The dreaded P-word, as we call it in my family. My father is the most patient person I know. He had to be to raise the six of us kids without serving prison time. Nothing fazes this man and as I sat behind the Bountiful bench it was like listening to my father each time Maxwell implored his team to be patient. When Coach Maxwell yelled "Patience" I could hear my father saying, "Be patient, Scotty." My mother's favorite line was, "Good things come to those who wait." My thoughts? Oh yeah, if it's so good, then why wait?To me, patience is using the microwave on low instead of high or asking my kids to do something and giving them an entire five minutes to accomplish the task.
I don't know how many times as a wrestling coach I have asked an athlete after he pinned his opponent, "Why didn't you pin him sooner?"
Get the job done. Shoot the basket, pin the guy, score the touchdown, hit the home run. Just get to the good part. I love fast forward.
I even read the last page of a novel before I start reading from the beginning.
Last Sunday, I flipped my TV to CBS to get my weekly dose of "Cold Case," one of the few television shows I watch on a regular basis. It was a rerun and to listen to me you would have thought they'd canceled the show. I wanted to watch "Cold Case" and I wanted a new episode and I wanted it now.
I don't like waiting for servers at restaurants, for the lights to go down at movie theaters or standing in lines at the grocery store and Heaven help the person with 11 items in front of me at the 10-item checkout.
I want to keep moving. I always have this dreaded feeling of what I might be missing at one place if I'm stuck someplace else.
I have tried, unsuccessfully, to learn patience. "You need to learn to be more patient, Scotty," my parents would say. Hey, whoever won a race by being patient? Isn't the idea to get to the finish line first?
By the end of the game last Friday I really wanted to go out of the stands and shake my friend, Coach Maxwell. Stop! Stop saying that word! I find it offensive and horrifying. It's like listening to nails on a chalkboard. I wanted the word "Patience" to stop being used and I wanted it to stop being used immediately.
As the game progressed, however, I watch Bountiful use their patient offense, passing and moving without the ball and finding open shots, and as they pulled away from Cottonwood, it hit me: Coach Maxwell might be onto something with this patience thing. By taking their time the Bountiful players were finding better shots and were playing team basketball and being successful. And it all started with that whole P-word.
So the game ended and I left thinking that maybe I could learn a great life lesson from what I had experienced. Maybe if patience worked in basketball, it could work in my personal life.
It really made me go hmmm.
Then I drove out onto the street and got stuck at every light between Cottonwood High School and my home.
Patience, huh? Maybe in basketball and perhaps at Bountiful, but I don't think that word is ever going to be a major part of my life. If it does, it needs to hurry up and do so.