you knew were mocking every word you said?

When I was in the fifth grade I gave a speech about Babe Ruth. I don’t know why I chose the baseball legend, because for starters, I’ve never been a fan of the sport and other than the famed New York Yankees of yesteryear … the ones known by last name alone (Gehrig, Mantle, Cobb, Berra, DiMaggio, and of course, Mr. Ruth) … I couldn’t list any player. Really. Not a one. Still, I gave the speech … I wore red corduroys and a white shirt, and Frank (last name forgotten) sat in the front row, staring at me the entire time.

“Never let the fear of striking out get in your way. Every strike brings me closer to the next home run.”  — Babe Ruth

Thing is, for as terrifying as that first speech was, I was never scared to speak in public again. In fact, it’s something that I’ve relished over the years. Delivering perfectly thought-out words with all their inflection and meaning, and taking an audience — be it a few friends, family, or an entire crowd of strangers — down the path you wish them to go, is, for me anyway, far more exhilarating than bungee jumping. Which is why if you asked me to define scary, it would indeed be just that … of course I also find riding in elevators scary.

Today’s post inspired by The Daily Prompt: Witness Protection. “When you do something scary or stressful — bungee jumping, public speaking, etc. — do you prefer to be surrounded by friends or by strangers? Why?” OH … and for the record, Babe Ruth and bungee jumping have nothing in common – at least as far as I know.

 

3 comments

  1. Wonderful introduction to this post. I admire how you compared a fifth grade speech to bungee jumping and then somehow tied it all to Babe Ruth even though they aren’t even related. Also, I must say that my first speech was in fifth grade too (about the book “Hatchet”) and it did not go well… at all. So I know exactly how you felt. Keep up the good work and I am looking forward to reading more of your work. Please check out my blog at https://morescoopplease.wordpress.com/

    • I think the fifth grade just be the time for first speeches. That’s funny you had yours then too. I’ll checkout your blog later today. Live your screen name!

      • Thank you so much! I am a sucker for play on words. Yeah I guess fifth grade was the time they want you to improve speaking skills before transitioning into middle school.

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